If you're visiting the U.S. capital to soak in its abundance of art, history, and culture, why limit yourself to daytime education? Rest your head at Hotel Zena, a feminist-inspired property that is a work of art in and of itself. Below, our full review of this contemporary, art-filled boutique hotel that pays homage to trailblazing women.

What You Need to Know

The Look of Hotel Zena 

You know you're in for a treat the second you pull up to the property, which features a striking exterior mural of two women set amid lush flora created by local artist MISS CHELOVE; it's aptly named "Warrior Guardians."

The art-forward aesthetic continues inside the hotel, which is best described as part art gallery thanks to its impressive collection of specially commissioned works featuring women artists and themes of female empowerment.  For example, there's an expansive mural of Ruth Bader Ginsburg composed of nearly 20,000 hand-painted tampons in homage to the late Supreme Court Justice's commitment to gender equality; a "Talking Sequins" installation featuring 8,000 hand-pinned protest buttons supporting the fight for women's rights in the main restaurant; and the "Wall of Honor," also in the restaurant, which pays tribute to women who were instrumental in the fight for gender equality, including Dolores Huerta, Florence Nightingale, and Katherine Johnson. 

The 191 guest rooms and suites are sleek and modern with artsy touches in the form of murals of Greek goddesses or vibrant paintings and photos, as well as red accent lighting and patterned throw pillows — a fun pop against the soothing neutral color palette of dark grays and light wooden furnishings.

The Vibe at Hotel Zena 

Hip and artsy but approachable (read: not stuffy). Guests are often out and about mingling in the common areas, which include a whimsical bar and lounge space complete with a pink-hued billiard table, the buzzy Figleaf Restaurant, and the rooftop pool and bar. 

Who Will Love Hotel Zena

Art lovers and creative types will especially appreciate a stay at this eclectic property, which is great for couples, solo travelers, and friend groups. 

Who Might Not Love Hotel Zena

Without any kid- or family-specific amenities, Hotel Zena tends to cater more to adults, which means families, especially those with younger children, may be happier elsewhere.

Best Amenity at Hotel Zena

Aside from the gallery-worthy art, it’s a tie between the vibrant all-day Figleaf Restaurant, which dishes out Mediterranean-inspired fare like mezze, grilled halloumi, and Turkish coffee cheesecake, and the seasonal rooftop pool and bar area, which serves up refreshing cocktails with a side of killer views. 

Money Matters

What’s Included at Hotel Zena

Your stay includes Wi-Fi and access to the 24-hour fitness center, Figleaf Restaurant, and Hedy’s Rooftop (open seasonally).

Extra Fees & Costs You Should Know About at Hotel Zena

The hotel charges a mandatory guest amenities fee of $30 per night plus tax. Poolside cabanas are also available to rent for an additional fee. Self-parking costs $27 per car, while valet parking starts at $53 (excluding tax).

How to Get a Deal at Hotel Zena

Check out the property’s offers tab to view the latest deals, which include discounted room rates, food and beverage credits, and complimentary breakfast, among other perks. 

The Sweet Season 

D.C.’s slow season typically takes place in the winter months (January to March). During this time, you can expect the lowest rates on lodging as well as fewer crowds. 

Getting There

In the Neighborhood of Hotel Zena

Hotel Zena is ideally situated between the vibrant 14th Street Corridor and the always-bustling business district. Its central location also puts you within easy walking distance of the Dupont and Logan Circles, U Street (known for its nightlife and dining scenes), the White House, and CityCenterDC, which boasts tons of high-end shops and restaurants. Right outside the property on 14th Street, you’ll find an abundance of eateries, including the woman-owned DUA DC Coffee and the Victorian-inspired Crown & Crow bar. Finally, given the hotel's feminist-inspired messaging, we'd be remiss not to mention that the National Museum of Women in the Arts — which prides itself on being "the world's only major art museum solely dedicated to championing women artists" — is just 12 minutes away on foot. 

Nearest Airport to Hotel Zena

Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport is four miles away. 

Nearest Public Transportation to Hotel Zena

The McPherson Square metro station is a five-minute walk from the hotel. There are also several bus stops nearby. 

The Bottom Line 

For an artful stay near downtown D.C., the buzzy Hotel Zena is your best bet.