Welcoming worshippers of design, food and music (preferably all three), former Neoclassical church The Line DC will make you a believer with its modern interiors, four restaurants and playlist-pumping independent radio station: praises be that these hallowed halls are now open on more than just a Sunday. Just outside, the lively Adams Morgan neighbourhood boasts a clutch of pop-up restaurants, just-opened bars and well-loved flea markets. Now to that, we’ll say amen…
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A welcome bouquet of blooms from the Little Shop of Flowers
Noon. Earliest check-in, 3pm. If you arrive early, the hotel’s happy to store your luggage while you take advantage of the restaurant, bar, or gym.
Double rooms from $135.15, excluding tax at 14.95 per cent. Please note the hotel charges an additional resort fee of $26.44 per room per night on check-in.
Rates don’t usually include breakfast ($25 a person a day) or the resort fee ($21 a room a day), which covers a workout class a stay, access to the wellness centre, priority reservations at the hotel’s eateries and more.
The Line has, believe it or not, its own radio station – Full Service Radio – broadcast live from a glass-windowed booth in the lobby. It’s run by Heritage Radio alumnus Jack Inslee, and guests can tune into the stream of playlists, podcasts and talk shows from their rooms. There’s also a super-sleek fitness centre – kitted out with all the latest treadmills, elliptical trainers and weights – open 24-hours-a-day.
At the hotel
A 24-hour gym, free WiFi throughout. In rooms: 55” TV, minibar, Nespresso coffee-making kit, radio, Line Hotel toiletries, air-conditioning.
Our favourite rooms
It’s hard to pick just one room as our favourite: each has been meticulously curated, furnished with Persian rugs, burnished brass light-fittings and vintage furniture lovingly sourced from local flea markets. Every room has a miniature library stocked with hand-picked tomes, plus up to 14 pieces of original artwork, from paintings to old-school photographs. If we had to choose (go on, you’ve twisted our arm), we’d favour any of the higher-floor rooms for their Instagram-worthy views, or the Monument View Master Suite for its private, panoramic terrace.
Pack a pair of headphones for tuning in to Full Service Radio, and something suitably regal for lobby-lounging – this is a Neoclassical church, after all.
Please note that the hotel’s common areas are wheelchair-accessible, but the rooms aren’t.
Little ones are welcome, but there’s not much to entertain children – this hotel’s best suited to you and your beloved. The hotel can provide baby cots, changing mats, highchairs and socket covers on request.
Well there are quite a few to pick from… We’d go for the one-table, 10-seater Spoken English for a more special evening.
Match the menus in understated American style (blue jeans and blazers) with a soupçon of Asian flair through monochrome and minimal lines.
Gourmandes, listen up: the Line has a staggering four restaurants to choose from. North meets south at A Rake’s Progress, where chef Spike Gjerde uses locally-sourced ingredients to recreate the tastes of Virginia. At the intimate stand-up Spoken English restaurant (the Line’s interpretation of a tasting-menu experience), the chefs whip up an Asian-street-food-inspired menu. American classics are on the menu at all-day joint Brothers and Sisters, where a raw bar, pastries and fresh sandwiches are our top picks. Finally, there’s the Cup We All Race 4 (open daily until 8pm), a coffee bar dishing up Counter Culture Coffee, wholegrain bakes and house-pressed juices. For breakfast, feast on a spread of eggs, bacon, buttermilk biscuits, fresh yoghurt and the wickedly indulgent crab Benedict.
A Rake’s Bar (run by Corey Polyoka) celebrates local distillers, ingredients and the easy traditionalism of the deep south. Try a Maryland cider or regionally brewed farm beer. Brothers and Sisters also acts as the lobby bar and serves up American-inspired cocktails with a hint of Japanese flavour – ask for one of their long, fruity numbers. Both are open all week, and later at the weekend.
A Rake’s Progress serves dinner daily until 11pm (later, plus lunch, at the weekend). Brothers and Sisters is open daily 6.30am–midnight. Spoken English is open daily 5pm–midnight. The late-night lobby menu starts at midnight and ends in the early hours.
The 24/7 room service menu features tempting treats including avocado toast, burgers, and bowls of hot congee.
Situated in the buzzing Adams Morgan neighbourhood, the Line DC takes pole position on leafy Euclid Street, a half-hour stroll from the White House.
The nearest airport is Ronald Reagan National, six miles (20 minutes’ drive) from the hotel. The airport operates flights to New York, Miami and Los Angeles. Dulles International Airport is an hour away by car; flights arrive here from major destinations around the world. The hotel can organise transfers from both for around US$143 one-way from Ronald Reagan National and US$198 from Dulles International. Flights to both airports can be organised by the Smith24 Travel team.
Union Station (a 15-minute drive from the hotel) is a major rail hub along the Eastern Seaboard for Amtrak. It is also a stop on Maryland’s regional MARC train, which travels to Baltimore.
You’ll need to get an International Driver’s Permit to hire a car in the US, but driving in Washington DC is notoriously difficult in any case, due to the city’s complicated grid of one-way streets. You’re better off hailing cabs, taking public transport, walking or cycling. If you do arrive by car, valet parking is available onsite for $54 a day.
You’ll feel you know Washington’s Metro well by the time you check out; not least because the the Line’s room decor – in red, blue, yellow and green – corresponds with the route map’s colours. Aside from trendsetting, the Metro is also a zippy and generally reliable way of getting around the city.
Worth getting out of bed for
As its capital city, Washington DC is the home of American democracy: spend a few politically-minded hours examining the Constitution, Declaration of Independence and other historic documents at the National Archives, go for a tour of the Capitol and act out your favourite scenes from Homeland with the White House as a backdrop. The Washington Monument is a must-see (well, the city is named after this most famous of presidents, after all), as are the Lincoln and Jefferson Memorials. Pop into the various Smithsonian museums to see treasures such as the Hope Diamond, the Spirit of Saint Louis and Julia Child’s kitchen. Closer to the hotel, take a turn around the Phillips Collection for an impressive array of Impressionist art – including Renoir’s Luncheon of the Boating Party – in a converted Dupont Circle mansion. Be sure to visit the Collection’s Rothko Room, a tiny space lined with the painter’s works. If you’ve been seduced by the views from your hotel room, visit the main event: the 18th-century Washington National Cathedral is the second-largest in the US, and well worth a trip for its magnificent stained-glass windows. While you’re in the Adams Morgan neighbourhood, swing by local institution Idle Time Books, which is full of second-hand and out-of-print reads. Browse the knick-knack and vintage shops on the surrounding streets; Urban Dwell is a particular favourite on the Columbia Road, and sells home decor, clothes and kitsch accessories.
You’re spoilt for choice at the Line, but it would be criminal not to sample some of the local eateries: try Mintwood Place just down the road, a French-American, farmhouse-style tavern serving on-point roasted duck, hangar steak and a divinely creamy mushroom risotto. A hip bistro with a Caribbean influence, Tail Up Goat on Adams Mill Road is a joyful joint with an adventurous menu of salt-roasted beets, whey-braised goat and lamb ribs. Nose around the Dupont Circle for more great restaurants, including Komi, a seriously slick hub that’s in-demand for good reason: have the 12-dish tasting menu, which includes their many famous seafood creations.
If you’re into simple, well-made coffee without the pompous extras, you’ll find yourself in heaven at Tryst, a city-centre coffee bar that doesn’t take itself too seriously. Curl up on a printed chesterfield with a steaming hot latte, and stay here from brunch (the buttermilk waffles are write-home-about good) until happy hour (anyone for a ‘painkiller’ cocktail?).
Whisky (and whiskey) fans should head straight to the Jack Rose Dining Saloon, where the walls are lined with more than 2,000 bottles of the amber distillate. They serve food too, so you could hole up here long enough to sample every vintage (well, nearly).
Every hotel featured is visited personally by members of our team, given the Smith seal of approval, and then anonymously reviewed. As soon as our reviewers have returned from this church-set luxury hotel and unpacked their lobby-made mixtapes and White House memorabilia, a full account of their city break in Washington DC will be with you. In the meantime, to whet your wanderlust, here's a quick peek inside the Line DC in the United States’ capital…
From the moment you walk through the enormous, copper doors of the Line DC, you know you’re in a praiseworthy place – original features of this former neoclassical church have been kept and repurposed for the building’s new life as a luxury hotel. The main building is taken up by the expansive lobby: marvel at the 60-foot-high vaulted ceilings, illuminated by a brass light feature made using pipes from the organ; take a (literal) pew on the polished-mahogany church benches; and examine the salvaged pages from well-thumbed hymnals. Look up and you’ll see a vision: mouthwatering cuts of meat cooking on a spit, suspended high above in the church gallery, a testament to the hotel’s heavenly gastronomy. There’s also a florist selling fresh blooms, and the hotel’s community-run independent radio station, where decks are spun from within a glass booth.
You’ll find the Line’s many restaurants and bars (six, to be precise) in this cavernous architectural intrigue, which dates back to 1912, but rooms are housed in a sleek, new seven-story building at the back of the church. No less impressive, they’re masterpieces of modern simplicity, made homes-away-from-home with small touches, from curated micro-libraries to collections of original artwork.
Whenever you book a stay at a Smith hotel or villa, we’ll invite you to review it when you get back. Read what other Smith members had to say in Line DC’s Guestbook below.
Absolutely everything this unique hotel had to offer.
Stayed on 28 Mar 2019
The location, food, events and room.
Stayed on 31 Dec 2018
Have already reviewed hotel with them personally some time ago but here we go again. Everything was lovely! Loved the quirkines, lots of unusual but tasteful touches and staff friendly and efficient. We did one disappointing experience at dinner on our last night. The service wasn't up to scratch – I have relayed this to the hotel – which they have apologised for so all good.
ByCarole and Bob, BlackSmith
Stayed on 5 Sep 2018
Super-friendly and helpful staff. Waiters kept the bar open for us until 3 am, although it was due to close at 2 am. Quiet, comfortable and cozy room with a bunch of fresh flowers on the desk. Beautiful and practical furniture, with USB power outlets in the desk and a radio that dubs as a Bluetooth speaker. Most importantly, this is a hotel that makes a big effort to integrate into the local community at Adams Morgan, by providing an open space to local residents and actively encouraging hotel guests to discover the neighbourhood and its shops, artists, restaurants and clubs. The hotel provides guests with its own beautiful broshure about what Adams Morgan has to offer, and that's a lot. I liked Urban Dwell, a really cool gift shop just around the corner. Perry's restaurant and bar is an Institution in DC and also around the corner. For dancing, try Heaven and Hell Club, which is three blocks away from the hotel.
Staff without tatoos. A pampering spa. Automatic collection of guest's shoes for shoe shining. Branded shampoo. Convenience food. Elevator music. Overpriced wine. A glitzy luxury hotel that keeps its doors shut to anyone without a platinum credit card.