Cash in Your Points for a Presidential Party in D.C. This January
Between Donald Trump's tweets and Hillary Clinton's emails, the 24-hour news cycle has been working overtime in what has to be the strangest election season in US history. And while today may be the big decision day, some hotels in Washington, D.C. are already looking forward to another important date on the calendar: Inauguration Day.
Regardless of who wins, luxury properties in the nation's capital are aiming to give guests their own presidential parties and personal victories with some pretty extravagant packages the weekend of January 20. At the St. Regis Washington, D.C., for instance, $85,000 will get you four nights in the Presidential Suite, complete with butler service, private afternoon tea and dinner for four and a bottle of Dom Perignon, as well as personalized White House stationery and round-trip airport transfers in a Mercedes-Benz S550.
Looking to spend a bit more and bring your four-legged friend along for the celebration? The Fairmont Washington D.C.'s Presidentially Yours Package clocks in at a whopping $500,000 and includes four nights — for four people and their dog, just like the First Family — in the hotel's Presidential Suite, as well as round-trip flights in a private jet (for four + Fido), home-cooked healthy meals for your pet, a closet stocked with designer clothes from Saks 5th Avenue, daily hair and make-up with Karma by Irwin Gomez, fresh in-room flowers each day, a signature cocktail created for and named after you, an evening reception for 20 with Champagne and Beluga caviar as well as transportation to and from all Inaugural events and parties in a fancy ride. You'll even have access to a 24-hour butler, daily briefings from two of Fairmont's "Presidential Detail" agents and a personal photographer who will document your four days of fun and create a special photo album to commemorate your time there.
And if you have more money than most people can count, you should turn to the JW Marriott Washington, D.C., where $2.5 million — yes, million — will get you four Presidential Suites, 325 additional guest rooms, a craft bourbon barrel tasting, a private viewing party for up to 300 people on the hotel's 12th floor terrace and a $400,000 food and beverage credit for you and all your guests.
All these packages sound like incredible opportunities to ring in the next leader of the free world, but if you're like me, you don't have $2.5 million to burn or 300 close friends to invite. Luckily, you don't have to mortgage your future to stay in style and be part of the action in D.C. If you're considering making a special trip for the Inauguration festivities, here's a look at some properties where you can cash in your points to see the next President — for less. Note that all values listed below have been calculated for a stay from Wednesday, January 18 – Sunday, January 22.
1. Grand Hyatt Washington
You won't even need to take Uber to get to the festivities — after a relaxing spa treatment, a dip in the hotel's pool and a soak in your swanky marble bathtub, you can head over on foot to see the next President get sworn into office. The best part: it'll only cost you 60,000 Hyatt Gold Passport points (15,000 per night) for a four-night stay. This is a great way to maximize the value of your points since the average nightly cost for a room is $694 per night over the weekend, so you'll be getting around 4.6 cents per point in value.
2. Crowne Plaza, The Hamilton — Washington, D.C.
For 140,000 IHG Rewards points, you can stay approximately five blocks from the White House on 14th St NW. Rates start at $685 or 35,000 points per night, giving you a value of about 2 cents per point. Just remember to bring your best winter coat — the outdoor patio at the hotel's 14K Restaurant is open year-round so don't let the cold keep you from the party.
3. The Ritz-Carlton, Pentagon City
Located across the Potomac River in Arlington, Virginia, this property offers everything you need to feel like a world leader with Italian Marble bathrooms, 400 thread-count linens, upscale afternoon tea experiences and the typical level of luxury you can expect from a Ritz-Carlton property. The price tag over Inauguration Weekend comes in at 160,000 Marriott Rewards points, not a bad deal considering rates start at $599 or 40,000 points per night — you'll be getting a value of about 1.5 cents per point, while TPG's current valuations list Marriott Rewards points as being worth 0.9 cents per point.
4. The Ritz-Carlton, Tysons Corner
It's a few more miles away — 11.7 from the center of DC, to be exact — but this Ritz-Carlton property in McLean, Virginia, offers a full-service spa, a Great Room lobby with a fancy fireplace and upscale shopping in the connected Tysons Galleria. Plus, when you return from the massive crowds in the District, you'll be able to enjoy a peaceful view of the Blue Ridge Mountains from your room. The price tag for a four-night stay here is even more appealing at just 120,000 Marriott Rewards points. Rates that weekend start at $362 or 30,000 points per night, giving you a value of 1.2 cents per point.
Where will you be celebrating when the 45th President of the United States takes his or her oath of office? Let us know, below.