Riggs Washington DC

<p>It&rsquo;s not every day a 19th-century Romanesque Revival bank building in Washington&rsquo;s Penn Quarter district reopens as a hotel, especially one as stylish as Riggs. It&rsquo;s another sign of a new era for the nation&rsquo;s capital &mdash; there&rsquo;s more character here than in all of D.C.&rsquo;s hotels circa 2000 put together.</p> <p>It starts with the well-preserved bones of the stately old bank, but this is no mere restoration &mdash; they&rsquo;ve taken liberties, using the city&rsquo;s history as their inspiration, and the result adds a welcome note of playfulness to the elegance you expect from a Washington D.C. luxury hotel. The rooms, for their part, don&rsquo;t exactly scream &ldquo;bank&rdquo; &mdash; they&rsquo;re much too colorful and richly detailed for that. They&rsquo;re a touch Parisian, just like D.C. itself, with their oak flooring, marble baths, and jewel-toned colors, and that&rsquo;s even more true of the signature suites, each one named for a different First Lady, which add antique-style furnishings (and, in one case, a piano). And the public spaces are just as romantic, from the towering columns of Caf&eacute; Riggs, overseen by Momofuku alum Patrick Curran, to the Rooftop at Riggs, with its panoramic views of Penn Quarter, and the intimate, subterranean Silver Lyan bar, the first American venture by the London-based cocktail wizard Ryan Chetiyawardana.</p>