- Pricey valet parking (typical for D.C.)
- Foggy Bottom neighborhood is far from most sightseeing spots and fairly empty at night.
Oyster Hotel Photos
Oyster Hotel Review
Perfect blend of highbrow and low-key
Opened in 1986 and fully renovated in 2006, the 216-room Park Hyatt may be the best all-around luxury hotel in D.C., but it's not fussy or stuffy in the least. Its only visible flaw might be its sleepy Foggy Bottom location, which, though convenient to Georgetown, the State Department, and George Washington University, isn't ideal for exploring the Mall, the White House, or the monuments.
Forget the "Hyatt" in the hotel's name. The guest rooms are large (at least 408 square feet) and feel even bigger, thanks to New-York-based designer Tony Chi's contemporary lines, artful touches, and peaceful interiors. Chi has worked on restaurants for star chefs including Alain Ducasse and Wolfgang Puck, as well as hotels for the InterContinental brand, and dubs his aesthetic "invisible design" -- the point is not what you see in a room, but how what you see makes you feel. His bathrooms make you feel rapturous; they're positively sumptuous -- many are covered in limestone and feature exposed, walk-in showers with rainfall showerheads and separate tubs.
Service here is consistently gracious yet unobtrusive; room service operates continuously. The hotel's attractive fitness center and indoor pool area with separate Jacuzzi are first-rate. And its Lounge and Bar and Blue Duck Tavern are not only gastronomically celebrated, but they're also D.C. power-player hangouts.
With the exception of its drowsy locale, the Park Hyatt is truly in a league of its own in this town, even among formidable big-shots like the Four Seasons in Georgetown and the Ritz-Carlton (properties in Foggy Bottom and Georgetown). Comparably luxurious D.C. properties may include the Jefferson (excellent location, beautiful design); the Mandarin Oriental (good restaurants, stunning pool and spa); and the storied Hay-Adams (across the street from the White House, famous bar), but the Park Hyatt sustains such a consistently high level of serious comfort, first-class service, meticulous attention to detail, and quiet luxury that it's virtually unbeatable -- even among its stiff competition.
Nothing short of impeccable
The Park Hyatt expertly imparts an extraordinarily high level of service. Employees address guests by their surnames. This hotel espouses the kind of inconspicuous practices where if you remove a bottle of Evian water from the fitness center basket, it's replaced almost immediately, but you never actually see the staffer do it.
- 24-hour room service with gratuity and service charge automatically included
- Concierge available from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. daily
- In-room spa treatments (massages, facials, nail care) available, as well as in the Spa Room
- Hotel drop-off service in a Mercedes Benz sedan anywhere within five miles of the hotel; Monday to Friday, mornings and evenings
- Free four-hour bicycle rentals
- Automatic turndown with two large bottles of Voss water (free) on bedside tables
- Free shoeshine
The Park Hyatt has a convenient location in the West End, though it's decidedly sleepier than Georgetown, its wealthier, more historic neighbor that's a 10- to 15-minute walk west. The downside to the neighborhood is that there aren't many restaurants, cafes, or signs of life -- for those you'll need to head to Dupont Circle, a 15-minute walk (or quick taxi), or nearby Georgetown.
- 5-minute walk to the Foggy Bottom-GWU Metro stop (three stops on the Blue or Orange Line to downtown's Metro Center; five stops to Smithsonian museums), and within a 10- to 20-minute walk to the heart of Georgetown and some of the city's best shopping and restaurants.
- The Fairmont Hotel is directly across the street, so cabs are plentiful.
- 10- to 15-minute walk to the Potomac River waterfront
- 5-minute walk to George Washington University and Medical Center
- 20- to 25-minute walk or five to 10-minute taxi ride to the White House and Lincoln Memorial
- 15- to 20-minute walk, or two Metro stops (including a transfer), or five- to 10-minute taxi ride to Dupont Circle
Huge, hushed, and heavenly
In the quiet, subtly opulent, Tony-Chi-designed guest rooms, comfort and attention to detail are paramount. Sculpture, artwork, and coffee table books are artfully arranged; lighting works on dimmers; and the entire space is bathed in warm woods and calming ochre and light-gold tones. Park Deluxe Rooms are 408 square feet, while Premiere Park Deluxe Rooms measure 618 square feet -- some of the largest standard rooms in D.C. (There are also 1,224-square-foot and 1,632-square-foot Premier suites.) Bathrooms are sprawling and luxurious, and many feature beautiful walk-in limestone showers with rainfall showerheads.
- Most rooms have one king or two twin beds.
- 42-inch flat-screen TV (in Premier Park Deluxe Rooms and Suites, it rotates from sitting room to bedroom); HBO and on-demand movies
- Delightfully comfortable mattress with no tag; no box spring; glorious Frette sheets; down pillows
- Park Deluxe Rooms have attractive marble bathrooms, while Premier Park Deluxe Rooms feature extravagant, open-air limestone showers (no curtain, glass, or door) with blissful Kallista rainfall showerheads and limestone floors, plus limestone-bordered Kohler tubs; Kohler toilets and sink basins.
- High-quality Le Labo custom toiletries; Park Hyatt label extra-large robes and towels; slippers; adjustable Aliseo freestanding bathroom mirror made in Germany; phone in bathroom
- Art, architecture, and photography books in rooms (also on sale at front desk); artwork and sculpture; faux-wood blinds; understated lighting sconces; stainless steel floor lamp; adjustable bedside reading lamps; slick Lexon cubissimo alarm clock
- Hidden minibar and stocked snack tray with Dean & Deluca cashews, maltballs, and Swedish fish
- Considerable storage in bathroom closet; Infinity Collection El Safe with ingenious light and outlet inside for laptop; sliding hanging barn door with full-length mirror covers closet or bathroom
- Free Wi-Fi and wired Internet
Rooms and Rates
Plenty of amenities for almost everyone -- except spa junkies
The hotel is chock-full of impressive features -- including an attractive fitness center with indoor pool and separate Jacuzzi -- and even though it lacks a spa (unlike the W), the Park Hyatt's offerings are some of the finest in town.
- Beautiful indoor freshwater pool (three- to five-feet deep) and separate raised Jacuzzi on the 3rd floor near the fitness center, with skylights, a lounge area, towels, and a shower; pool towels arranged in pyramids.
- Narrow but lovely 24-hour fitness center on the 3nd floor with big picture windows to let in natural light, state-of-the-art Life Fitness cardio and circuit-weight-training equipment, balance balls, medicine balls, free weights, headphones, bottled Evian water, and newspapers
- 24-hour business center with PCs (free Internet), printers and fax machine in the lobby
- Free bicycle valet program includes four-hour rental, helmet, lock, bottled water, and bike map; available throughout the day with reservations through concierge.
No weight limit for dogs and cats
Pets are welcome, but require a nonrefundable deposit for each animal during the stay; hotel provides pet beds and food and water bowls at no extra charge.
Not the place to bring the gang for a family reunion
While there's plenty of space for families with youngsters to spread out, the refined environment clearly communicates: Leave the kids at home. And the Foggy Bottom location isn't as convenient to the Mall or Smithsonian Museums as the Marriott Residence Inn in Southwest, or the Carlyle Suites Hotel, which is one Metro stop from the National Zoo.
- Free cribs and rollaways
- 67 sets of connecting rooms
Inside and out, every corner of the Park Hyatt is supremely clean and superbly well maintained.
Almost no reason to eat out -- except for very dear prices
President Obama and First Lady Michelle chose to spend an anniversary dinner at the Park Hyatt's upscale Blue Duck Tavern (staffers were still buzzing about the excitement during my stay), which Tony Chi designed with an open kitchen, woodburning oven, and hardwood floors. The sublime menu emphasizes local ingredients. The award-winning fare is also offered in the hotel's private event space, The Gallery, which was renovated in 2011. Slightly more informal, the intimate and dimly-lit Lounge and Bar are just off the lobby, yet feel private, and serve artisanal cocktails (plus bowls of pistachios on the bar). The charming, adjacent Tea Cellar, with teas from around the world in lovely glass teapots, is open daily. You'll be thankful for these fine, albeit costly, choices in a neighborhood that offers very few.
- Blue Duck Tavern open daily for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, as well as brunch on the weekends; reservations recommended
- Lounge bar open day and night for cocktails and light meals
- Tea Cellar, adjacent to lounge, open daily; tea table on Saturdays and Sundays
- 24-hour room service with gratuity and service charge automatically included
|Things to Do||
Mini Bar (with liquor)
Separate Bedroom / Living Room Space
|Address||1201 24th Street NW, (at the intersection of 24th & M Streets NW), Washington DC, District of Columbia 20037, United States|
|Also Known As||