Carlyle Hotel
Exterior. Photo by Cris Molina.

Even a pauper will feel like royalty at Washington D.C.’s Carlyle Hotel. The Kimpton property began as state apartments in 1941 and was later converted to a hotel in the 1970s. Since then, it stands out as a unique art deco building nestled within the diverse, but gay-friendly neighborhood of DuPont Circle.

Shades of white, black, silver, and gray marble welcome you to the front lobby, where you’ll be greeted by a knowledgeable and cordial staff. You’ll also notice the stunning chandelier, designed by Florida native Michele Oka Doner. New Yorkers may recognize her work, “Radiant Site” at the Herald Square Subway station. Doner’s eclectic art combines elements of Miami, Japan, and Scandinavia—all of which can be seen in the hotel’s lounge area. In addition, the culture rich Carlyle hosts both permanent and rotating exhibits in the space.  Soak in these various displays or meet new people over a glass of wine at their happy hour, held 7 days a week from 5-6 PM.  Morning risers can enjoy tea and coffee, served from 6-10 AM every day. Like most Kimpton properties, both beverage gatherings are complimentary.

Lobby. Photo by Cris Molina.

Various sizes and styles of clean and classic rooms are available. During a recent stay, the City View King Deluxe perfectly met and exceeded my needs. The room was not particularly large, but offered an incredibly comfortable mattress and a huge 37” HD televison—perfect for unwinding at the end of the day.  Sunlight was also abundant. For those who react to morning like Dracula to garlic, blackout shades are optional.

The contemporary white tiled bathroom was roomy and spotless, providing reliable water pressure and Atelier and Bloem body products. The line is exclusive to Kimpton, but was created by well-known skin care experts Malin and Goetz. The mandarin and citrus body wash smells good enough to eat and leaves your skin feeling refreshed. However, it’s probably not a good idea to eat, since, well….it’s body wash!

Bathroom and products. Photo by Cris Molina.

If you’re that hungry, crack open a bag of snacks, chips, or other munchies from the room’s mini-bar. Alcoholic beverages are also available.  While they are not on the house, an accompanying price list can be found nearby. Room service from The Riggsby,  Carlyle’s esteemed restaurant is a phone call away.  Feeling fancy? Wander down to this upscale joint which boasts fine fare and cocktails from Chef Michael Schlow in an old-school but unpretentious posh setting.

King Deluxe Room. Photo by Cris Molina.

The Carlyle Hotel is situated a short walk from the center of DuPont Circle and Metro. Plenty of coffee spots, restaurants, and shops abound. For LGBTQ travelers, local bars and establishments are a mere block away. Before hitting the street to flaunt and flirt, check out the hotel’s 24 hour fitness center.

Travelling with pets? No problem. Kimpton states that “if they can fit through the door, they’ll welcome them in.”  There’s also a dog park just a block away.

Like any hotel, The Caryle offers competitive rates depending on the season. For leisure or business travel, it’s a cool and classy haven after a day in the Nation’s Capital.

For more information on The Carlyle Hotel, click here.