Four Seasons Hotel Washington, DC: Within Walking Distance The U.S. capital’s finest arts, parks and eats are just a stroll away.
1/9 Head up the street to Dumbarton Oaks, home to many terraced gardens and beautiful vistas, not to mention museums and historic rooms filled with rare and modern gardening books. Founded by Mildred and Robert Woods Bliss (a Harvard grad and diplomat in the U.S. Foreign Service), Dumbarton Oaks also houses a collection of pre-Columbian art (which was once lent to the National Gallery of Art).
2/9 Less than half a mile from the Hotel, you’ll find margaritas on tap at Mike Isabella’s (you may recognize him from Top Chef) new modern Mexican hot spot, Bandolero. For just USD 10 a glass (or USD 40 for a pitcher), you can kick back with a potent mixture of blanco tequila, citronage, lime and blood orange, topped with a Grand Marnier float. Bottoms up!
Photography Greg Powers
3/9 Head three blocks west to the Old Stone House, which was built in 1765. (Hint: that makes it the oldest standing building in the city.) Built by a cabinetmaker, Christopher Layman (who died shortly after completing the building), the house is now owned by the government, and remains a prime example of pre-Revolutionary American architecture. Rumour has it that the house was once used as either George Washington’s engineering headquarters or Suter's Tavern, though neither theory has been substantiated.
4/9 One of the most underrated museums in the city is the Newseum, a 250,000-sq.-ft. (23,225 m²) museum of news, complete with 15 major galleries and 15 theatres. Take a peek at the Berlin Wall gallery, which features eight 12-foot-high (3.7 metre) concrete sections of the original wall, or the September 11 exhibit before heading to the Watergate door or going on a 4-D theatre adventure.
Photography Sam Kittner
5/9 After a concert at The Kennedy Center (or even just to get away from the roar of the city), head up to the rooftop terrace to get gorgeous panoramic views that include the Thomas Jefferson Memorial, the Washington Monument and Watergate.
Photography courtesy The Kennedy Center
6/9 Georgetown Cupcake, founded by sisters Katherine Kallinis Berman and Sophie Kallinis LaMontagne, beckons with creamy frosting and devilishly moist cakes, but that’s not all it’s famous for: Sasha Obama celebrated her birthday there last year. Billed as the first and only cupcakery in town, Georgetown Cupcakes even has its own TV show on TLC called DC Cupcakes.
Photography Dayna Smith
7/9 The National Zoological Park has just opened Phase One of Elephant Trails, the newly expanded home for the zoo’s gentle giants. Guests of the exhibit can snag an exclusive behind-the-scenes tour of the state-of-the-art Barn (it’s not open to other visitors). To get there, take a relaxing 2 mile hike along the paved paths of Rock Creek, or make the most of your time and arrange other transportation. Tours begin at 8:15 am on Wednesdays and Sundays, and reservations are required. Don’t miss this special opportunity to watch the animals get their baths and eat breakfast.
Photography courtesy Mehgan Murphy/Smithsonian’s National Zoo
8/9 Less than two blocks away from the Hotel sits Unum, a new-to-the-scene intimate (only 50 seats) neighbourhood restaurant churning out new American cuisine (think creamy mushroom truffle mac and cheese) and ethnic eats (think Indian-spiced lamb shank with cauliflower, raisins, cashews and cilantro-mint chutney).
Photography Katie Stoops
9/9 When the sun goes down and the noise begins to fade, the city becomes—if it’s possible—even more spectacular. Avoiding the crowds is another good reason to opt for the Memorials by Moonlight tour with Scout Photo Expeditions, led by former Hollywood location scout Cindi Hobgood.
Photography courtesy Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts
Gardens, history and margaritas on tap—Washington’s got it all. We’ve rounded up the best-kept secrets in the district to help you feel like a true local on your next visit to
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Four Seasons Magazine
The best of luxury travel, style and culture from thought leaders and tastemakers
Issue 4 2014