Archive for the ‘The Hotel’ Category

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.

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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.

Plan a trip to DC for National Hispanic Heritage Month

September 15, 2011

This month marks the celebration of the National Hispanic Heritage Month, and this year’s theme is “Many Backgrounds, Many Stories…One American Spirit.” This is a great chance for Washington to focus on the contributions of the Latin, Central American, South American, and Caribbean communities – and many of the events are free, so you can spend your money enjoying the cuisine, or on souvenirs of your trip.

The Latin American spirit has a colorful vibe unlike any other. With an eclectic mix of cultures, foods, music and traditions, its difficult not to become absorbed into this vibrant community. Growing up in Cochabamba, Bolivia. I remember the colorful scenes of the Carnaval – the women dancing down the street in colorful dresses, the men lighting the fireworks, and the excitement of the children playing on the street. Although these tender memories stayed with me during my time in Washington DC, I am excited to celebrate this month with friends and family and experience the exciting events being hosted this month in the city.

Exhibits

The National Gallery of Art will be presenting a diverse display featuring concerts and films to honor the diverse culture, and offering guided tours in Spanish. On Sunday September 26th, Carlos Cesar Rodriguez, a renowned pianist and composer, will be playing in concert on the West Building in the West Garden Court in honor of this special month, alongside many other Latin American composers and musicians. A film series honoring the bicentennial independence of Mexico from Spain will feature various Mexican films to include Alamar, Lake Tahoe, and Presumed Guilty and will play in the East Building Auditorium of the Gallery.

The National Museum of American History will be featuring special displays, particularly focusing on the Mexican Revolution and the migration of Mexicans to the United States. Later this year the museum will be celebrating Diosa Costello, a prominent Latin performer, artist, producer, club owner, as well as the first Latina on Broadway. Costello donated 11 of her costumes to the Smithsonian for this exhibit.

Film

The annual AFI Latin American Film Festival will be held September 22nd through October 12th at the AFI Silver Theater and Cultural Center. The festival will focus on featuring various new films that will be premiering from 18 different Latin American regions.

Zoo

On September 18th the National Zoo will be hosting a Fiesta Musical with animal demonstrations, Hispanic and Latin music, Latin dancers, and traditional foods and crafts.

Community

Washington DC is also a great place to visit the monuments of various iconic Hispanic figures that have played an important role and contributed to many of the unique events in the history of the Americas. These important individuals include Jose Artigas, Simon Bolivar, Admiral David G. Farragut, Bernardo de Galvez, Benito Pablo Juarez, and General Jose de San Martin.

Also, the United Spanish War Veterans Memorial is located on Memorial Avenueon the west side of the Arlington Memorial Bridge outside Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, VA.

Dining

In our own 14K Restaurant & Lounge, we will be honoring this special month with complimentary Seafood Tacos with the purchase of two dinner entrees. Chef’s special preparation of these delicious Seafood Tacos reminds me of Mazatlan in Mexico’s Golden Coast featuring fresh seafood served with tomato, shallots, jalapeños, fresh lime, and cilantro mayonnaise – a twist to the traditional Mexican ceviche with North American influence.

Discover some of the great restaurants in Washington serving Latin American and Caribbean food, just a short walk from the hotel.

Learn more about the events scheduled for the National Hispanic Heritage Month.

See our specials and book your room at the Hamilton Crowne Plaza now – be sure to book your table at 14K Restaurant as well.

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.

The Place to Meet

August 4, 2011
Hamilton Crowne Plaza Meeting Room

Hamilton Crowne Plaza Meeting Room

At the Hamilton Crowne Plaza in Washington DC, we know you are busy with your day-to-day work activities and sometimes planning your company’s meetings and events can add unnecessary stress to your day. This is why we have an entire team dedicated to planning the specifics of your meeting, so you don’t have to. With a dedicated Crowne Meetings Director, an award winning Meetings and Events Staff, the latest in conference technology, and a perfect location in the heart of Washington DC, your next meeting is sure to be a great success.

Our team has put together the Perfect Meeting Solution Package  to provide the value and quality you need for a successful event.  – both for your attendees and your budget. This special package includes the Presidential Break Package offering early morning continental, a mid-morning refresh break, and an afternoon break; our standard audio/visual package including 1 screen, LCD projector and cart, 1 flipchart with markers, pens and notepads; and ice water and candy. The package also includes complimentary wireless internet and room rental for one meeting room.

In addition, we are providing a pick-your-perk incentive that allows you to select which extra benefit will add the most value to your meeting. You can choose between  complimentary meeting room internet, 50% off room rental, or a complimentary early morning break. As an added bonus, we are offering 500 Priority Club Meeting Rewards Points for every $1,000 of food and beverage spending during your event.

To reserve your dates and start planning your next event simply call us directly at 202-218-7515 or send your RFP to sales@hamiltonhoteldc.com.

We look forward to working with you.

A Government Shutdown Does Not Mean a Letdown

April 4, 2011

If you’re planning a trip to Washington DC, you probably have visions of trips to the Capitol, the Smithsonian, the Washington Monument and the National Zoo dancing through your head.  But what if the government, who runs these museums and monuments, shut down for a short period of time? Due to a budget showdown, this could be the reality in the coming weeks. But there’s no need to panic – there’s still plenty to do in Washington that doesn’t depend on the government.

While you wouldn’t be able to enter any monuments (the Washington monument, the Lincoln memorial, etc.), the National Mall and the Tidal Basin are still available to walk around. The Washington DC World War I Memorial (behind the World War II Memorial on the Mall) is open.

The Smithsonian museums aren’t available, but Washington boasts plenty of other museums that offer enjoyable experiences for adults and children alike.

Fun with Kids

Adopt a cover and go on a daring mission at The International Spy Museum at 800 F Street NW. You’ll go through the Spy School, the Secret History of History, and learn about Spies Among Us.

Step into Tim Russert’s office at the Newseum – the only museum dedicated to journalism.  While you’re there don’t forget to check out the amazing view of the Capitol from the roof. Many visitors find the Newseum one of the most interesting museums in DC, and the $21.95 adult ticket gives you a 2-day pass. (555 Pennsylvania Avenue NW)

Explore the America I AM exhibit , The President’s Photographers exhibit or the Great Migrations photography exhibit at the National Geographic Museum at 17th & M Streets.

The National Building Museum at 401 F Street NW offers great exhibits for kids including LEGO Architecture: Towering Ambition.

Shake hands with all 44 presidents of the United States and see civil rights figures such as Martin Luther King and Rosa Parks at Madame Tussauds wax museum at 1001 F Street NW.

Walk onto the actual television set of America’s Most Wanted and a CSI crime lab at The National Museum of Crime and Punishment.

Art Museums

Connected to the Corcoran School of Design, The Corcoran Gallery of Art at 500 17th Street is a short walk from the hotel and has a strong collection of American art including John Singleton Copely, Frederic Church, Mary Cassat, Winslow Homer and Edward Hopper.

Located in Dupont Circle, The Phillips Collection is best known for their French Impressionists including Renoir’s Luncheon of the Boating Party. Every Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday at noon the Collection offers a 15 minute “Spotlight Talk” focusing on one work in the museum.

The National Museum of Women in the Arts at 1250 New York Avenue NW offers a permanent collection dedicated to works by women from the 16th Century to the present, from Renaissance paintings of Elisabetta Sirani to Irish and English women silversmiths to contemporary sculptures and paintings.

Hillwood Museum and Gardens is the home of Post cereal fortune Marjorie Merriweather Post.  Post was also married to E.F. Hutton and US Ambassador to the Soviet Union Joseph Davies.  During her time in the Soviet Union she collected Russian decorative and liturgical arts including many Faberge eggs.  The house and grounds at 4155 Linnean Avenue NW are a great way to pass an afternoon.  Check the calendar for family events.

The Kreeger Museum is a private, non-profit museum on Foxhall Road in Georgetown. The Kreeger’s collection contains nine Monets as well as works by Renoir, Sisley, Pissarro and Picasso. They frequently host chamber music concerts.

Civil War

While you won’t be able to tour the Arlington National Cemetery, the Historic Congressional Cemetery at 1801 E Street SE, the final resting place of Representative Tom Lantos, the only Holocaust survivor to serve in Congress; John Phillip Sousa, the “March King”; J. Edgar Hoover, longtime director of the FBI; and Eldridge Gerry, only Vice President to be buried in the District. There is a self-guided walking tour available, plus a docent-led tour each Saturday at 11 a.m. In addition, a special Civil War tour is offered on the third Saturday of each month at 1 p.m.

Lincoln spent nearly a quarter of his presidency at a cottage in upper Washington as he pondered the decisions he needed to make. You can tour Lincoln Cottage near the Old Soldier’s Home.

Visit the Lincoln exhibit at Ford’s Theater. Check the Calendar for “History on Foot” walking tours reexamining the clues of Lincoln’s assassination.

Remember too that most of Washington DC’s history is in the neighborhoods, not in museums. Walk down U Street and follow the DC Neighborhood Heritage Trail. The first market is located at 13th & U Streets.  Learn more about the history of Washington’s African American community while you walk through a revitalized neighborhood full of shops and restaurants. Be sure to stop by Love Café and DC institution Ben’s Chili Bowl – even the President has been known to stop by here.

Washington in Bloom!

March 21, 2011

Cherry Blossoms along the Tidal Basin in Washington DCSpring has officially arrived which means the Cherry Blossoms won’t be far behind. An annual tradition in Washington, the Cherry Blossom Festival will have a different feel this year in light of recent events in Japan. The cherry trees were a gift from Japan in 1912. The first lady and the wife of the Japanese ambassador planted the first two cherry trees along the Tidal Basin.

Luckily the weather has cooperated this year, and the National Park Service is predicting that peak blooms should fall during the National Cherry Blossom Festival, March 26 through April 10. There are free daily performances at the Sylvan Theater

The traditional Sakura Matsuri festival on April 9 at 12th & Pennsylvania Avenue will charge a $5 admission fee for the first time, with a portion of the fee donated to earthquake relief efforts.

On Thursday, March 24, there will be a walk around the Tidal Basin to remember those affected by the earthquake. The walk will start at 6:30 pm south of the Washington Monument near the Sylvan Theater.

The Cherry Blossom 10 Mile / 5 K is scheduled for Sunday, April 3. The race is sold out well in advance, so if you haven’t already signed up, you should make plans to cheer on the runners. If you are running, consider staying downtown with us to avoid Metro delays on race day.

Post-race or anytime during the festival stop by the patio at 14K Restaurant for cherry-themed drink specials and dishes.

The National Park Service offers a variety of special Cherry Blossom related daily activities around the Tidal Basin including Ranger-led talks. 3.5 mile runs, bicycle tours, lantern walks, and a junior ranger activity tent for children 6-12.

The festival closes with the Cherry Blossom Parade on April 9 down Constitution Avenue.

Planning a Washington Wedding

February 22, 2011

Planning a wedding can be overwhelming for many couples – especially if you’re trying to plan a wedding in a new city or on a budget. We asked local wedding planner Cara Collins for her favorite wedding planning tips and suggestions to help couples planning their big day.

How long in advance do you advise brides to begin scouting their wedding and reception venues?

I suggest brides begin researching wedding venues at least a year before their ideal wedding date. Most venues book up 9-12 months ahead of time, and once you’ve chosen your venue and finalized the date, you can begin booking your other wedding vendors. Photographers also book up well in advance so book your venue and photographer first thing!

What are some trends you’re seeing in weddings this year?

Vintage-themed weddings have been all the rage for the past year, and I don’t see that trend ending any time soon. Vintage weddings just seem to have a more intimate feel, and some of the antiques can be borrowed from your guests, making everything more personal and inexpensive!

Another new trend that’s catching on is a monochromatic color scheme in white, ivory, or neutrals. Brides are even choosing these colors for the bridesmaids’ dresses, which is very modern, and a look I adore. An all-white wedding looks so fresh, ethereal, and elegant.

What’s your best tip for staying in budget?

Choose your top three most important pieces of your wedding. Try not to skimp on those, and find ways to budget with everything else! There are so many wonderful DIY projects out there which not only save you money and add personality to your wedding, but these projects can also be a fun thing to do with your husband-to-be or bridesmaids!

Also, choosing a venue (like a hotel) that has their own tableware, linens, chairs, etc. will save you a lot of money compared to choosing a tent or an empty hall. While tenting on a property can be very beautiful, you need to rent EVERYTHING so it is not exactly budget friendly. Another trend that saves money is opting out of a traditional formal sit-down dinner and choosing to have an informal cocktail party or a backyard BBQ style dinner. Everyone loves a mac and cheese or mashed potato bar, and food like this can save you a bundle!

If you could tell brides one thing, what would it be?

Enjoy your wedding day and don’t stress about the little things. This is one of the most exciting days of your life, and a day to spend with your most cherished family, friends, and of course – your new husband. Hire a planner to take care of the details so you can relax, get married, and dance!

Ready to start planning?

The Hamilton Crowne Plaza is a great wedding venue – for a wedding ceremony, a destination wedding reception, a place to host your wedding guests or for your wedding night stay. Contact us to start making your plans.


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