- - Saturday, April 28, 2018

Pike & Rose in North Bethesda, Maryland, provides residents a walking neighborhood that includes mid-rise apartments and condominiums above retail stores, quick cuisine and chic dining.

This city within a city offers plenty of reasons to never leave its friendly confines and offers an oasis for weary travelers to the D.C. area. Here’s some of the latest buzz and what’s new at Pike & Rose.

Canopy by Hilton at Pike & Rose

The Pike & Rose development now includes the Canopy by Hilton. The hotel features 177 rooms, including 12 suites and two presidential suites. Rack rates begin at $129 per night.

The entrance features two impressive design elements: a two-story, living moss wall that (from a distance) looks like a map of the area; and a massive chandelier draped with opaque acrylic reproductions of pages from a 1933 National Geographic Magazine.



An early resident of the area, Gilbert Grosvenor (a nearby Metro stop, Grosvenor, bears his name) was the editor of that 1933 issue, dedicated to the birds of his Bethesda country home, Wild Acres. (Visitors who enjoy birding may want to add a visit to the Audobon Naturalist Society, located in nearby Chevy Chase.)

The feeling of the hotel lobby seating area is electric and eclectic. Its materials consist of velvet and leather, glass and wood. A combination of enveloping couches and hard surface chairs creates a comfortable cross between shabby chic and industrial.

Floors throughout are high gloss, painted concrete with bright area rugs. Instead of closets, the rooms offer wooden towers with drawers and hanging rods, as well as a shelf for your luggage. Sliding barn doors define the bathroom in an homage to the area’s farming roots.

Getting to and meeting at Pike & Rose

From Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport, the journey on Metro’s Red Line is easy. Your Metro stop is White Flint, with a five- to seven-minute walk to the hotel. The easy Metro access makes the location handy for tourists wanting to explore Washington, D.C., without paying D.C. transportation prices.

Pike & Rose offers plenty of gathering and meeting space. A 3,200-square-foot outdoor terrace makes a great gathering place, while the lobby, called Canopy Central, has plenty of comfortable seating supported by food and beverage service.

The Canopy Central chef-driven bistro will prepare foods from Maryland farms within 100 miles of the hotel. At the bar, travelers can sip on local spirits, beers and wine from innovative distilleries, breweries and wineries. It’s easy to imagine a wedding or other celebration within this space.

For hotel guests, Canopy Central offers a few unique features with comfort in mind. Elevator lobbies on each floor feature EZH₂O bottle refilling stations, with bottles for personal use in every room. Rooms provide refrigerated drawers for sodas, snacks and leftovers. Each room has a Nespresso tea and coffee system.

Off the Canopy Central space lies a quiet area with business cubicles, where you can place for a call, charge your electronics or do a little work.

Wash off the dust of travel

A welcoming feature of the hotel is the Canopy Transfer Station. Looking not unlike a changing room at an upscale spa, the Transfer Station is for those who arrive before their room is ready but need a place to refresh. Features include a shower, fresh towels and personal cleansing amenities to clean off the travel dust before a meeting or a day of sightseeing.

Personal lockers with electronic locks are available to store items securely.

Urban development

Rockville Pike (Maryland Route 355) is witnessing a surge of communities anchored by the Metro Red Line such as Pike & Rose, Montrose Crossing and Twinbrook Station, which is under development at this writing.

In addition to hotels and shopping, visitors will enjoy innovative eateries and chef-driven restaurants all within a mile of each other. One of the most interesting eating experiences to emerge out of these developments are the “quick cuisine” cafeteria-style restaurants that feature quality ingredients served fresh and fast.

Honeygrow at Montrose Crossing

A new entrant to the Rockville-North Bethesda dining scene is Honeygrow at Montrose Crossing. Lunch and dinner diners use touch screens to place their orders, designing a custom stir-fry bowl or salad with only the ingredients they prefer.

Stir-fry options start with a choice of noodles: egg white, whole wheat, brown rice or rice. Add a protein: tofu, eggs, all-natural roast pork, chicken, beef, shrimp or turkey. Additional ingredients include fresh vegetables like peas, broccoli and asparagus, herbs, spicy and bell peppers, onions, sesame seeds and mushrooms. Top off your stir-fry with one of five house-made sauces including spicy garlic, sweet soy five spice, sesame garlic, red coconut curry and shiso-basil pesto.

Salads are equally expansive when it comes to your choice of lettuce and toppings. The eatery offers entree-size salads, like a traditional cobb with white balsamic vinaigrette or seasonal salads, made to your liking. You also have the option to create your own with lettuce, noodles or wheat berries, and all-natural chicken, bacon, tofu, yellowfin tuna, avocado, hardboiled egg and cheeses.

Impressive is the Honeygrow local list blackboard showing the providers of its ingredients. If you are a fan of goat cheese, for example, you can see that its source is Euphrates Inc. of Fleetwood, Pennsylvania, located just three hours north of Rockville.

Honeygrow’s signature dish is its yogurt-based dessert that combines honey, fresh fruits and berries, and is topped with coconut, dark chocolate chips, granola and honey, wildflower, buckwheat or clover, or maple syrup.

The North Bethesda-Rockville area is quickly growing into a world-class destination for those who choose to live, work and visit the metropolitan Washington, D.C. The Red Line makes it an easy choice for those visiting to see the sites or attend business functions.

Jacquie Kubin is an award-winning travel and food writer and travel editor at Communities Digital News.

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