Best Starbucks to Find Local D.C. Politicos

Starbucks at the J.W. Marriott Hotel
1331 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, (202) 393-2000
If you ever see a D.C. councilmember jaywalk mid-block in front of the Wilson Building and make a beeline across Freedom Plaza to points undetermined, there’s a good chance they’re headed to a hidden Starbucks inside the J.W. Marriott hotel. While the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center sits adjacent to the seat of the District of Columbia government, grabbing a cup of coffee involves navigating a security checkpoint and a long walk into the massive building complex to grab a simple cup of coffee. This secret Starbucks, tucked away on the hotel’s mezzanine, is out of view, and has plenty of nooks to meet and discuss local affairs and Wilson Building politics discreetly—or if you’re a D.C. councilmember, hold court mid-morning. Mind you, there’s another Starbucks just steps away at the corner at 13th Street NW and Pennsylvania Avenue, but there are windows and tourists to deal with! When even the secret Starbucks is too high-profile to talk shop, there’s always the back corner of the basement-level food court of the Reagan Building to meet face-to-face without anybody noticing.
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