When it was completed in 1866, this historic, four-story, marble building served as the capital’s general post office and tariff building for an area that was largely a developing mishmash of big government and small-town buildings. Hard to imagine now. In 2015, the Monaco is celebrating its 13th year as one of the city’s top hotels, in the heart of D.C.’s hottest neighborhood, surrounded by wondrous museums, like the Smithsonian American Art/National Portrait Gallery, and trendy restaurants such as Zaytinya and Hill Country Barbecue Market. Ask for an F St. or 7th St.-facing Monte Carlo room (525 sq. ft.) for best views; or a first floor guest room if quiet is preferred (some guests call this “the basement,” because it is nearly subterranean.) Interior rooms overlook the large courtyard, where Poste restaurant and bar patrons sometimes get loud.
- Elise Hartman Ford