Author Archive

Wholesome Wave – Nourishing Neighborhoods Across America

April 23, 2012

Farm fresh ingredients and the desire to serve are a winning combination for both Wholesome Wave and Executive Chef Duane Keller at 14K Restaurant.  Chef Keller’s belief that only the freshest ingredients should be used in his dishes, along with strong ties to community outreach projects made the Hamilton Crowne Plaza and 14K Restaurant a natural choice to partner with Wholesome Wave for their third annual meeting.

Finding affordable, local produce can be even more difficult when you have to make every food dollar go as far as possible to feed your family.

To help combat this problem, Michel Nischan, two-time James Beard Foundation Award winner, founded Wholesome Wave to make fresh, local food more available and affordable. Programs like Double Value Coupon Program encourage SNAP, WIC and FMNP recipients to use their benefits at participating farm markets- keeping the funds within the local communities, providing new revenue streams for small and mid-size farms, and providing the community with more affordable fresh, local food.

The Hamilton Crowne Plaza and 14K are proud to be hosting the Wholesome Wave annual meeting in Washington DC this week. For the Tuesday demonstration, Chef Nischan will join 14K’s Chef Keller to prepare a four-course, locally-sourced meal for 130 guests.

We are pleased to host this year’s additional speakers at the Wholesome Wave meeting:

Jose Andres

Most visitors to Washington are familiar with chef Jose Andres from a visit to one of his restaurants – Jaleo (get the dates and try not to share them), Oyamel, Zaytinya, America Eats Tavern (be sure to visit before that leaves us on July 4th), or if you’re really lucky – Minibar (make reservations 30 days in advance).  Many people don’t know that his tireless efforts to promote affordable fresh food recently landed him on Time Magazine’s list of 100 Most Influential People in the World.

Deputy Secretary Kathleen Merrigan

Deputy Secretary of Agriculture Kathleen Merrigan manages the Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food program and authored the 1990 Organic Foods Production Act. She is a proponent of community and urban gardens and was one of Time Magazine’s Most Influential People in 2010.

Congresswoman Chellie Pingree

From a farming family herself, Congresswoman Pingree started an organic farm to sell produce and yarn from her sheep – providing opportunities for knitting and yarn businesses in the community.

Audrey Rowe

As Administrator for the Food and Nutrition Service as the USDA, Audrey Rowe is responsible for the 15 nutrition assistance programs designed to provide children and families with better access to food and a more healthful diet.

To learn more or follow the details of the event, follow us on Twitter –  https://twitter.com/#!/14krestaurant

Cherry Blossoms on Parade

March 21, 2012
Cherry Blossoms in Washington DC

Cherry Blossoms

2012 marks the 100 anniversary of Washington’s most famous symbol of spring – the cherry trees that line the tidal basin and several other spots around the city. In 1912, the first cherry trees arrived as a gift from the Mayor of Tokyo, Japan.

To celebrate the centennial, Washington is celebrating with a 5 week festival. Highlights of this year’s Cherry Blossom festival include:

The National Park Service offers Cherry Blossom related events including lantern tours and ranger-led bike tours. Bike n Roll and Capital Bikeshare offer great options for bikes if you’re not traveling with your own bike – just be prepared for the crowds on the Mall.

Beyond the Mall, you can explore more about the Japanese culture and the cherry trees as a symbol of friendship:

  • Samurai Cinema at National Geographic as they screen three classics of Japanese cinema as part of the Samurai: The Warrior Transformed Exhibit.
  • The Millennium Stage at the Kennedy Center offers free daily performances at 6 pm (free shuttle buses from Foggy Bottom metro) including kyogen – a traditional Japanese comic theater.
  • The Library of Congress offers curator tours, lectures and a Japanese culture day related to the “Sakura: Cherry Blossoms as Living Symbols of Friendship” exhibit in the Jefferson Building.

Plan your trip today (check out the No Worries Weekend Getaway and the Family Fun Package), and be sure to stop by 14K Restaurant & Lounge and enjoy a relaxing drink on the patio while you’re here.

Sun Trust Rock n Roll Marathon

January 30, 2012

Are you in the middle of your training for the SunTrust Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon USA or half marathon in Washington, DC on March 17th?

Training

If you need help to make the most of your treadmill running over the winter, check out Competitor.com for some assistance  – Think Outside the Mill: How to Make the Most of Treadmill Running.  We hear the DC courses tend to be hilly, so definitely get some hill work in. The final course map will be available soon.

Meet your fellow runners

Keep up with your fellow runners on Twitter and on Facebook and be sure to share your training tips and advice.

Where to stay

When you’re ready to book your room, remember that the Hamilton Crowne Plaza is across the street from McPherson Square metro, right on the Orange and Blue line that will take you straight to the starting line at RFK Stadium (Metro Station: Stadium Armory).  We have special rates and packages just for Sun Trust Rock N Roll USA participants.  Our Sleep Advantage program will ensure you get a good night’s rest with our plush bedding and special sleep CD. Our guaranteed wake-up calls will get you up and out to the race on time in the morning.

14K Restaurant & Lounge offers great dining options for your pre-race dinner or a relaxing meal in your room after the event.

Washington’s Winter Wonderland

January 4, 2012

Even though the temperature might drop, things heat up in Washington during January and February. It’s a great time to visit and see the sights without the crowds of summer.

Martin Luther King Jr. Weekend

Each year, a birthday celebration is held for Dr. King on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial where Dr. King gave his “I have a dream speech.”

This is also the first year visitors will have the opportunity to visit the new Martin Luther King memorial on the National Mall for Dr. King’s birthday.

Snow Days

While we can’t control the weather, we can help you control where you get stranded. If you have to “shelter in place” wouldn’t you rather be with us enjoying the lounge at 14K Restaurant and a nice warm bed upstairs? Watch our Facebook page for snowed-in specials.

Valentine’s Weekend

We’ve mentioned Tudor Place before – it’s a beautiful home in Georgetown built by Martha Washington’s granddaughter and kept in the family for 6 generations. It’s worth a visit at any time of year for the gardens or the seasonal decorations. And on Valentine’s Day, Tudor Place offers several events to tempt you including a Valentine’s Tea in the afternoon or an evening event that includes wine and chocolate covered strawberries in the conservatory.  There’s even a Valentine’s card workshop for kids. (Tudor Place is a popular venue, so we recommend making reservations soon.)

And of course, watch the 14K Restaurant site for Chef Keller’s special Valentine’s menu.

Upcoming Events

Mark your calendar (and make your reservations) for these popular Washington events:

Cherry Blossom Festival – This year marks the 100th anniversary of the National Cherry Blossom Festival. Join the celebrations from March 20 – April 27 including daily free performances at the Sylvan Theater, the Blossom Kite Festival, Family Days at the National Building Museum, the Cherry Blossom Parade, a Japanese Street Festival, and more.

4th of July – it’s always a great time, and we’re within walking distance of The National Mall.

Inauguration – I know, I know. But it’s never too early to think about booking your rooms for Inauguration. By the time the election is over, all the prime spots are gone.

TravelZoo offer in Downtown Washington DC

November 23, 2011

Stay at the Hamilton Crowne Plaza in downtown Washington DC this holiday season with a special TravelZoo promotion now through January 30, 2012 (subject to availability).  Our special holiday rates start at $89 per night, and are available Thursday through Sunday over the following dates:

  • November 22-27, 2011
  • December 1-4, 8-11, 15-30, 2011
  • January 1-7, 12-16, 19-22, 27-30, 2012

Stay Monday through Wednesday for only $90 more per night, November 28 – December 14, 2011, and New Year’s Eve is available starting at $179 plus tax.

Reservations must be made by November 30 and pre-payment is not required to receive the special rate. Cancellation is required by 6 pm the day before arrival to avoid a 1 night cancellation fee. Weekend rates start at $89 plus tax. Weekday rates start at $179 plus tax. Rates are based on double occupancy. Each additional adult is $20.

The hotel offers an on-site Starbucks. Parking is available but not included. 14K Restaurant and Lounge offers a complimentary bottle of house wine with the purchase of two entrees 5 – 7 pm daily.

To take advantage of this offer, all reservations must be made through the TravelZoo site using offer code: ILDHK. Learn about holiday activities to enjoy during your stay in Washington.

Christmas in Washington

November 17, 2011
Nutcrackers outside Old Ebbitt Grill

Nutcrackers outside Old Ebbitt Grill

Plan your trip now to experience the all the fun holiday events that Washington DC has to offer. There’s plenty to keep you busy all month long starting with the National Tree lighting all the way through New Year’s Day.

The Capitol Christmas tree arrives in town on Monday November 28th and will be lit by the Speaker of the House during a ceremony on the West Front Lawn of the Capitol on December 6th at 5 pm.

The President lights the National Christmas Tree on December 1st. Tickets are required for that event but the  Pageant of Peace continues all month long on the Ellipse with daily musical performances, Santa’s Workshop and a train.

The weekend of December 3rd brings the Alexandria Holiday Tour of Homes and the Scottish Christmas Walk Parade. Tour some of the historic homes of Alexandria and watch the parade. There’s also a medieval marketplace and holiday pudding competition.

That evening brings the Parade of Lights both in Alexandria and at the 7th Street Harbor in Washington DC. See the boats decorated for the season and on parade.

Every day the Kennedy Center offers free performances on the Millennium Stage at 6 pm (take the free shuttle bus from Foggy Bottom metro). During December a variety of holiday-themed programs are offered – our favorite is always Merry Tuba Christmas on December 7th.

Another annual tradition is Jazz Piano Christmas when the Kennedy Center and National Public Radio bring top jazz pianists to perform their favorite holiday songs.

Washington has wonderful homes that are open to public and decorated for Christmas. A few of our favorites:

It wouldn’t be the holidays without the Nutcracker for many of us. You can take your pick:

  • The Kennedy Center offers the American Ballet Theater December 8 -11th.
  • The Washington Ballet performs the Nutcracker all month long with a local twist – George Washington is the Nutcracker and King George is the Rat King.
  • If you prefer a completely traditional version, West End Cinema will be broadcasting The Nutcracker live from the Bolshoi Theater in Moscow on December 18th and 19th.

If you prefer singing holiday songs to ballet, head over to the National Gallery of Art for Caroling in the Rotunda on weekend afternoons in December. A curator will also offer Gallery Talks with a curator on The Christmas Story in Art (check the schedule for specific dates and times.)

If ice skating and hot chocolate put you in the holiday spirit, then head outside to the Sculpture Garden and Pavilion Café to strap on your skates. The skating season begins in late November and runs all winter.

And of course, for New Year’s plan to join us at 14K Restaurant and Lounge for our New Year’s Eve Casino Gala Night. We’ll have a full open bar, DJ, dancing, table games, seafood and raw bar, and champagne toast at midnight – for all the fun you want to have. Stay with us for the night and enjoy late checkout and full American breakfast buffet on New Year’s Day.

Make your reservations now and enjoy all the holiday fun Washington has to offer.

Thanksgiving in Washington

November 8, 2011

It’s time to start making holiday plans again. If you have family in Washington DC or if you’re stopping by in town for a few days while you’re traveling, we have plenty going on here to get you in the holiday spirit.

Thanksgiving

Spending Thanksgiving in Washington DC? Save yourself time (and a lot of dishes) by having dinner with us. Our traditional Thanksgiving buffet dinner has all your holiday favorites, including turkey and all the trimmings, plus a steamship round, Virginia ham, raw bar and a wonderful chocolate display to go with those holiday pies.

After dinner, you can walk down to the White House or over to the National Mall and visit some of the Smithsonian museums, or just enjoy the monuments.

Specials for Holiday Travelers

We want your holiday travels to be relaxing and fun:

Pet Friendly – Can’t bear to leave your furry friend behind over the holidays? The Hamilton Crowne Plaza is a pet friendly hotel with a park right across the street, so you and your buddy can go for walks.

Parking – Driving to visit friends? The Hamilton has packages that include parking on weekends.

AAA Members – We offer special rates for AAA Members as well, so be sure to check those discounts (and bring your card).

Women Travelers – Traveling solo or spending some time with your friends? Enjoy the special amenities of our dedicated women’s floor.

Holiday Shopping

While you’re enjoying your holiday weekend, start your holiday shopping with a walk over to the White House Historical Association, and purchase a unique memento from your Washington visit. Our favorite is the White House Christmas Ornament commemorating the presidency of Teddy Roosevelt.

The Smithsonian museum shops also offer unique gifts. Budding astronomers, aviation and space enthusiasts will find the Air & Space Museum gift shop tempting, while artists will be drawn to the Hirshhorn Museum or the American Art Museum. Those who enjoy crafts will enjoy the Renwick Gallery Store.  You might even find a treat for yourself.

Fall Fun and Festivals in Washington DC

October 4, 2011

Fall is one of our favorite times in Washington DC. The heat and the crowds are gone, so you can enjoy the best of the city. Here are a few of our favorite things to do in October.  

Fall Foliage

Enjoy the fall foliage along the C&O Canal National Historic Park starting in Georgetown and stretching for 13 miles to Great Falls Park in Northern Virginia.

Explore Rock Creek Park – a park in the middle of the city offering walking, jogging and bike trails – even a stable.

Visit the US National Arboretum  and enjoy the Orchid show and sale or just take a walk around the grounds and enjoy the fall foliage and the seasonal blooming plants including hibiscus, autumn crocuses, water lilies, camellias, chrysanthemums, boxwood and more.

Take a walk at the National Zoo in the crisp fall weather (and maybe even smaller crowds).

Halloween

Enjoy the Halloween Film Festival at American Film Institute in Silver Spring. This year includes a special tribute to Vincent Price, plus the annual showing of the silent Nosferatu accompanied by live music. Halloween night brings a live interactive show of “The Tingler.”

Visit the National Zoo the evening of October 21, 22 or 23 with Boo at the Zoo and get treats and see the animals at night.

Take a walking tour and visit Washington’s most haunted houses including the Octagon House.

Oktoberfest

Looking to celebrate Oktoberfest? The Post’s Going Out Guru’s recommend the best in DC including Beirgarten Haus.

For German culture, including film, games and yes, Oktoberfest, visit the Goethe Institute.

Check out our specials and make your reservations now.

MLK Foundation Announces Changes to the Dedication Weekend Plans

August 26, 2011

We’ve had an exciting week in Washington DC – experiencing our first earthquake in over 100 years and awaiting the arrival of Hurricane Irene.

With all this in mind, the MLK Foundation along with the National Park Service, FEMA, and the DC mayor’s office have arrived at the very difficult conclusion that the weather conditions for the MLK Dedication weekend could pose a severe threat to the safety of the general public. Mr. Harry Johnson, Sr. President and CEO of the Foundation announced that “it is with a heavy heart and enormous disappointment that we announce that, in the interest of public safety, we are forced to change our plans.”

All scheduled events for Friday will continue as planned including the Partners In the Dream MLK Store and the Women Who Dare to Dream Luncheon, both being held at the Washington Convention Center. The last official event of the Dedication Week will be the National Prayer Service that will be held on Saturday at the Basilica on the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception. Please note that the Prayer Service was moved to the National Shrine from the National Cathedral.

The National Park Service will open the Memorial to the public on Saturday from 7:00 am until 12:00 noon, weather permitting.

The official dedication that was to be held on Sunday will be postponed to a later date in the fall.  An official announcement will be made by the MLK Foundation once a date has been confirmed. For more information, please visit www.dedicatethedream.org.

Supporting the MLK Memorial Foundation

August 18, 2011

In support of the Martin Luther King Memorial Foundation, the Hamilton Crowne Plaza Hotel is donating 10% of room revenue to the MLK Foundation for rooms booked from August 18, 2011  through the end of the year.

The MLK Memorial Foundation will dedicate the Martin Luther King, Jr. National Memorial in West Potomac Park along the Tidal Basin in Washington, D.C. on Sunday, August 28, 2011. For more information regarding the Martin Luther King, Jr. National Memorial and the Memorial Foundation, visit the website: www.mlkmemorial.org.

If you would like to attend the special ticketed ceremony, the Hamilton Crowne Plaza has a limited number of reserved tickets available for guests staying at the hotel.

The donation will be made based on the room rate reserved and booked directly through the hotel’s website using rate code ID 100289014 for stays now through December 31, 2011.


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