Well, how could I resist? With my enthusiasm for all things T.R.-related, I was thrilled to learn there was a Theodore Roosevelt-themed B&B not far from the Library of Congress and the Eastern Market. I happily arranged for an overnight stay at this charming bed and breakfast nestled in an elegantly restored Capitol Hill townhouse.
The Bull Moose Bed and Breakfast sits on a nicely-landscaped corner lot. We had the good fortune to come on a lovely late spring day, with the earliest flush of summer blooms, including a lovely oakleaf hydrangea near the B&B’s gate.
Upon entering, we found an envelope containing a welcome letter and the key to our room, "Kermit on Safari." Perhaps a word of explanation is in order here. The ten rooms in the Bull Moose are named after and decorated with Rooseveltian themes, such as the "Rough Rider Room," "The Square Deal," and "The Sequoia."
Okay, I admit it. I’m a sucker for a themed anything. The notion of Roosevelt-themed rooms – if they were well done - intrigued me. I was not disappointed. "Kermit on Safari" was a cozy room with masculine, rustic-looking furnishings. A queen bed decked out with a leopard-pattern throw and zebra-stripe cushions had pride of place, with antique steamer trunks, a distressed wardrobe, a manly leather chair, a simple desk, wooden shutters, and wicker lamps completing the furnishings. Various pictures of T.R. and his son Kermit on safari in Africa accented the room. I was especially happy to find the room had a large, quiet ceiling fan, for nothing makes me sleep better than a gentle breeze.
Everything was meticulously clean in the room and its small bath, and thoughtful touches – bottles of spring water, Q-tips in a bathroom canister – made us feel at home.
However, I was torn between taking a nap on the comfortable bed and going downstairs to sit in a capacious armchair and read one of the newspapers laid out on the coffee table. So I did both. The Bull Moose is quiet, especially given that it’s in the city, with a relaxed, almost contemplative atmosphere. Light filtered through trees streamed through the paneled windows, setting off the warm russet tones of the elaborate antique oak fireplace, detailed molding, and oversized plush armchairs. Lovingly restored houses have a special quality that no modern luxury hotel can match.
I must put in a good word for the young woman – I neglected to learn her name – who was our hostess at breakfast the next morning. She showed a genuine concern for the guests, arranging a taxi for one, advising metro routes to another, and going online to find information for us. Her warm hospitality was matched only by the excellent breakfast of fresh fruit, assorted cereals and baked goods, juice, and delicious coffee. We lingered over breakfast, taking cups of coffee into the lounge with us, and sat happily reading the morning paper before setting out to explore Washington.