A Mano (1677 Wisconsin Ave. NW) anchors the top of Book Hill. In 1994, Adam Mahr opened this shop of Italian and French pottery in two 19th-century houses joined by a brick courtyard. (Julia Child once lived in one of the houses.) You’ll find high-end bed and table linens, crystal, Palm Beach-style costume jewelry and kids’ bedding, toys and clothing. Currently in stock: ABC wooden blocks in 22 languages from Arabic to Swedish ($45) and pink or blue cabana-striped Beverly Hills Hotel pajamas ($165).
Oliver Dunn, Moss & Co. and Catharine Roberts are three women-owned businesses under one roof (1657 Wisconsin Ave. NW). For almost two decades, they’ve curated their stock of housewares, antiques, French and Scandinavian textiles, jewelry, industrial chic and a bit of taxidermy. Look for cement mushrooms ($42), metal food domes ($135), lavender linen drawer liners ($28) and twig bundles ($15) that look too nice to burn.
“This is one of my favorite shops in Georgetown,” says designer Frank Babb Randolph, who lives nearby. “On a spring day, walking out through their store into their beautiful garden with all the topiaries is a real treat.”
Susan Calloway Fine Arts (1643 Wisconsin Ave. NW) opened in 1993, and Calloway has been adding contemporary artists to her stable ever since. She carries a selection of antique oil paintings and prints and also specializes in custom framing using archival quality materials. There is a large selection of frames, and custom mirrors are available. She stocks Middle Kingdom
porcelains inspired by ancient Chinese ceramics.
The cobblestone streets, colorful flower baskets and quaint brick storefronts of this part of Georgetown, the District’s oldest neighborhood, make it a shopping destination.
David Bell’s 1970s Italian drinks table made of bronze and sandblasted glass ($1,800).
MOST STYLISH ACCESSORY
Oliver Dunn’s ombre silk velvet pillows ($195) in colors that look positively iridescent.
GRAB A BITE
The Bean Counter (1665 Wisconsin Ave. NW) is a favorite of locals for homemade soups, Cuban sandwiches and coffee drinks. Patisserie Poupon has earned regulars with its Nicoise salads and croissants.
For a treat, tiny Macaron Bee (1669 Wisconsin Ave. NW) opened last year with pastel macarons ($1.75 each). Flavors change seasonally and include apricot, Earl Grey milk chocolate or fleur de sel caramel. Luce says it’s better than any macaron he’s had in Paris. You can order towers of them for parties.
French Market, a European open-air festival and sidewalk sale, has become an annual spring attraction. Book Hill shops set up outdoor tables and offer markdowns up to 75 percent off. There is music and French food. The 2013 French Market sale will be April 19 and 20 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
The association Georgetown Galleries on Book Hill was formed in 2011 to collaborate on special events and gallery nights, as well as lectures, tours and opening receptions. The members are Addison/Ripley Fine Arts, Maurine Littleton Gallery, Susan Calloway Fine Arts, Neptune Fine Art, Robert Brown Gallery and Heiner Contemporary.
Book Hill comprises the 1600 block of Wisconsin Avenue between Q Street NW and R Street NW. It’s in the city’s historic Georgetown neighborhood. There is free two-hour parking on many side streets. Feed the meters to park on parts of Wisconsin Avenue for up to four hours: enough time for a blow-out, birthday gift shopping and a cappuccino.
Many shops are open Tuesday through Saturday; some are closed Mondays and/or Sundays. Find more information from the Georgetown Business Improvement District at: