First look: Trump gets going on $200M D.C. hotel

(hotel room)

Mr. Trump has come to Washington. And he's building a hotel.

The city's foremost paper, The Washington Post, gives the $200-million hotel a first look today. The 270-room hotel, which breaks ground today, is a conversion of the Old Post Office Pavilion on Pennsylvania Avenue. Trump won approval last June to redevelop the site into a hotel, which is slated to open in 2016.

Further news on the project came forward in September. The hotel’s design nods to America’s European heritage and its references to Romanesque elements, but from a uniquely American perspective. In the 18 months since Trump was selected by the GSA as developer of the landmark, Donald and Ivanka Trump have been working alongside architectural firm Beyer Blinder Belle, interior design consultant HBA, and historic advisor and preservation specialist John Cullinane & Associates to realize the design of Trump International Hotel, The Old Post Office, Washington, D.C.

HBA's Betsy Hughes, who has been instrumental in designing the public areas, guestrooms and conference facilities, said that the interiors are inspired by the strength of the 1899 Richardsonian Romanesque Revival edifice, with its carved stone and detailing. The materials are more muscular than they would have been in France or England, so they juxtaposed the masculinity and stateliness of the building with softer furnishings.

As The Post reports, at an average of 600 square feet, the rooms will be larger than many of the new micro-unit apartments being designed and built in the city. Two presidential suites located in the former offices of the Postmaster General will be much larger, at 3,500 and 5,000 feet.

"The District has many fine and expensive hotels, but we have not had a Paris- or New York-level luxury hotel that caters to the many business executives and wealthy people who visit the nation’s capital," said D.C. Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton.

A press conference with more details about the hotel is scheduled with the Trumps for today. We will update this post with the news, so stay tuned.