Local Hotels Renting Suites for Socially-Distant Dining

The Sofitel is located in Lafayette Square in Washington D.C. (Photo courtesy of Sofitel Washington D.C. Lafayette Square)

ALEXANDRIA, VA–When Alexandria resident Paula Moran had a day off of work, she thought to herself, “Well, where am I going to go?” Virginia is still cautious about fully reopening its businesses, and Paula was cautious about walking through any doors that happened to be open.

Then she came across a Washingtonian article about a concept that piqued her interest and her peace of mind: In-Suite Dining.

The Sofitel Hotel and its restaurant Opaline Brasserie, at 806 15th St NW, in Washington D.C. is getting creative with its vacant rooms. In-suite dining is a concept which allows people to dine privately in a hotel room, with the service of a restaurant. At The Sofitel, they allow in-suite dining for individuals or groups of up to six people, at 2.5 hour intervals, with a customized menu selection from Opaline Brasserie. Diners must pay a minimum of $70 for the meal, and then the room comes free.

This is a double bedroom, junior executive suite, one of the spacious suites available for in-suite dining. (Photo courtesy of Sofitel Washington D.C. Lafayette Square)

In-suite dining at The Sofitel is offered every Thursday through Saturday from 5pm to 10pm. (Opaline also has breakfast to-go Monday-Friday 7am-10am, and Saturday-Sunday 7am-11am; Opaline Bar is also open for dinner from 5pm-10pm Wednesday-Saturday.)

Upon entering the hotel, the diners are escorted to their private room, and a wait staff serves them throughout the evening, just as at a traditional restaurant, though without the proximity to other diners. Opaline has created a special French inspired in-suite menu, prepared by Executive Chef Kevin Lalli.

Between guests, each room is thoroughly sanitized.

The in-suite menu is specially prepared by Executive Chef Lalli of Opaline. (Photo courtesy of Sofitel Washington D.C. Lafayette Square)

Diana Bulger, Area Director, Public Relations for The Sofitel, says, “The idea stemmed from just needing to fill our empty rooms. We knew that people wanted to eat out, so we figured out how to do it in a safe, comfortable way.”

This concept has become increasingly popular along the East Coast and it is starting to spark in Alexandria. The restaurant King and Rye will deliver to the hotel The Alexandrian, and many chain hotels, such as The Hilton, Hyatt Centric, and Residence Inn all in Old Town, are available for rent during daytime hours on the new website dayuse.com.

Paula said, “I think it’s a cool concept and one of the creative new ideas that I hope local businesses take advantage of,” as she sifted through her options. She ended up dining at her parents’ house, but she applauds the creativity of this emerging concept.

Businesses are opening, the weather is warming, but innovation is still warmly welcomed to continue.