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View out the glass ceiling at Waldorf Astoria, Washington DC
Waldorf Astoria, Washington DC

SmarterTravel Spotlight: Waldorf Astoria, Washington DC

Steeped in history, and with a grandeur that rivals the neighboring monuments, the new Waldorf Astoria Washington DC is a welcome addition to the capital’s luxury hotel scene. 

Housed in the Old Post Office, a landmark building built in 1899, the space underwent many transformations before opening as the controversial Trump Hotel in 2016. In 2022, the hotel was rebranded as the Waldorf Astoria, marking the brand’s first foray into Washington, DC.

This historic building has been painstakingly restored to its former glory and added modern updates, exceptional dining options, impeccable service, and a wealth of amenities, that make the hotel a comfortable sanctuary in the heart of the city. 

The Location

Aerial view of the Capitol Building and surrounding architecture in Washington DC

The Waldorf Astoria Washington DC occupies a prime location on Pennsylvania Avenue. Famous Washington attractions, including The White House, US Capitol, National Mall, and Washington Monument are within walking distance. 

Public transportation is easily accessible if you want to explore more of the city—the hotel overlooks the Federal Triangle Metro station. 

One of DC’s best places to visit is actually located within the Waldorf—the former Old Post Office tower, which is one of the city’s highest observation decks, offers 360-degree views of the city for free. 


Unexpected amenities designed to anticipate guests’ every need will surprise and delight visitors at every turn. 

The hotel’s spacious fitness center features state-of-the-art cardio and strength training equipment, along with key items designed to aid in post-workout recovery: chilled bottles of Evian water, scented towels, and bananas. 

A team of helpful concierges is ready to assist travelers with everything from directions to restaurant reservations. Guests will receive texts throughout their stay to make sure everything is going well and to see if the concierges can be of service. 

Full-sized bottles of Aesop toiletries are found in every room, and are formulated to work on all hair and skin types, so everyone can enjoy the amenities. 

The Rooms

Sitting area and bedroom in guest accommodations at the Waldorf Astoria, Washington DC

The Waldorf Astoria has 263 guest rooms and suites, each of which is decorated with the hotel’s rich royal blue tones, sparkling chandeliers, and marble bathrooms. 

Suites at the hotel are incredibly opulent, drawing celebrities and political powerhouses looking for a luxurious stay. The Waldorf Townhouse, a 6,300 sq. ft. suite that sprawls over two stories, is the largest suite in the city and features its own private entrance.

We stayed in the Nancy Hanks Suite, a spacious (1,645 sq. ft) apartment-style suite with a separate living room and bedroom. Tucked away within the suite are cozy nooks for working and reading that can be closed off with heavy velvet curtains for privacy (chandeliers in each keep things bright). 

The room’s elegantly classic features have been updated with modern technology, including remote-controlled blackout curtains and a hidden television that rises from the foot of the bed with a touch of a button.

Named after the former Chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts, Nancy Hanks, who was credited with preserving the building, the suite features unique art showcasing the Old Post Office’s history. 


Peacock Alley restaurant at the Waldorf Astoria, Washington DC
Waldorf Astoria Washington DC

A variety of fine dining options make the Waldorf a must-visit destination for DC foodies. 

Peacock Alley

The Waldorf’s stunning lobby, home to the in-house restaurant Peacock Alley, is worth a visit even if you’re not staying in the hotel. 

Set in the hotel’s airy nine-story atrium, the soaring glass-enclosed space lets light shine down on preserved original details from the Old Post Office. The atrium’s decor changes frequently and is particularly spectacular during the holidays and Cherry Blossom season.

Against the beautiful backdrop, the Waldorf’s main restaurant, Peacock Alley serves an eclectic menu all day long that draws in locals for power lunches and post-work dinners.

Start your day off right with a healthy breakfast of fresh-squeezed orange juice and locally-sourced Virginia farm fruit salad, or indulge later in the day with a shared artisanal cheese platter, on-theme postman’s burger, and a cheekily-named cocktail like the Power Suit (gin, French vermouth, sherry, and orange bitters).

If you’re looking for something a little more exclusive to sip on, a glass-enclosed tasting room off of the lobby offers the chance to sample special whiskeys, bourbons, wines, and other hard-to-find liquors. 

The Bazaar By José Andrés

Michelin-starred chef and noted philanthropist José Andrés knows how to draw in a crowd, and his restaurant at the Waldorf, The Bazaar, is no exception. This buzzy eatery is open for breakfast, lunch, afternoon snacks, and dinner, and you’ll need to book far in advance if you want to score a table at a prime time. Hotel guests may luck out with a walk-in table at the bar, which is easier to come by.

The innovative cuisine is worth the wait—expect treats inspired by Andrés’ Spanish heritage, like the tortilla de patas, as well as dishes that give a nod to the location, like “José’s Favorite Waldorf, Salad”. 

Sushi Nakazawa

For a special night out, reserve a seat at the sushi counter or in the dining room at Sushi Nakazawa. The Michelin-starred restaurant offers a 20-course nigiri Omakase set menu that will delight any sushi aficionado. 

The Spa

Two rooms, a massage room and the salt room, at the Spa at Waldorf Astoria, Washington DC
Waldorf Astoria Washington DC

Step into the Waldorf Astoria spa and feel your shoulders instantly drop from around your ears and your stress melt away. The spa features six private treatment rooms, a Himalayan Salt Therapy Room, and The Sanctuary (a pre- or post-treatment area with dimmed lighting, private resting cocoons, soothing water features, snacks, and beverages that eases the transition back to the real world).

Massages are personalized for each guest, with custom scents on offer to enhance the experience. Or, opt for one of the spa’s indulgent services like a Vitamin C Glow body treatment or Oxygen Boost facial. 

Price and How to Book

Room rates start at around $500 per night and can be booked on SmarterTravel Hotels

Editor’s Note: The author of this story was hosted by the Waldorf Astoria, Washington DC. 

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