Cities to Watch: Washington, D.C.

Insights» Cities To Watch

July 1, 2018by Patrick Batu

Our nation’s capital is one of the most appreciated historical places in the country. From the cherry blossoms to the museums, Washington, D.C. is a location anyone can enjoy. Nested between Maryland and Virginia on the Potomac River, the District of Columbia is known for neoclassical monuments and buildings (including the Capitol, White House and Supreme Court), world-class museums (many of which are free) and renowned performing-arts venues such as the Kennedy Center.

Washington has served as home for the country’s presidents and some of the most influential political figures of our nation’s history. Named in honor of President George Washington, the city was founded in 1871 as the nation’s capital and has become a melting pot of cultures and treasured historical memories.

The city continues to grow and was recently named one of the top 10 most prosperous cities in the United States. Not only does the district offer top-rated school districts, nearby wine country and trendy shops, it also has the vibe of a big city without the overwhelming hustle and bustle.

Memorials and Historical Landmarks
The list of must-see landmarks is truly endless. You’ll want to start at the National Mall — it’s an open park in downtown Washington and is the prime location for concerts, festivals and presidential inaugurations. Two more popular tourist attractions to check out are the Lincoln Memorial and the U.S. Capitol building. South of the White House are the Washington Monument and Jefferson Pier. Don’t forget about the National World War II Memorial, the Korean War Veterans Memorial and Vietnam Veterans Memorial.

Museums
The city has no shortage of museums. The most visited museum is the National Museum of Natural History on the National Mall. The Smithsonian Institution is chartered by Congress, which maintains the majority of Washington’s official museums and galleries. Since the U.S. government partially funds these establishments, its collections are open to the public and free of charge. Some of the popular Smithsonian entities are the National Air and Space Museum, the National Museum of African American History and Culture, and the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden.

Dining
The nation’s capital is one of the country’s hottest restaurant scenes. An array of cultures and a variety of options are available at every price point. Ambar Capitol Hill has an all-you-can-eat brunch and is vegetarian friendly. Joe’s Seafood Prime Steak & Stone Crab is a stellar dinner option that will not disappoint — make sure you try the lobster deviled eggs as an appetizer and key lime pie for dessert. For rustic American fare, grab a seat at Founding Farmers, a farmer-owned restaurant that focuses on quality ingredients sourced from family farms whenever possible.

Entertainment
Washington is home to some great sports teams: the Nationals, the Wizards, the Redskins, and the 2018 Stanley Cup Champions, the Capitals. Be sure to check schedules and attend a game. The district’s four NCAA Division teams have a great presence and large following. If you’re not a big sports fan, jump on board a trolley or walking tour and learn more about the sightseeing hot spots.

Nightlife
From underground dance clubs to industrial-chic spaces, nightlife hotspots are abundant. Restaurant Marvin is a historical venue that serves soul food with a Belgian twist and has an upstairs dance floor. U Street Music Hall is a great hideaway music venue for underground artists and even some big-name acts. The recently redeveloped southwest waterfront, District Wharf, is a great place to take a stroll, grab dinner and a drink on a patio and then catch a show at The Anthem, a new music venue and auditorium that can accommodate up to 6,000 concertgoers.