The Allen Lee
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Historical Traveler Reviews The Allen Lee Washington DC
Worst Hotel in the World
After spotting the Allen Lee in a guide book showing the 10 best of everything in Washington DC, my friend and I thought it sounded quite suitable from the description they had given - which was "A gracious and simple homebase for exploring the city and a terrific bargain". Well, let me tell you the only word that came close to describing this hotel from the books description was the first 6 letters of TERRIFic, which should have really gone on to read TERRIFYING! We collected our key from reception and walked along the corridor to our room (I think 305) which was on the ground floor, and couldn't believe our eyes when we opened the door. One of the beds was situated directly under a window which was boarded up and you could actually put your hand underneath the piece of wood, so anyone from outside could have broken in. The bed linen was disgusting, ripped and filthy dirty, you wouldn't dare put any of your clothes in the chest of drawers and the shower looked incredibly dangerous and not to mention filthy. We walked straight out of this room and thought we would give them the benefit of the doubt and ask to look at an upstairs room instead. After walking past quasimodo on the landing and other such like beings that seemed to be walking in and out of reception off the street, we walked towards the next room (318), took one look at this room too and walked straight back out. The door to this room looked as if it had been kicked in several times previously and again it was filthy dirty. We gave the key back in at reception and hailed a cab from around the corner. I can honestly say this was the worst hotel I have ever experienced and being two women on our own, were quite frightened and disgusted that a guide book could recommend it. It looked nothing less than what we could imagine a "drug den" to be. Needless to say, I will be dropping the guide book a line to let them know. Please, please do not ever be tempted to stay here.
The bugs in my sheets seemed to live it
Hi, I'm 15 and would like to share my story of my....vacation....at the Allen Lee Hotel. The best thing I can think to write is a story I turned in for LA about the place. Enjoy! Washington, D.C., a place of beauty, power and history. The Allen Lee Hotel is an example of all three. The hotel is over 100 years old. I don't know how many people have had the misfortune of staying at the Allen Lee Hotel, but I pity for each person who has. The night we arrived in D.C. we were happy to know that our hotel was close and that it was in a great location for walking to all the monuments. When we arrived I noticed the old fashioned decorations and wondered how the rooms looked. But before we could look around my dad dropped our bags behind the front desk and dragged us out for sightseeing. I must admit all the statues lit up were awe inspiring, and some of the memorials were touching. But after hours of walking around the Tidal Basin we had seen everything. We were tired and wanted to get back to the Allen Lee. My dad was even willing to get a taxi, but as luck would have it there were none. By the time we got back and dragged our bags to our rooms, all I could think about was a warm shower and a comfy bed. My sister and I had one room while my parents and other sister had a room down the hall. Once in the room my sister turned on the rabbit eared TV and tried to find Disney or Nickalodeon but the only thing that came in was a snowy news report. Without really looking at the room I headed to the shower. Now I believe a ghost haunted that bathroom door. It took me a good minute of tugging and pulling to shut it. As soon as I got it shut it would swing open. My sister finally suggested to put a bag in front of the door to keep it shut. When I really looked at the bathroom for the first time I noticed that the sink had no faucet handles and the mirror was so dirty I couldn't see my reflection. The toilet was only marginally better than a Port-a-Potty. The light, a single bulb hanging from its wires, failed to reach the shower. As I slowly peered into the dark cave I was supposed to bathe in, I noticed something moving. I slowly looked up. Alien mold was moving around. Taking this all in, I decided to keep my life rather than shower. After reporting to my sister I changed into my Pjs and sat in what looked like a chair. If I thought the bathroom was bad, the room was hell. The stench of cigarette smoke hung in the air. Dark red and brown spots (clearly blood, maybe from the civil war, or perhaps shed more recently) splattered the thin carpets and walls. The window was barred. The beds were cot sized, and more uncomfortable than a pullout sofa bed made of nails. My sister and I argued over who would sleep by the door, where a killer was likely to come in, and who should sleep by the window, where they would probably get shot. In the end my sister took the bed by the door because there was less blood on that side of the room. As I crawled under the one thin sheet I looked up at the now dark ceiling. Outside I could hear alarms and shouting. From the bathroom the moss was talking to the ghost of the door. If I chose not to listen to them there was always the insects crawling in my bed, or perhaps the drunk who would spend the whole night banging around the hall, who would be willing to talk. But I focused on the blood that spotted the room. I imagined that the Allen Lee must have been a civil war hospital and this room was one of the operating rooms. And I knew it was a restless soldier that made the bathroom door swing open and shut by my head. Soon I was too tired to fight the moss, ghosts, insects, and blood, and I fell asleep.
Hi. I have just returned to Tokyo from the trip to Washington,D.C.
As I had read the reviews before, I was a little bit scared to stay at Allen Lee. But I could not afford to pay $100 or more for an accomodation. So, I was reluctantly headed for the hotel.
At first, its exterior looked not so filthy which was surprising for me. The reception area was much more tidy than I had expected. Vending machines for snacks and drinks were available there.
As far as the room I stayed was concerned(306), though it's not clean, it was a tolerable one.
Obviously, it was far from luxurious. However, considering its price and location, my impression is that this is not so bad as described.
According to a travel guide, room No.306, 406, 506 are much better than the rest. I was so lucky!
But I felt insecured often. Even footsteps from the corridor scared me sometimes. Almost every sound and conversations penetrated the wall.
In coclusion, I do not intend to recommend this hotel to anyone. But it is worth considering to choose this hotel as a last resort.
Please note the fact that I am a 21-year-old student who has few money. This article is written from a poor student's point of view.
Don't, don't, don't - can I be clearer...?
"Europeans, of course, usually feel right at home here." - that's a pretty good advert on a website isn't it...? With hindsight it's a slight on everyone over here in Europe.
In September 2000 I'd booked a room at the Allen Lee while I was on an East Coast tour taking in New Orleans, Orlando, DC and NYC. I was looking for cheap hotels and guess I now know why the Allen Lee is cheap. Let me quote my diary from the time:
"Hmmm . Flight was good, B737, with good viz so got to see a great deal of the East Coast of the States on the way. Weather at IAD quite cool, but very humid. Was quickly through the terminal and into a shared cab, its quite a good system, you jump into a minivan and when its full off it goes on the best route to fit in all the destinations. I was second, so it didnt take that long only $23 too (better than $40 for a cab). Now I should have become wary when the passenger in the front seat, who had been talking all about his very bad cateracts on the way, commented on how nice the little hotel looked Then I should have paid attention when the receptionist told me to pay once Id seen the room Reader, it was horrible. It was the worst place I have ever seen, apart possibly from the hotel in Thoroughly Modern Millie I dumped my bags in the room, expecting them to have gone by the time I got back and went off into Washington with one aim to find a new hotel. Now Im not sure whats going on in this city but everywhere nice, and I mean everywhere, was full. So I resolved that I would stay in the hotel for one night and find somewhere new in the morning.
I returned to the hotel at about 7pm, and went to the room. I had to tear a plastic bag apart to sit on because of the disgusting nature of the chair in the room when I say room I think thats doing it a big of a disservice, after all you can only call a broom cupboard that cant you I spent the evening phoning all of the hotel lines I could find in a vain attempt to find anything in the area, all to no avail, bar one the hotel next door where Im now writing this. At about 9pm I just wanted to get the whole event over and done with so pulled back the sheet only to find half of the previous occupant still there hair eurgh It was pretty gruesome really, I felt really, really uneasy for the whole night. I pushed all my bags up against the door so that it gave me a little more easiness in sleep
I think I slept pretty lightly right through the night, waking up at the slightest noise. 7am took a long time to arrive
Jumped into the shower, which was about the only thing that was OK in the hotel, despite again the previous occupants bits "
If I only had one bit of advice to give people it would be "DON'T". Two years on and I'm a confirmed Marriott Guest - although you pay more, you know that you're not going to be sharing your room with the previous year's guest's hair...
This is against every human right!!!
Hi, unfortunately I didn't see this reviews before I went to the Allen Lee hotel!!! A dump is even a nice word for it, this was WORSE!
Don't let yourself irritate by their homepage, this place is just awful. When I saw our room, I was totally shocked.
We had the problem we were late, no time to check into another hotel, and we also didn't have the money for a 200 $ room in another hotel.
TV: bring it to the dump.
AC: not working
Bathrooms: water all over the floor, funghi
Last but not least I didn't feel safe at all there, very strange crowd of people, the elevator seems to get stuck every second...
So above all: IT's NOT worth it!!!
No joke--it's a dump
I had a reservation here and thank God I saw these reviews before I left home! I called and cancelled immediately. Unfortunately, I had a deposit on my room--three weeks later I am still trying to get my money back! I went there twice to check on my deposit (no one was returning phone calls), so I didn't see a lot, but it was enough. The front door was held together with duct tape and the lobby was dirty and run down looking. As an added touch, the front desk area looked like something you would see in a gas station, complete with bullet proof glass. BTW, I ended up at Hotel Lombardy down the street at 20 and I. I got a reasonable deal and the hotel was awesome.
Absolutely Filthy Dirty
I was horrified by the disgusting state of the Allen Lee. All the reviews I (subsequently) read on this site are 150% correct. It amazes me that it has not been closed down. I am blown away by how misleading the offical web site is.
This place is a slum! Stained rugs that are literally rippled off the ground, moldy windows, rusty bathrooms, small dark rooms, paint was chipping off the walls, and an unwelcoming staff. These reviews we have read we should of believed. My wife and I walked right in and went out just as quick. The bastards even made us pay one night for the ten minutes we were there total. To everyone considering staying here, believe the reviews, dont waste your time and money.
Dump with a capital D!
This place is disgustingly dirty: carpets are FILTHY, ceilings caving in, wall paneling falling off, sheets and mattresses old and dirty, exposed wiring, no working A/C, dirty bathroom, no functional smoke detector, decrepit room, door doesn't have deadbolt or chain...NO THANKS! I checked out the room and then CHECKED OUT! Not safe, not clean, not a bargain in the end. NO WAY!
Let me just tell you - I walked in - saw my room and walked out and went straight for a Marriott. This is no joke - don't stay at this place. I am not kidding. You will see what I mean when you get there and you have to go pay 200.00 for a room somewhere else.