A historic escape mid-city, the Morrison-Clark is full of personal touches and interesting details. The inn is an old US Navy property, site of an Army/Navy social club. Before that, it was a Victorian manor house, built in 1864. The inn is equally suited for a solo business traveler or couple looking for romance, and is also about a block from the Washington Convention Center.
The first thing you see from L Street is a large stone, columned porch and a red-tiled roof. When guests enter, the period antiques and marble fireplaces make the space feel like Grandma’s house. Old-style brunches are served on a side porch. The foyer space is part of the original manor house, while the side addition of dormitory-style rooms was added on when it became the Army/Navy club in 1923.
There are 54 rooms total. When guests check in, they are met by a small staff that will remember their names; there are real keys to unlock room doors. The rooms feature neoclassical styling with high ceilings. The 14 suites are either Victorian with period furniture and crystal chandeliers, or French provincial with pine and wicker. Victorian rooms have decorative fireplaces and large balconies over the inn’s front porch, which overlooks L Street.
The inn is elegant but not too fancy, and guests are free to roam about. Old photographs hang around the foyer—one shows General Pershing in the courtyard, another Teddy Roosevelt in the lobby, and yet another JFK and Jackie Kennedy in the lounge. It all comes from its Army/Navy past, which is also a reason that Barbara Bush planted one of the trees in the inn’s front corner and was a fan of the afternoon tea.
Straight back from the front entrance is the Morrison-Clark Restaurant, with lace curtains and floor-to-ceiling windows that look out onto the front porch/patio. The best detail of the inn is its central brick courtyard, surrounded by a U-shape of rooms and lattice work. The feel is quaint, like a peaceful backyard, with a trickling fountain.
Room amenities: Iron and ironing board, armoire, cable TV, terrycloth robes
Hotel amenities: Twice-a-day maid service, overnight shoeshine, fitness room, outdoor pool located four blocks away, garden room and courtyard, on-site restaurant, laundry and dry cleaning, event planning and catering, multilingual staff, mail and courier delivery, clerical services, in-room spa services, complimentary coffee in lobby daily from 5 to 7 am, complimentary Washington Post delivery
Things nearby: Washington Convention Center, Historical Society of Washington, Chinatown, National Museum of Women in the Arts, Penn Quarter restaurants and nightlife, Logan Circle