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Birthday party help, Round 2.

Last year I posted about being down to the wire trying to make birthday plans. This year I started early, but plans fell through and now I'm back to square 1, hoping the fantastic Chowhound community may be able to help out once again.

I'm turning 29 and want some kind of semi-private bar space where about 20-30 people can hang out and drink. Ideally I would like to have some appetizers, like maybe a table set up with some sliders and/or flatbreads, or something like that. I'll pay for the appetizers while my guests can buy drinks from a cash bar. Ideally, one that is ours or mostly ours.

Whitlow's in Arlington lets (or at least used to let) you use one of the back bars for a given amount of time until it gets busy (if I recall correctly). That's exactly what I have in mind. Problem is, we ended up at Whitlow's for my birthday last year. And this year I'd like to be in the downtown/Chinatown/Penn Quarter areas, but I'm also open to, say, Dupont or somewhere else fairly central and metro-accessible as well.

I attempted to work with Ping Pong Dim Sum on renting out some of their space and doing a fun dim sum-style party, but their events people have not been cooperating with me.

At this point I'm having such a hard time that I'm considering trying to find a large hotel suite to have my own party, but that's getting into more-than-I-can-spend territory. Although ideas for an affordable suite that has a bedroom, balcony and kitchen(ette) are welcome too.

Help? Thanks in advance!

Help! Down to the wire on DC birthday plans...

I've perused these boards for years for answers to various questions I've posed to Google, but this time I need some real, live help.

I'm celebrating my 28th birthday next weekend (Feb 12) and desperately need some ideas for festivities. My ideal night would be somewhere in DC (possibly north Arlington) where roughly a dozen of us can eat, have drinks (dinner or even just appetizers/small plates) and stick around for more drinking and some dancing and general silliness. A one-stop-shop for a somewhat low-key but still fun birthday evening, if you will.

Nothing too crazy expensive/chi-chi, and somewhere with parking and metro access would be ideal...but not totally necessary if it's an otherwise great solution.

Thanks in advance!