Phoenix Park Hotel

The Irish-American owner has sprinkled Irish charms throughout this nearly 90-year-old property (with an adjacent pub) in Capitol Hill.

By Andrea Sachs, Monday, Feb 28, 2011, 12:00 PM

A bedroom at the Phoenix Park Hotel.

(Courtesy Phoenix Park Hotel)

Phoenix Park Hotel

About this Hotel

Price From $109

’Hood Capitol Hill, which has a lock on the landmarks, letting visitors easily connect the dots between the Capitol, Union Station, and the National Mall’s monuments and Smithsonian museums. The area hums with activity during the day, when government workers are busy bees and tourists madly try to squeeze it all in before closing time. However, the area quiets down in the evening, once folks have loosened their ties and the laces on their walking shoes.

The Vibe The hotel’s owner, a proud Irish-American, brings a touch of his ancestral land to these shores, creating a country-estate aesthetic in an urban space. Irish charms are sprinkled throughout the nearly 90-year-old property: The hotel’s moniker honors the eponymous park in Dublin; toiletries are made by Galánta, a Celtic company; and the in-room Irish breakfast tea comes courtesy of Bewley’s, the country’s leading coffee and tea company. The artwork further enhances this fantasy trip to the Emerald Isle, with paintings of castles and foxhunts, and a glass case that displays gleaming Waterford crystal.

Rooms The 149 rooms are as jubilant as a cloudless day in County Clare, due in part to the color wheel of gold, burgundy, and green. Some of the fabric and wall patterns might be dizzying, but tuck yourself into the snow-white quilt and the vertigo will subside. In addition, the hotel prides itself on its unexpected “surprises and delights,” some of which guests can find by the bed (a step stool) and in the closet (an umbrella and a robe made in you-know-what country).

Plus The attached restaurant and pub, the Dubliner, brings in crowds with its Irish brews, traditional plates (fish and chips, corned beef and cabbage), and live Irish music every night. For a quieter meal, order room service from the same menu. Later, work it off in the 24-hour fitness center.

Minus When the hotel books up, guests may end up in one of the less desirable rooms that measure a tight 235 square feet.

Free Wi-Fi? Yes.

Credit Cards Accepted: AmEx, Discover, MC, Visa.

Details During summer sales, the rate can drop to $89 a night. Rooms typically run from $109 to $119, with suites in the $200 and up range.