Round The World and other travels

A frequent flyer's collection of trip diaries

August 2005 : InterContinental The Willard

Quite simply, the best hotel I have ever stayed at - and there have been some really nice ones! Situated on Pennsylvania Avenue, a mere two blocks from the White House, the Willard is certainly right in the middle of things and in fact is something of a Washington institution. The lobby is amazingly ornate and, depending on when you arrive, you may be greeted by the sounds of live piano or harp music. Stroll along the famous Peacock Alley - a long, internal corridor where, at around 4pm, people sit having traditional afternoon tea. Have a look at the display detailing the hotel's long and varied history.

I was upgraded to Executive Suite 838, while nephews Mark and Michael were in nearby room 841. 841 was impressive enough, but 838 was absolutely superb. It had been formed by combining two rooms to form a spacious and luxurious suite. The former section of corridor out to the elevators now serves as a vestibule area. The original Room 838 is the bedroom, with its own bathroom. The old 837 is now the dayroom, which also has its own bathroom, complete with separate, walk-in shower. Both rooms had spacious closets, TVs, CD players and - most importantly for a Royal Ambassador travelling with guests - fully stocked mini-bars

To be perfectly honest, I had hesitated about booking The Willard in case it would be just a little too grand. I feared that a group of tourists turning up in tee-shirts and shorts might be frowned upon. Nothing could have been further from the truth. The staff were among the friendliest and most professional I have ever encountered, with not the slightest hint of snootiness.

The three of us had a wonderful stay and I cannot recommend this hotel highly enough

Public areas

Executive Suite 838

In : Wed 17 Aug 2005
Out : Fri 19 Aug 2005
Nights : 2
Room : 838 (King Executive Suite)