(Closed) Suggestions for a long weekend in DC?

posted 8 years ago in Washington, D.C.
Post # 5
1820 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: August 2010

That old thread is great, but there are some Memorial Day specifics you should know, too:

  • It can be HOT.  Like, seriously hot and humid over Memorial Day weekend, so check the weather and pack accordingly.  Bring plenty of small bills for popsicle vendors.  :o)
  • DC over Memorial Day = Rolling Thunder, a huge motorcyle convention that comes to town over Memorial Day each year.  It’s lots of fun to check out, just be aware that it is a huge convention, so you will need to book hotel and restaurant reservations early and be prepared for traffic, especially around the Mall.

One of the best things about DC is that the museums and many attractions are free, so you can have plenty of vacation money left over for food!  Here are some of my favorite places to eat (all in DC proper and all are metro accessible – I have noted the neighborhood for each):

  • Rasika (Penn Quarter) –  great, food-forward Indian cuisine.  Definitely get the crispy spinach!
  • Central (downtown) – fabulous French bistro with a light, modern flair.  Great mussels and outside-the-box burgers (tuna, lobster, etc.).
  • Estadio (Logan Circle) – Spanish tapas with an excellent wine list.  Beautiful decor and fun neighborhood.
  • Red Rocks (Columbia Heights) – really good brick oven pizza, excellent draft beers, big outdoor patio.
  • Marvin (U Street) – funky Belgian/Southern fushion in a super-hip location.  Great mussels and french fries, chicken and waffles.  Big, fun roof deck bar.  Be sure to stop in next door – at the un-signed Gibson – for a hand-crafted, speakeasy cocktail.
  • Tabard Inn (east Dupont) – quaint, old bed and breakfast with a lovely restaurant (think tiny tables, a dim, fire-lit bar, and a beautiful walled-garden patio).  Best brunch in DC, hands down.  Dinner is also wonderful, but more of a splurge than the rest of the places I have mentioned.

As far as places to stay, if you want a bit of a splurge and like B&Bs, I highly recommend the Swann House in north Dupont (http://www.swannhouse.com/).  It is absolutely gorgeous, plus it is close to everything, and you can walk everywhere.

I absolutely love DC and am so excited that you and your husband have chosen it for your trip this year!  You are going to have an amazing time.  Please let me know if you need any more information.

Post # 7
661 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: April 2012

Rolling Thunder is not necessarily a convention.  I would recommend that you google it.  It’s AMAZING what it stands for.

Post # 8
1820 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: August 2010

Re: Rolling Thundermissyjane77 is totally right.  Sorry for being lazy and not getting into the full details – “convention” was the best word I could come up with.  Do NOT let that keep you from DC over Memorial Day – Rolling Thunder is an amazing (and very respectful) event.  I only mentioned it because it brings a lot of people to DC that weekend, so I thought you would need a heads up on reservations.

Re: heat:  I am not going to lie, it can be ugly.  It can also be incredibly beautiful and breezy.  You just never know.  The first time I went to Boston for Memorial Day, I packed like it was DC and was freezing the whole time.  My husband is from Boston and every time he talks about moving back, I am like, no way – it’s cold there at the end of May!!!  :o)

Post # 10
659 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: March 2011

I wrote a response, but it did not load.  I hate that!

I live right next to the Swann House (I can see it from my window) and it is wonderful – beautiful rooms, breakfast always smells great, they have a pool during the season (probably memorial day weekend until labor day weekend).  However, it is also directly across the street from a very busy dog park.  Weekends, it opens at 8am so if you want to sleep in or relax, trust me – it will be difficult.  I haven’t slept in since it opened…and I have a dog!  It’s super irritating.  However, you’ll be in a part of town that rolling thunder probably won’t be in – and they tend to travel in larger groups. 

Kimpton hotels are also funky and great.  The one we are having our wedding at – the Palomar – also has a pool. 

Also, memorial day weekend is the start of DC tourist season.  I always recommend to people to visit DC in the spring (March or April) or the fall (Columbus Weekend would be great) if possible because the weather is better and it’s not as crowded. 

Post # 11
4137 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: May 2011

tabard inn has the best brunch! other meals there aren’t always worth the cost, in my opinion, but the homemade doughnuts at brunch are to die for!

Post # 12
1184 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2011

i second the kimpton hotels – hotel monaco and palomar are both cute boutique hotels in good parts of town to stay in. rolling thunder is awesome, but definitely something to be aware of that weekend. i can remember once having to wait like an hour to be able to cross a street while the whole parade of motorcyclers went by. don’t be put off by the heat….honestly it’s that time of year when the weather is totally unpredictable. i can remember memorial day bbqs in jeans and hoodies, and other years wearing shorts and tanktops. if it makes you feel better, my Fiance also hates extreme heat and humidity, and so doesn’t really love going to see my parents (in DC) during the hottest months there. but he loves it there in may/early june. we usually always go down at the beginning of june and then don’t return until september. the worst humidity is in july/august.

Post # 16
459 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: April 2010

I second the recommendation for the Tabard Inn…that is where I got married!

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