When people with class look for a place to kick back a few drinks and relax, they don’t want to go just anywhere. No. Instead, they go to some of the most stylish and luxurious places in the city. D.C., known for its politics and history, has some of the swankiest bars in the country. These bars cater to some of  D.C.’s most elite and most famous, powerful personalities, so you can bet they don’t slack with it comes to quality and expense. Here’s some of the most swanktastic bars in D.C.

1. The Rye Bar

Nestled into the luxurious Rosewood Hotel, the Rye Bar offers one of the most intimate, and relaxed settings in town. Its swankiness comes not only from the back-lit, onyx bar, but also from the offerings of its vintage selection. It’s fitting that the bar should be in D.C., considering it takes many of its attributes from George Washington and Thomas Jefferson; both being highly involved in the whiskey business of their time.

Whiskey isn’t the only drink selection offered, however. What kind of swanky bar would it be without offering some more sophisticated drinks. Take, for instance, its signature Barrel-Aged Manhattan; a delicate mix of bourbon, maraschino liqueur, vermouth, and Angostura bitters. This, coupled with some of the city’s rarest of spirits and other fine drinks make for an excellent evening of relaxation.

2. Off the Record

Known as the best “place to be seen and not heard,” Off the Record is a frequent stop for many of the Washington D.C. elite. When you walk in, you are encompassed with D.C. history in the form of caricatures of the city’s political powerhouses, both present and past. Hidden inside the Hay-Adams hotel, just a short walk from the White House, fills the air inside with political prowess.  

Most patrons like the attitude you get when you first walk in to Off the Record; it immediately feels like a secret hideaway. Perfect for the city it’s in, right? You’ll find it full to the brim with lobbyists, well-dressed locals, and tourists looking to catch a glimpse of a politician. It is truly a place where the rich and powerful go to kick back and relax.

3. Blue Bar Lounge

Located just north from the White House, the Blue Bar Lounge has been a part of the D.C. nightlife since 1918. It’s curvy leather banquettes, exposed brick, and brocade-upholstered walls define the term elegant. It offers the perfect setting for the swankiest of D.C.’s elite to sip on drinks, especially with the happy hour including deals on beer, wine, and bar snacks.

To add to the flare, and swanktastic, feel of the Blue Bar, it hosts live jazz music every Saturday nights. Talented musicians from all over the country have filled the lounge with the smooth sounds of their jazz bands. After all, would a bar really be considered swanky without the sound of a smooth saxophone in the background?

Ritz Carlton DC 888364. Quadrant Bar and Lounge

There’s nothing swankier than sipping a craft cocktail next to a roaring fireplace inside of a Ritz-Carlton. That’s exactly what you’ll be doing when you walk in to the Quadrant Bar and Lounge. This bar also is a host to live jazz music every Saturday night. Swanky idea, right? In fact, this might just be the most swanktastic bar on our list.

If you really want to live the life, request a rare reserve from the vault of the Quadrant. After doing so, you’ll get to watch as the vault, only accessible by the lead mixologist, is opened using white gloves. Then, those same white-gloved hands will pour you a drink costing anywhere from $250 to $5,000 per two ounces. Talk about swanky.


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