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Foggy Bottom Community Guide The Watergate Hotel and Kennedy Center are here...and you could be too!

Updated 3/28/2023

History and Flavor

Running northwest of the White House, Foggy Bottom is one of the oldest areas in DC. Dating from the mid-18th century, its name comes from a geographic quirk in which the area’s low-lying riverside land tends to trap fog or smoky air. The name was extended to the US Department of State when it moved its headquarters there in the mid-20th century.

The infamous Watergate complex is here, alongside the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. George Washington University is an ever-expanding presence in the area. In addition, many federal buildings are located in the area, including the Executive Office Building, and many international organizations and embassies are also located here.

It is also one of the most desirable areas of town, and rentals here are the highest in the DC market.


Music & Parks

  • John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts– Esteemed cultural center hosting plays, music & dance shows in its multiple theaters plus art tours.
  • Georgetown Piano Bar– Basement-level venue with well-versed piano men, sing-alongs & cocktails named for musical legends.
  • Rock Creek Park– A large urban park that bisects the Northwest quadrant of Washington, D.C.  Created by an Act of Congress in 1890, today, the park is administered by the National Park Service.
  • Thompson Boathouse If you love the outdoors, check out Boating DC’s Thompson Boathouse located in Foggy Bottom. You can rent everything from bikes to paddleboards to kayaks to canoes, take classes, and even hold a Regatta.
  • State Department Diplomatic Reception Rooms– If you love politics and gorgeous spaces, be sure to check out the Diplomatic Reception Rooms. These exquisitely curated rooms are used for meetings with ambassadors, emissaries, world leaders, and tours daily by prior arrangement.


Popular Shopping and Eats

  • Kennedy Center Gift ShopStore at the Kennedy Center offering CDs, books, apparel & other gift items.
  • Georgetown ParkGeorgetown Park is a mixed-use shopping mall and condominium complex in the Georgetown historic district of Washington, D.C.
  • Western Market– Small shopping center with a facade of historic row houses & a mix of stores & casual restaurants.
  • The Kingbird Restaurant A soaring dining space at the Watergate Hotel. Besides the everyday meals, this is the place to go for holiday feasts if cooking is not your thing. Their gorgeous and classic-with-a-twist afternoon high tea is also a must-do.
  • The Next Whiskey Bar– A gorgeous and elegant bar inside the Watergate.
  • Top of the GateAtop the Watergate, you’ll find this bar. On select days in winter, Top of the Gate has an ice skating rink with a skate-up bar and spectacular 360-degree views.
  •  Roof Terrace Restaurant– Indoors at The Kennedy Center. One of the most elegant dining experiences you can have anywhere. Cocktails and dinner here, then a performance by The Washington Opera, The NSO, or a touring Broadway show, makes for a truly memorable evening.
  • Founding Farmers– This farm-to-table favorite has a location here in Foggy Bottom.
  • Tonic at Quigley’s Pharmacy– Get a taste of history at this restaurant which has spent the last decade serving up tater tots, cocktails, and fun events from this former old-timey soda fountain and shows no signs of slowing down.
  • Kaz Sushi Bistro– If you have a taste for sushi, come by and see why Kaz has been at the top of everybody’s best-of list for the last 20 years.


Best Public High Schools

Best Public Elementary Schools

Public Transportation


Foggy Bottom-GWU Station – Transportation exchange

Foggy Bottom GWU Metrorail Station – Train

Median Home Value

$526,215 as of 2023

Renters: 66%

Owners: 34%


Population 11,398

Median household income –  $72,300

Median age: 20

Families with children – 2%

High school diploma or equivalent – 2%

College Degree: 96%

63% White

13% Hispanic

13% Asian

7% African American

4% Other