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  1. Location and Rates for Tonight (Note: DC Grand Hyatt tacks on a ridiculous $22.99 daily "destination fee") - Website If you're coming into DC to stay, or looking for a staycation, you could do a lot worse than the Grand Hyatt, located on H Street NW between 10th and 11th Streets. This weekend, I found a room for $107 (yes, $107, but it was actually $129.99 with the destination fee) for Saturday and Sunday nights. Upon checking in, I gave the receptionist $10, and said, "Because you have to work during such a nice day." I wasn't expecting it, but he upgraded us from a Queen to a King, overlooking the atrium, and having one of very few balconies (although the balconies are for decoration only: You cannot open the sliding-glass doors to access them, understandably - you can see what few there are in the final photo). The Grand Hyatt is a really nice, centrally located hotel to explore downtown DC, and it merits 4 stars; it also merits a lawsuit to eliminate their "destination fees." Jul 11, 2019 - "Washington, DC Is Suing To Stop a Ridiculous Hotel Pricing Practice" by Josh Barro on nymag.com Room 849: --- Pro-Tips: * If you need alcohol, forget the hotel. Walk the 1 1/2 blocks to the Mercato at Centrolina in Palmer Alley, and buy a bottle of wine. * The best lunch, by far, within walking distance is the amazing Piccolina (also part of Centrolina, across the street from it in Palmer Alley). * Don't waste your money on Momofuku or Cure Bar & Bistro - head to Centrolina or Piccolina for a truly special culinary experience. * The Ford's Theater Museum is easy walking distance, has no mandatory admission, and is a better museum than you might think.
  2. Did you know Starbucks owned Teavana? Well they do, and they're closing them all: "Starbucks' Teavana Stores Are the Latest Casualty at the Mall" by Tonya Garcia on marketwatch.com
  3. You read all these horror stories about Starbucks moving in, and forcing independent businesses to shutter, but you rarely hear it from the businesses themselves. I'd be very curious to hear about this type of thing from someone who has actually endured it. Same goes with Panera Bread, etc. It *does* seem like in expensive rent districts, these are the types of places you wind up with - why, exactly, is this? Are they actually making money, or are they loss leaders used for advertising? To Joel about Peet's (who is elbowing their way into town) - you're right, the coffee here is nothing special. It's "less bad" than Starbucks, I'll give it that, but that's about all I'll say.
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