From the outside, Union Station may look like many old federal buildings in downtown Washington, but its $160 million revamp in 1988 was the largest public/private restoration project ever completed in the U.S. You can find metro, Amtrak, VRE and MARC trains here headed to Virginia, Maryland and beyond. Check the Web site for details on the station's storied history (sneak peak: President Truman headed to Philadelphia with 18 other trains from Union Station for the Army Navy football game in 1951). Inside, find shops and restaurants like B.Smith's, a Baroque dining room in the former suite where U.S. presidents used to board trains.
Gallaudet, founded in 1864, is world's only university specifically designed to accommodate deaf and hard of hearing students. It comes as no surprise, then, that the hotel on its historic campus opened in 1995 with the premise of barrier-free communication and open idea exchange. With ample parking for a large group (a hard-to-come-by amenity in Washington), plus comfortable, accessible and technologically advanced meeting rooms, this is the place to meet for a quiet business retreat with close access to downtown. Tours of the university are also available.
Calling all stamp enthusiasts and dedicated letter writers: follow your bliss to the NPM in the old Post Office building next to Union Station. The answers to burning questions like how mail winds up on your doorstep so fast (we've come a long way since horse drawn carriages), and how many types of postage stamps have been in circulation since the USPS' inception in 1639, can be found here through a series of exhibits and tours.