According to a study, Americans don’t prioritize their self-care to take much needed time off from work — and you know that if you’re Black, it’s even worse. In fact, in 2016, 54 percent of all employees ended the year with unused vacation time. Collectively, that amounted to 662 million vacation days.
But while work and home life can often be too hectic to plan a week-long getaway (sad, but true), sometimes you just need a few days to recharge to feel like yourself again. And that can simply mean a few days of playing tourist in your own city (or another city), enjoying some spa time, ordering room service and just relaxing.
Staycations allow you to unplug from the mundane day-to-day routine, and the Nation’s capital is the perfect city to do just that. Washington DC and the surrounding area (affectionately known as the “DMV”) offer many activities for day trips, including museums, national parks, and small towns to explore. Here are a few tips to having a perfect D.C. staycation — like the true boss you are.
Where To Stay
The St. Gregory Hotel is a newly-renovated, boutique property in DC’s Dupont Circle and it surely is a stunner. From the moment you walk through the hotel and are greeted with friendly faces (tell Solomon the bell hop we said hello), assuring you that you’re in for a treat. Not only does the hotel have an unbeatable location, you’re in the center of the city, so you’re simply footsteps away from some of the city’s best restaurants, shops and attractions. And if you don’t want to venture too far for food, be sure to stop by the hotel’s chic Mediterranean restaurant, Tredici Enoteca for a bite of what you’ll consider to be some of the best food in the bustling area — and that’s saying a lot! Once you’ve settled into your studio or suite, you’ll understand exactly why guests often find it difficult to leave such a welcoming environment — from the people, to the amenities, to the rooms — all making it the perfect background to the DC staycation of your dreams.
Where To Eat
So once you decide to come up for air, you’re going to want to take advantage of all the good food that the district has to offer. Namely, a local gem: Barcelona Wine Bar. Who can beat a great glass of red wine, deliciously prepared Spanish small plates, a chic ambiance and an outdoor patio situation (because those Instagram photos aren’t going to take themselves)? And because of that, Barcelona Wine Bar will do just the trick. Whether it’s brunch, happy hour, or date night, Barcelona Wine Bar’s shared-plate dining and drinking experience is part of what makes the restaurant iconic. Not to mention a vast collection of wines to choose from from around the world that pair with a rotation of farm-to-table tapas, including a light calamari, croquettes, goat cheese with honey and more. It’s safe to say you’re mouth will start watering as you read through the menu. Because this is a local hotspot, thankfully you have two options to choose from: 14th and U, or Wisconsin Avenue in Cathedral Heights.
Where To Pamper
Skin Beauty Bar is located right in the heart of Capitol Hill and is not only Black owned — it transforms a normal spa experience into an elegant yet affordable getaway. Skin Beauty Bar offers everything from nail services to facials to massage treatments, so you can choose from an array of options. Paying a visit to SBB is a quick and effective way to feel renewed after a long day at work.
Where To Play
Thankfully for those who like to go out and explore, DC has no shortage of activities. If you’re interested in history and culture, check out the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History & Culture, or visit both the MLK and Lincoln Memorials. Or if you want to soak up some beautiful nature, step just outside the city limit’s to visit Shenandoah National Park. This park is located in Virginia and has a multitude of great hiking trails and beautiful views. End the day enjoying the city’s thriving nightlife scene at Park at 14th, because you can never go wrong there!