I will be spending a week in DC in a few weeks and am trying to pick a property at which to stay. I will have business downtown near Foggy Bottom 2 days of the week and out in Arlington 1 day while the rest I'll be free to spend with my family (wife & 5yo). I can take the Metro to everywhere I need to go, so I'm more concerned about a place that is convenient for my wife and daughter while I'm not around as long as it's near a Metro stop.
Fed Rate is the same for pretty much all of the properties, but varies a little in what you get for the price i.e. Washington Marriott it will get you Concierge Level, whereas others don't. I'm Gold so I should get lounge access anyway.
I'm thinking about the Crystal Gateway Marriott, but I wanted to solicit other suggestions and opinions.
7, if you want a convenient metro location and a nice hotel with a good concierge lounge, either the Crystal Gateway Marriott or the Crystal City Marriott will both work for you. The Crystal Gateway is pretty much a conference hotel, whereas the CC Marriott is much smaller. If you have a car with you, both charge for parking. Also consider the Renaissance Capital View which is still relatively new and very nice, or the RI right next door if you want a little more space. These two hotels have a convenient shuttle to the metro stop 5 minutes away. DC is a great city.
I found this link that might help you out.
Crystal Gateway would also be my recommendation. It's a good solid Marriott. From the lobby you can access a walkway path that leads to the Crystal City Metro Station and the Underground Shops at Crystal City. One metro stop away (Pentagon City) is a large shopping mall with many stores and restaurants that your wife and child would probably enjoy. The only negative would be having to pay for parking which you would encounter with most hotels in the area.
Northern Virginia is my home and where I work so I've had friends and family as well as numerous co-workers ask about hotels there. The Crystal Gateway Marriott is usually on my list (unless they want to stay in Old Town Alexandria). I haven't had anyone stay at the Renaissance yet.
I recommend the Crystal Gateway Marriott, however, they're all so close together that it's only a short walk between them. The Crystal Gateway is close to the metro which can take you most anywhere. As vaboywnder said, the Pentagon City Mall is one stop away and is an up-scale shopping mall your wife and daughter might enjoy. You can keep going on the metro and get into DC very quickly to see the National Mall and Smithsonian museums.
For you planning, if you've never been to DC in July / August, realize that it gets very humid and hot and can be quite miserable at times so be sure to have plenty of indoor options as well as walking around outside. Enjoy your trip...there is plenty to do and see.
DC is one of those places, like New York City, where there are so many choices it all comes down to what kind of experience you're looking for. Here's another data dump to consider: Washington Marriott at Metro Center or JW Marriott in DC? Which is better? Also, here are some (potentially unhelpful) observations of the Crystal Gateway: Crystal Gateway Marriott But, if you have specific questions, just lemme know.
Also, if you're going to be in DC, consider spending some time surfing through this: Favorite Washington DC Restaurants? There's something for everyone if you scroll through.
Hi 7 -
Great questions and thank you nuhusker, vaboywnder, rwesrussell and ssindc for your contributions!
In addition to what other members have said, we also recommend that you check out the hotel pages for Crystal Gateway Marriott here and the Crystal City Marriott here. You can also see the reviews other members have given those hotels within those pages.
Lastly, if you head over to our Marriott Hotel Reviews section, you’ll have access to all of our hotels in the DC area in one place for you to browse through. You can see how other members have rated and reviewed the hotels.
I hope that helps. Let us know if you have any other questions!
I like the ability to add reviews because there are just too many reviews in TripAdvisor and several of the Marriott Insiders reviews provide much better insight for Marriott Rewards members (notes on Concierge Lounge, upgrades, etc.). I've been writing reviews for all my recent stays and hopefully people will find them useful (albeit a tad wordy) and add their own reviews too.
Sorry for lack of participation in my own thread. I posted right before leaving for a vacation and I didn't take my laptop.
Thanks for the input and we have decided to go with the Crystal City Gateway. We won't have a car so parking fees don't matter, and the convenience to the Metro and the mall will be great.
I would be curious to hear what you think of Crystal City Gateway Marriott. I meant to post on this, but I stayed at the Crystal City Marriott (different hotel but really just across the street). While I did not love the hotel, I thought the location was very convenient. It is connected to the metro and it is a quick 5 minute ride to get to the National Mall and Crystal City Marriott (on some weekends) is half the price of DC Marriotts. The Marriott at Metro Center near Penn Quarter is very nice.
The Crystal City Marriott has a lackluster Concierge Lounge, but their fitness center is very nice.
The location is convenient like you said. The room is just ok. I was disappointed to find that it didn't have a mini-fridge or safe though.
The concierge lounge is a bit disappointing. Last night at dinner time they had an offering of mashed potatoes, or baked potatoes. Today was a little better as they had sort of DIY BBQ sliders. Also, they only have an honor bar. I don't really drink much, but it's nice to have a free bar available.
It's funny, that I've read lots of people complaining on here about Marriott's and the quality of the lounges and stuff and didn't really see the problem. Now, I've come to realize that's because I'd been staying exclusively in Asia. This summer in the US I've not seen any property that came close to even the worse I stay I had in Asia in terms of service/elite benefits.
I haven't stayed at many Marriotts outside of the US, but many US Concierge Lounges are not that great. I thought the food at JW Marriott LA LIVE was pretty good. I also liked the food at the San Francisco Marriott Union Square--at least when compared to most Marriott Concierge Lounges.
I didn't like the Crystal City Marriott Concierge Lounge and I also really did not like the one at the Philadelphia Renaissance Airport though I think they are updating that hotel so maybe it will be better in the future.