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Foreign visitors account for 27% of tourism spending in D.C. and hotels have taken notice, but they must find a balance between sharing the American culture and supplying visitors with comforts of home.

It’s no secret that international visitors and diplomatic delegations are a large source of revenue for Washington’s hospitality industry. The number of international travelers in the area has been rising steadily in recent years, up 31 percent since 2000 and totaling 1.8 million people in 2011, a bright spot in an otherwise sluggish domestic economy — and hotels are increasingly going to great lengths to make sure their clients feel right at home.

Willard Intercontinental Hotel

The Willard Intercontinental Hotel is located in downtown DC and has hosted foreign visitors since 1818. Photo by NCinDC.

“Since Washington is so international, our clients come from all over the world and we want to make them feel comfortable,” said Liliana Baldassari, a spokeswoman for the Four Seasons in Georgetown. “Any guest can ask for anything, and we’ll have it for them.”

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Tags: government, washington dc

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