Traveling can be a pain in the neck. So to help guests work out the kinks caused by baggage schlepping and cramped coach seats, some local hotels are thinking outside the treadmill.
Balancing on the edge of the black granite infinity pool atop the ritzy new Capella Washington, D.C., Georgetown (1050 31st St. NW; Capellahotels.com/washingtondc), Mariska Breland goes into a side plank with one arm raised.
“You’re trying to create traction by having your body go in two different directions,” says Breland, founder of the nearby Fuse Pilates (2008 Hillyer Place NW; Fusepilates.com), which has partnered with the hotel to offer guests private training in their rooms ($100/hour) or poolside ($150 for up to eight people).
General manager Alex Obertop says Capella is all about providing guests with exclusive experiences, such as arranging walk-on roles with the Washington Ballet. Bringing fitness instruction directly to the property is one other way to make an overnight stay special.
You don’t need to book a room to lie down and relax at Georgetown’s other new hotel: The Graham Georgetown (1075 Thomas Jefferson St. NW; Thegrahamgeorgetown.com). Every Saturday at 9 a.m., 20 spots are available on the rooftop for folks who want to “Sun.Stretch.Sip” ($40) with a yoga class and continental breakfast featuring fresh fruit juices.
“It was the beginning of us trying to embrace the community,” says Camilo Miguel Jr., Graham’s owner, who reached out to CorePower Yoga (1055 Thomas Jefferson St. NW; Corepoweryoga.com) for instructors. “I’m into health and fitness myself, and I think it’s a great idea for the guests.”
It’s a similar idea to the Liaison Capitol Hill’s Weekend Refresher package ($50) offered Saturdays and Sundays. The hotel (415 New Jersey Ave. NW; Affinia.com) hosts 7:30 a.m. rooftop yoga classes, followed by a continental breakfast.
Mats aren’t just for bathrooms anymore. The Kimpton hotel chain (Kimptonhotels.com) has recently started putting Gaiam yoga mats in every guest room. Hotel staff will roll the mat out, bring extra towels and provide fruit and flavored water on request.
“Some people just like to exercise in the privacy of their own room, so this allows them to do that and do it more comfortably than putting a towel down,” says Mark Jennings, D.C. area director of hotel operations at Kimpton. (Kimpton’s Hotel Monaco is also hosting a Pilates on the Patio class at 10 a.m. Saturday. Get details at Chaunabryant.com/POP.html.)
Guests can practically get an entire fitness studio when they book at the Hilton McLean Tysons Corner (7920 Jones Branch Drive, McLean, Va.; Hilton.com). A Yoga Room comes with a Gaiam mat, cork bricks, a strap, a foam roller and a stability ball, while a Cardio Room is equipped with a Precor Adaptive Motion Trainer, a workout bench, hand weights, resistance bands, a stretch mat and a stability ball.
Travelers tend to arrive at their destinations bent out of shape, says Mariska Breland, founder of Fuse Pilates. She recommends performing shoulder bridges to stretch the spine. Lying flat on your back, bend your knees and place the soles of your feet on the floor hip-width apart. Inhale, and then, as you exhale, lift up your hips one vertebra at a time. Then melt back down. Arms float up and down with your hips. Do 10 reps. Another exercise that will help you get it together is the Hundred. Lying face up, lift your head and chest off the floor. Then lift your legs and squeeze your heels together, letting the toes rotate out externally. Hold that and pump your straight arms up and down, palms at hip or thigh level. Do 10 sets of 10 reps.