Monday, April 19, 2010

The Willard

I love to visit The Willard hotel in Washington D.C. It is a fixture in American history and has been the setting of countless potitical meetings.

Abraham Lincoln lived here in the days before his inauguration. Can you imagine? I stopped in my tracks when I saw his hand-written note of praise framed and hanging in a corridor. I just learned that Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. wrote his famous "I Have A Dream" speech while staying at the Willard.

I have my own wonderful memories of the Willard from my dear friend, Erika's wedding. We were friends all through high school and then were roommates for two years at Michigan State. Everything was picture-perfect for her wedding - it was a gorgeous event filled with family and friends and after a night of celebrating, we retired to historic luxury. I loved it!

So a few years ago, when another friend (Jamie, another friend from college) asked where should we meet while I was in D.C., I proposed tea at the Willard! We relaxed in our own little sitting area (within what is called "Peacock Alley") and could talk in peace for hours with hot tea, scones and sweets. It was girl heaven.

Our favorite part was selecting our tea. They present a velvet-lined chest filled with glass test tubes of fine tea. The attendant uncorks each choice and offers you a chance to smell it and decide. Jaime and I ended up smelling every single choice (why not?) and then, although they all smelled divine, I had the guts to ask if they had English Breakfast. When she said yes, Jamie asked if they had Earl Grey. Seriously. We giggled to ourselves afterward that although "Vanilla Orchid" sounded (and smelled) great, we really liked the classics. Ha! I wouldn't change a thing. The next time you are planning a reunion with an old friend, why not have tea at a fancy hotel? You'll make memories that will last forever.

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