Washington, D.C., is undoubtedly home to many historic moments in our nation’s history, but is also home to unique shopping opportunities, neighborhoods and restaurants that locals swear by. From vibrant speakeasies to sprawling gardens lining a mansion museum, there are plenty of things to do in D.C., especially if you hope to avoid crowds and other tourist attractions.
As we prepare for the upcoming American College of Emergency Physicians’ (ACEP) annual Scientific Assembly, we compiled a list of a few of our favorite D.C. activities:
- The Gibson
Nestled in the heart of D.C., right off 14th street, stands the Gibson, D.C.’s largest speakeasy serving prohibition-era cocktails. With only enough space for 50 guests, the Gibson hides behind an unmarked door that leads to a dimly lit room and a hospitable environment. This prohibition era-themed bar employs knowledgeable and friendly mixologists ready to guide you through their small drink menu. As you sip on a hand-crafted cocktail, make sure to take in the scenery because tables have a strict two-hour maximum time limit. One of a few D.C. speakeasies, The Gibson is tough to find but well worth a trip.
- Hillwood Estate, Museum & Gardens
A gorgeous mansion located northwest of Washington, D.C., Marjorie Merriweather Post purchased the Hillwood Estate in 1955 with the vision of soon transforming her estate into a museum to inspire and educate the public. Located on 25 acres of land, Post transformed her property into various serene gardens surrounding the house, welcoming the public to enter her mansion filled with a broad collection of Russian imperial art as well as a renowned eighteenth-century French decorative art collection. Opened to the public in 1977, Hillwood Estate offers visitors the chance to escape the city for a moment while also being immersed in European culture through Post’s large art collection.
- Baked and Wired
A small family-owned bakery located in Georgetown that locals swear by, Baked and Wired offers patrons the Georgetown cupcake experience without the lines. Recognized for their phenomenal coffee and baked goods, Baked and Wired still remains a secret, must-visit spot for all visitors. The signature “cakecups” have a variety of fun flavors and designs, making every order a unique one and causing you to want to come back for more. Offering gluten free and vegan options, this bakery is sure to satisfy a whole family’s sweet tooth.
- Shopping in Georgetown
Georgetown, a quaint town right outside of the nation’s capital, is considered D.C.’s most historic neighborhood. Established in 1751, the cobblestone roads sprawl throughout the waterfront city, offering tourists and locals alike a unique shopping and dining experience. Home to a myriad of locally-owned restaurants, boutiques and antique shops, Georgetown is also a wonderful place to just walk around and enjoy the 18th and 19th century architecture. Most of the shops line the streets along M Street and Wisconsin Ave.
- Brunch at the Founding Farmers
D.C. is known for its plethora of unique dining opportunities, some of which come with a long line and a crowded dining experience. Founding Farmers might be a popular place for locals as well as visitors, but it is worth booking a table for. With farm-inspired American food and drink, Founding Farmers was created by local farmer families dedicated to offering farm fresh cuisine straight from the source. Presenting patrons with the choice of enjoying their meals at a few different environments, from their famously handcrafted community farm dining tables and the mezzanine’s silo-shaped booths to more intimate seating arrangements, Founding Farmers offers a different feel in each room. With a 3 Star Certified Green Restaurant honor, one can trust that they are not only getting a delicious homemade meal sourced from local farmers but are also dining in an eco-friendly establishment.
I hope while attending ACEP you will learn more about healthcare industry trends impacting emergency physicians and also have the opportunity to explore some of D.C.’s best kept secrets.