lunes, marzo 24, 2008

ElleDecor The Guide: Washington, D.C.

The Guide: Washington, D.C.
Written by Jura Koncius for ElleDecor

ESSENTIAL WASHINGTON, D.C.

The area code is 202

Commune with nature. The Georgetown hillside estate Dumbarton Oaks (339-6401; doaks.org) features ten acres of formal terraced gardens with seasonal shows of crocuses, roses, and wisteria.

Take the path less traveled. Stroll through the FDR Memorial (www.nps.gov/fdrm) on the western side of the Tidal Basin at dusk when the crowds have subsided. Don’t miss the waterfalls in the landscaped outdoor rooms near the famous Cherry Tree Walk (
nationalcherryblossomfestival.org).

Shop for goodies. Capitol Hill’s Eastern Market (7th St. and North Carolina Ave., SE; easternmarket.net) was damaged in a fire last year, but vendors settled in a temporary hall across the street. On weekends, locals navigate the stalls of produce, cheese, and baked goods and the adjacent open-air flea market.

Experience capital culture. The Kennedy Center (2700 F St., NW; 467-4600; kennedy-center.org) hosts more than 2,000 plays, ballets, and concerts a year. Daily free programs at 6 p.m.

WHAT TO SEE

Diplomatic Reception Rooms of the Department of State, 2201 C St., NW, 647-3241; receptiontours.state.gov: This clutch of stately rooms where diplomats schmooze is appointed with priceless 18th- and 19th-century American paintings, furniture, and decorative arts.

Hillwood Estate, Museum, and Gardens, 4155 Linnean Ave., NW, 686-5807; hillwoodmuseum.org: Fabergé and fabulousness courtesy of cereal heiress Marjorie Merriweather Post (1887–1973) at her elegant, antiques-filled Georgian-style mansion on 25 acres.

The Kreeger Museum, 2401 Foxhall Rd., NW, 337-3050; kreegermuseum.org: Works by Monet, Cézanne, and Washington artists such as Gene Davis and Sam Gilliam are on view in this posh 1967 residence-cum-recital-hall designed by Philip Johnson.

National Building Museum, 401 F St., NW, 272-2448; nbm.org: This architecture, design, and urban-planning temple boasts a dramatic Great Hall with eight colossal Corinthian columns, a frequent venue for glittering galas.

The White House, 1600 Pennsylvania Ave., NW, 456-7041; whitehouse.gov: Contact your Congressperson at least a month in advance to reserve a self-guided tour for 10 or more or go to the White House Visitor Center, which has exhibits of presidential architecture, furnishings, fashion, and pets.

WHERE TO STAY

The Fairmont, 2401 M St., NW, 429-2400;
fairmont.com: This large, sunny hotel near Dupont Circle features French doors in some rooms that overlook a lush courtyard garden.

Four Seasons Hotel, 2800 Pennsylvania Ave., NW, 342-0444; fourseasons.com: Luxurious yet understated Georgetown lodgings. The indoor pool, newly spritzed-up spa, and proper afternoon tea will tempt you to stay in.

The Hotel George, 15 E St., NW, 347-4200; hotelgeorge.com: Modern Kimpton boutique hotel a few blocks from Union Station, Capitol Hill, and Mall museums that’s popular with VIPs like Arianna Huffington and Al Franken.

Hotel Helix, 1430 Rhode Island Ave., NW, 462-9001; hotelhelix.com: Austin Powers–like vibe near Logan Circle with a lively lounge scene.

Mandarin Oriental, 1330 Maryland Ave., SW, 554-8588; mandarinoriental.com: Feng shui overlooking the Tidal Basin. Enjoy water views in rooms equipped with Japanese screens and state-of-the-art entertainment systems, as well as a soothing martini in CityZen restaurant.

The Ritz-Carlton Georgetown, 3100 South St., NW, 912-4100; ritzcarlton.com: Small hotel boasting 86 posh rooms and limestone baths with deep soaking tubs.

WHERE TO EAT

2Amys, 3715 Macomb St., NW, 885-5700; 2amyspizza.com: Neapolitan dough baked in a wood-burning oven is the star of this popular pizza joint.

Belga Café, 514 8th St., SE, 544-0100; belgacafe.com: Steamed mussels, cheese croquettes, and Belgian beers draw a crowd of young Capitol Hill staffers to this modern bistro.

Ben’s Chili Bowl, 1213 U St., NW, 667-0909; benschilibowl.com: Serving legendary chili dogs since 1958, the counter and tables are always bustling.

Hook, 3241 M St., NW, 625-4488; hookdc.com: Sustainable seafood in sleek, sophisticated surroundings. Don’t miss the tautog and weakfish.

Lafayette Room, 800 16th St., NW, 638-2570; hayadams.com: Power-breakfast central in plush, Waspy digs at the Hay-Adams hotel. Plenty of fresh flowers, starched linens, and silver—plus drop-dead views of the White House.

Leopold’s Kafe + Konditorei, 3315 M St., NW, 965-6005; kafeleopolds.com: Schnitzel and Sacher torte are daily fare at this European-style cafe on quiet Cady’s Alley.

Rasika, 633 D St., NW, 637-1222; rasikarestaurant.com: Glam Indian food by chef Vikram Sunderam attracts luminaries such as D.C. mayor Adrian Fenty.

WHERE TO SHOP

A Mano, 1677 Wisconsin Ave., NW, 298-7200; amano.bz: Adam Mahr’s Italian-majolica-and-French-faience shop in a 19th-century Georgetown house also sells chic table linens, William Yeoward crystal, and Mark Spirito jewels.

And Beige, 1781 Florida Ave., NW, 234-1557;
andbeige.com. Neutral modern accessories, furniture, and lighting on the outskirts of funky Adams Morgan.

Apartment Zero, 406 7th St., NW, 628-4067; apartmentzero.com: Washington’s premier industrial-design store features furniture and housewares by Hella Jongerius, Antonio Citterio, Karim Rashid, and others.

Après Peau, 1430 K St., NW, 783-0022; aprespeau.com: Attractive Washington mementos (White House note cards, First Lady bracelets), Fornasetti place mats, and melamine salad servers in a cozy boutique.

The Christ Child Society’s Opportunity Shop, 1427 Wisconsin Ave., NW, 333-6635; christchilddc.org: Elegant consignments, from diamonds to silver.

Cowgirl Creamery, 919 F St., NW, 393-6880; cowgirlcreamery.com: The friendly staff at this charming old-fashioned shop knows everything about homemade organic cheeses.

Cusp, 3030 M St., NW, 625-0893; blogonthecusp.com: Twentysomethings head to this new Neiman Marcus spin-off and buy Diane von Furstenberg frocks and costume jewelry by Kenneth Jay Lane.

Gore Dean, 32140 M St., NW, 625-9199; goredean.com: Mrs. John L. Strong stationery, French silver, and rock-crystal chandeliers overseen by Washington insider Deborah Gore Dean.

Home Rule, 1807 14th St., NW, 797-5544; homerule.com. Treats for every room of the house; look for the irresistible bath mats and kitchen timers.

Marston Luce, 1651 Wisconsin Ave., NW, 333-6800: Where Barbara Walters and Carly Simon go for 18th- and 19th-century painted French furniture.

RCKNDY, 1515 U St., NW, 332-5639; rckndy.com: This new modern design shop stocks laser-cut trays, Italian wool pillows, and Australian porcelain.

Relish, 3312 Cady’s Alley, NW, 333-5343; relishdc.com: Proprietor Nancy Pearlstein handpicks an enticing selection of women’s clothes and accessories by Jil Sander, Marni, Narciso Rodriguez, and Nina Ricci.

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