Two summers ago, my husband and I spent the summer backpacking through Europe. We’d traveled through Europe before, but we had never been spent time in Eastern Europe. One of our favorite cities became Budapest due to its gorgeous architecture and unique ‘ruin bars,’ which you can read about here.  I’ve always loved old, ornate European buildings, but mix that with a funky, fun decor… I’m hooked.

When we moved to DC, we stumbled upon Eighteenth Street Lounge (ESL) in Dupont Circle, and it evoked wonderful memories of our time in Budapest.  I still can’t quite put my finger on the connection, but ESL is inspiring in so many ways.

Seriously… the high gloss ceilings in here!  The wall paper!  PURE OPULENCE.  Did I mention that they play live reggae music in the adjoining room?  The contrast of “DC stuffiness” with island tunes is perfection.

This is my favorite room.   The glossy black walls, candles everywhere, tufted velvet sofas, prohibition cocktails… I could stay here all night.  I dream of decorating a room in my home like this bar.  Glossy everything, everywhere!  I’m trying to talk my husband into a high gloss black bathroom, but he won’t give in unless it’s accompanied by a tattooed bartender serving him an old-fashioned on the loo.  Hard sell.

For those balmy summer nights, ESL even features a patio bar.  I currently have Ikea solar lights hanging on my tiny patio roof, but ESL has crystal chandeliers.  Basically the same thing, right?