Insider’s Guide: Summer in D.C.

Staying in town? Six things to check out in Washington this summer. 

Inside the newly remodeled Watergate Hotel (Photo Courtesy of the Watergate Hotel)

Inside the newly remodeled Watergate Hotel (Photo Courtesy of the Watergate Hotel)

THE WATERGATE HOTEL
GRAND REOPENING
Take yourself back to a scandalous time in history at the newly reopened Watergate Hotel, decorated with a nod to the 1960s era when it was originally built. After a $125 million renovation that took place over six years, the (boasting 336 guest rooms and suites) has been revamped with a restaurant, spa, swimming pool, whiskey bar and cigar lounge. No expense was spared in the upgrade; La Bottega bath amenities complement floor-to-ceiling marble bathrooms, “Mad Men” costume designer Janie Bryant was commissioned to design employee uniforms and most of the sleek furniture was custom-built to conform to the retro aesthetic. Visit thewatergatehotel.com for details.

CIRQUE DU SOLEIL
CURIOUS CONTORTIONISTS
Experience the magical universe of Cirque du Soleil at “Kurios: Cabinet of Curiosities.”Acrobats, contortionists, jugglers, rola bola performers, hand puppeteers and other “possible impossible” acts will amaze show-goers as they meet The Seeker, an inventor from the late-19th-century Industrial revolution. With more props than any Cirque du Soleil production in history (426, to be exact), and more than 100 handmade costumes, this joyful show should be a feast for the senses. Tickets start at $39, Lerner Town Square at Tysons, July 21-Sept 18, cirquedusoleil.com. 

Photo: Martin Girard / shootstudio.ca Costumes: Philippe Guillotel © 2014 Cirque du Soleil

Photo: Martin Girard / shootstudio.ca Costumes: Philippe Guillotel © 2014 Cirque du Soleil

ICEBERGS AT NATIONAL BUILDING MUSEUM
POLAR PASSAGEWAYS
Following the blockbuster success of its “Maze” show in 2014 and “Beach” installation last year, the National Building Museum presents “Icebergs” as part of its annual Summer Block Party series. Explore more than 12,000 square feet of “bergy bits” that soar to 56 feet tall, piercing the museum’s third story balcony. Complete with a suspended “waterline,” the installation “invokes the surreal underwater world.” July 2-Sept. 5, tickets $5-$16, nbm.org.

CAPITAL FRINGE FEST
INDEPENDENT ARTISTS
Innovative theater, music, art, dance and “unclassifiable” forms of live performance and visual art dazzle Washington once again at the 11th annual Capital Fringe Fest. Shows take place at different locations throughout the District, including Logan Fringe Arts Space, Atlas Performing Arts Center and the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library. July 7-31, capitalfringe.org. Single tickets are $17 and you can purchase bulk festival passes beginning at $60 for a four-show pass.

HOLLYWOOD AT THE NATIONAL PORTRAIT GALLERY
CELEBRITY COVERS
See your favorite celebrities all in one place this summer at the National Portrait Gallery. The 32-work collection includes all-original paintings, sculpture and works on paper created to grace the cover of “Time” magazine. View iconic portraits of Cecil B. DeMille, Steven Spielberg, Meryl Streep, Paul Newman, Howard Hughes, Bob Hope and others who shaped the entertainment industry. Runs through Sept. 11, 2016. Free, npg.si.edu/exhibition.

WASHINGTON KASTLES
TENNIS IN THE CITY
The six-time World Team Tennis Champions will play their 2016 season at the Charles E. Smith Center at George Washington University. Big tennis fans can go all out with the $6500 “VIP Dream Seats” package, which includes four seats to a sideline dinner table, a three-course meal, pre-match VIP hospitality with complimentary bar and hors d’oeuvres and VIP parking. Home games are August 1, 2, 3, 8, 10 and 13. washingtonkastles.com.

These picks appear in the Summer 2016 issue of Washington Life. 

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