If planning a family visit to Washington, D.C. you’ll find a lot of accommodation options aimed at families, but sometimes the desires of the parents tend to be outweighed by the needs of their family, unless of course you are staying at the Mandarin Oriental, Washington, D.C. The Mandarin Oriental offers a high quality stay, reminiscent of those hotel stays before kids, but with facilities catering towards your family’s needs.
Mandarin Oriental, Washington, D.C. Welcome Gift
When we arrived, the doorman assisted us inside and offered all three of our kids a cute stuffed GUND animal to keep. Even my 9-year old daughter, who thinks she’s too old for kid’s stuff, loved this gesture. The animals proudly took prominence in our kids’ free time while in their room. It may seem like a small thing but the impact was felt.
Mandarin Oriental, Washington, D.C. Room Facilities
Traveling with young kids can mean a lot of extra gear you need to bring but you can rest assured that the Mandarin Oriental, Washington, D.C. has some of your basics covered. When making your reservation you can request a crib in your room at no extra cost. The hotel has both full-size as well as pack-n-play cribs and if requested, housekeeping can have your crib set-up and ready for use when you arrive (important if you are arriving after a little one’s bedtime). Families with older kids (or larger size like our family of five) can book adjoining rooms, giving kids and parents their own space to unwind after a day in the city, plus the extra bathroom and TV come in handy.
The Mandarin Oriental, Washington, D.C. offers kid-friendly TV in the form of Nickelodeon, Cartoon Network and movies on demand, but you’ll also find a DVD player hooked up to the TV in your room. Having your own DVD player means you can play your child’s favourite Dora DVD or your own family favourite movies from home. If you forget your DVDs, you can borrow some movie favourites from the Mandarin Oriental, Washington, D.C.’s free DVD library at the front desk.
Mandarin Oriental, Washington, D.C. Family Dining
When dining at the Mandarin Oriental, Washington, D.C., you’ll find room service also keeps kids in mind, offering standard fare on the children’s menu; however, unlike many hotels offering kids menus, the Mandarin Oriental doesn’t skimp on quality. My son’s cheeseburger was cooked to his request and my daughter’s noodles were made with real cheddar, not American cheese. If needed, the room service menu also has baby food and simple toddler items like peanut butter and jam sandwiches available.
We had the chance to enjoy dinner at the Sou’Wester, one of three restaurants within the Mandarin Oriental. My oldest daughter, whose taste is a little more sophisticated than most children’s menus, was pleased to see steak and fries were on the kid’s menu. The steak was a wonderful cut of meat too, juicy and tender to cut; it looked like a steak I would even enjoy eating.
Although we had no need for them on our visit, guests can request a high chair or booster seat in the restaurants. If you are enjoying in-room dining (sometimes a better option with tired kids), you can also request a high chair for your room, which is a nice touch.
Should your family travel budget allows, the Tai Pan Club Level is a great option, providing continental breakfast, snacks and drinks throughout the day as well as other superb features.
Mandarin Oriental, Washington, D.C. Swimming Pool
Swimming pools are a popular facility when families are choosing a vacation hotel and the Mandarin Oriental, Washington, D.C., has a beautiful pool on the ground floor. Although it is designated as a lap pool, families are more than welcome to enjoy the pool just for fun. There are lane markers so your family can hang out in the pool without interrupting guests who wish to swim laps. The floor to ceiling windows offer a lot of natural light, with loungers in case you don’t feel like swimming with the kids but want to keep an eye on them (kids under 16 are not allowed in the pool area without a guardian).
Mandarin Oriental, Washington, D.C. Location
You can’t beat the location when it comes to a family destination hotel. The National Mall, with its museums and monuments, is just a 10-minute walk away, as is the Smithsonian Metro stop should you wish to travel further within the city limits. Having a hotel close by is a must when you’re walking tired kids home after a busy day exploring.
Mandarin Oriental, Washington, D.C. Service
All these features make the Mandarin Oriental, Washington, D.C. a great family-friendly hotel but what really made an impression on us was the staff. Most higher-end hotels won’t turn families away from staying with them but their attitude toward kids can be very discouraging. You won’t find that problem at the Mandarin Oriental, Washington, D.C.
The staff talked to the kids, greeting them in the hallway, listening to them when they ordered at the restaurant. The kids were treated as guests too versus invisible entities. This made the kids feel special which of course made us feel great. When you’re on vacation with your kids, you are ALL on vacation, not just the parents, and I love that the Mandarin Oriental, Washington, D.C. understands that.