It’s practically a rite of passage for an American child to visit Washington, D.C. either on a school field trip or as part of a family vacation. But families aren’t the only ones making the trip to this city – it is full of business travelers as well. Fortunately, some hotels really go out of their way to cater families and make a child’s first trip to the nation’s capital a truly memorable experience. Trekaroo families have found the best kid-friendly hotels in Washington DC. These hotels are especially welcoming to their younger guests, and have perks that make soaking up the history in the nation’s capital more enjoyable for the entire family.
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Best Hotel near Metro Center: Grand Hyatt Washington
Grand Hyatt Washington is consistently voted a Trekaroo family-favorite hotel in Washington DC due to its convenient location. Metro Center Station, serving the red, blue, orange and silver Metro lines, is located right downstairs from the hotel’s lobby; there is no need to even walk outside in order to catch trains to the National Zoo, Arlington Cemetery, and Reagan National Airport. The White House and Smithsonian National Museum of American History are both within a 10-minute-walk of the hotel, making it simple to come back to the hotel mid-day for a rest or a snack. Trekaroo families who have stayed at the Grand Hyatt loved the comfortable beds, convenient outlets and charging stations, and bedside reading lights.
Read full reviews from families on The Grand Hyatt Washington.
Trying to Make the Most of your Family’s Stay in Washington DC? Here’s a list of the Smithsonian Museums that your family can visit for free.
Best Kid-Friendly Hotel with History: Omni Shoreham
Undoubtedly, most families come to the nation’s capital to enjoy some history. Sometimes historic places and young children don’t mix well – but at the Omni Shoreham even families can enjoy a historic hotel which has hosted countless inaugural balls and many notable guests. At check-in, children are welcomed with smiles and a small backpack full of activities as part of the “Omni Sensational Kids” program; later their first evening, children are treated to complimentary milk and cookies in their room. The Omni Shoreham might not be downtown, but it is just a 10-minute-walk from the most kid-friendly destination in town, the pandas at the National Zoo.
Read the full reviews from families on The Omni Shoreham.
Can’t get Enough History? Here’s a list of the most important memorials not to miss in the Nation’s Capital
Best Downtown Hotel with Family-Friendly Amenities: Hilton Garden Inn Downtown DC
Deciding where to eat dinner with tired kids who have spent the day walking between the monuments and memorials of the Nation’s Capital can be quite the challenge. It’s nice to have options. The night we stayed at the Hilton Garden Inn Downtown, we decided to take advantage of a seasonal, Friday Night kids-eat-free promotion at the hotel’s restaurant. However, we could have also ordered room service, warmed up refrigerated leftovers from a previous dinner using our room’s microwave, or simply walked to dozens of restaurants within minutes of stepping out the door of the hotel. It’s rare to find an in-room refrigerator, Keurig coffee maker, and microwave at a downtown hotel with a restaurant; the Hilton Garden Inn Downtown has it all. The hotel also has a small pool, suites with excellent-quality sofa beds, a quiet location, and a nice selection of kid-friendly television channels. The list of family-friendly amenities sets this hotel apart from the rest.
Read the full reviews from families on The Hilton Garden Inn Downtown Washington DC.
Best Hotel with Bunk Beds: Hotel Madera
Everyone needs a good night’s sleep to keep up with the pace of a busy city like Washington DC. Fortunately, a couple of Kimpton’s hotels in Washington DC, including Hotel Madera and Hotel Rouge, have bunk bed rooms available. With the kids quietly tucked away in their own beds, everyone can get a better night’s rest for the next day of sightseeing. On a cool morning, grab a complimentary cup of hot chocolate for the kids and coffee for the adults to fuel your day of sightseeing as you head out the door; marshmallows and whip cream are available to make the start of the day even sweeter. Hotel Madera is just a five-minute-walk from the Dupont Circle Metro Station and a 15-minute-walk from the White House.
Hungry? Many Kimpton Hotels have adjacent restaurants. Check out reviews for Kimpton’s Firefly Restaurant
Best Hotel with an Indoor Pool: CAMBRiA hotel & suites Washington DC Convention Center
Families visiting Washington DC during the winter months are likely to spend a lot more time at their hotel than those traveling during the summer months. Yes, seeing the monuments after dark should still be a part of your family’s itinerary whether you visit in January or June, but in January it is dark earlier and the temperatures will send you inside much faster. After walking around the National Christmas Tree in freezing temperatures just after dark, our family had plenty of time for a swim before bedtime at the CAMBRiA hotel & suites Washington DC Convention Center. My kids splashed around happily for over an hour in the rooftop indoor pool while I took in the view of the US Capitol and Washington Monument.
Of course, the pool is a great feature for families traveling any time of year. In addition, the hotel’s suites are relatively spacious for an urban hotel, and the buffet breakfast, available at a reasonable price, is a great way to start off a full day of exploring the nation’s capital.
Read the full review from families on the CAMBRiA hotel & suites Washington DC Convention Center.
Best Hotel with Fully Equipped In-Suite Kitchens: Avenue Suites Washington DC
Do you like the flexibility to be able to cook meals on the road? Maybe there is a picky eater in your family and you’d prefer the option of being able to cook a healthy meal rather than buy another hot dog from a roadside vendor. Possibly, food allergies in the family make dining out a stressful experience. Avenue Suites Washington DC has a full kitchen in every one of their suites. Better yet, families don’t have to do their own grocery shopping; Avenue Suites partners with the Trader Joes just across the street to bring your groceries to you in their Stock-the-Fridge program. Dining out is always an option too; Avenue Suites is just a 10-minute-walk from the Georgetown’s cupcake shops and cafes.
Read the full reviews from families on Avenue Suites Washington DC.
Spending some time with the kids in Georgetown? Here’s a list of kid-friendly things to do in the neighborhood
Best Holiday Decorations: The Willard
The Christmas decorations at The Willard are legendary. And, speaking from experience, the Easter decorations featuring cherry blossoms aren’t too shabby either. The beauty doesn’t end, however, the moment that families step into the elevators and out of the lobby. The views of the National Mall and Washington Monument from the circular windows on the top floor of The Willard are among the best in Washington DC. Families especially love the spacious rooms at this historic, luxury hotel. Whether you’re in town for the lighting of the National Christmas Tree or the White House Easter Egg Roll, the short walk across the street to the White House can’t be beat.
Read the full reviews from families on The Willard.
Best for Road Tripping Families: Alexandria
Families that are driving into the Washington DC area to explore the Nation’s Capital might not want to deal with the underground garages and valet parking fees that are commonly found at the hotels within walking distance of the National Mall. Many hotels in Alexandria, located just south of Washington DC across the Potomac River in Virginia, offer free parking and access to the Metro via a complimentary shuttle bus. From the King Street Metro Stop in Alexandria, it takes less than twenty minutes to arrive at the L’Enfant Plaza Station just steps from the National Air and Space Museum along the National Mall. Families driving to Washington DC from the north or the south find that Alexandria is remarkably easy to access from I-95 and the beltway.
While Alexandria has a charming downtown historic district, the most budget-friendly hotels are found in more suburban areas. These chain hotels often offer complimentary breakfast and indoor swimming pools in addition to free parking. On a recent trip up to the Nation’s Capital, one Trekaroo Superoo found Springhill Suites Alexandria a convenient base for exploring the area. She loved how easy the hotel was to access from the beltway, the well-stocked complimentary breakfast and the pool where her daughter could play at the end of a long day in the city.
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Explore our recommendations for the Top 10 things to do with kids in Washington DC.
Other Resources for Washington DC:
- All 100 Activities for kids in the Washington DC Metro Area
- Kid-friendly hotels in and around Washington DC
- The Best Kid-friendly Hiking Trails in DC – HikingAlong
- Indoor Places for Toddlers Around Washington DC – SuburbanDaddy
- 8 Things (Under $5) to Do in Washington DC with Toddlers – Two Kids and A Map
- Fun Washington, D.C. Activities that get Kids Fired Up – Sujatha
- Day Trips with Kids From Washington DC – teachmama
- Must See Attractions in DC with Preteens and Teens – musingsfromme
- What to do with Tweens in Washington D.C. – MsTwixt
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