the difference between 5* and 4*

lobby of the Grand Hyatt Washington (c) 2019 by David Ourisman, all rights reserved

I'm in Washington, DC for a family wedding, and we're spending two nights at the Grand Hyatt, Washington, DC. Why the Grand Hyatt? Two reasons ... it's literally across the street from the reception venue, and transportation is being provided from the hotel to the church where the wedding is being held.

As you may be aware, my business is focused on five star, luxury hotels. This stay gives me an opportunity to explain the differences between five- and four-star hotels. Here are some thoughts:

(1) A great value, I booked the Hyatt Privé rate for myself. For the nightly rate of $189, I am also receiving daily breakfast for two and a $100 hotel credit (which entirely paid for last night's dinner in the hotel's restaurant, Cure Bar & Bistro).

(2) The hotel is much larger than the typical luxury hotel, 897 rooms and suites. Guests enter the stunning 12-story lobby seen above. By way of comparison, the Park Hyatt Washington (Grand Hyatt's boutique luxury sister) has just 220 rooms and the Michelin-starred Blue Duck Tavern.

(3) We were upgraded to a Guest Room on the 12th floor with Grand Club privileges. Our room is an efficiently organized 351 sq ft with an attractive contemporary design and, most important, a comfortable bed. The workspace is intelligently designed with easily accessible power plugs and ports, and the internet is free and fast enough to do serious work. The bathroom was small with a single vanity and shower-in-the-tub.

(4) What about the Grand Club? I'm writing this blog from the Club at 7:30 a.m. on Saturday morning. Other Club guests are coming in to enjoy the breakfast
buffet which includes hot items such as scrambled eggs and quiches and a cold buffet spread including the fixings for lox and bagels, and an espresso machine. The selection thoughtfully includes such items as gluten-free muffins. While not pretending to offer the ambiance of a Ritz-Carlton Club Lounge, Grand Club provides a pleasant place to gather with a residential feeling. There is a presentation of snacks mid-day, hors d'ouevres and cocktails at the dinner hour, and a presentation of desserts after dinner.

(5) Who should choose the Grand Hyatt? Grand Hyatt is an obvious choice for business travelers or families with a budget of $200-$250 per night. Extremely well located for tourists, the hotel is just half a mile from the National Mall and the White House ... and atop Metro Center, the hub of Washington's metro system and the intersection of four subway lines. You can get quickly from the Grand Hyatt to most any place in the city

copyright (c) 2019 by Ourisman Travel LLC. All rights reserved. We provide Virtuoso and other Preferred Partner amenities as an affiliate of Brownell, a Virtuoso® Member. If you have comments on this column, or questions about booking travel, email me or visit my website.

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