Waldorf is an unincorporated community and census-designated place in Charles County, Maryland, United States. It is south-southeast of Washington, D.C. The population of the census-designated area (now including the large planned community of St. Charles) was 67,752 at the 2010 census. Waldorf was settled before 1900 as a rural crossroads with a train station and was called "Beantown" after a local family.
Waldorf's original name was Beantown. In 1880 the General Assembly of Maryland by an act changed the name to "Waldorf" in honor of William Waldorf Astor (1848–1919), the great-grandson of John Jacob Astor (1763–1848), who was born in Walldorf, Palatinate, Germany. On July 29, 1908, the city of Plumb Valley in Waseca County, Minnesota, changed its name to Waldorf after Waldorf, Maryland.
Waldorf is predominantly a bedroom community for many residents who commute to work at other points in the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area, especially personnel at Andrews Air Force Base. Waldorf's local jobs are primarily in the service and sales industry. Nearby St. Charles Towne Center, a 2-story shopping mall, opened in 1988 and was remodeled in 2007. St. Charles Towne Center draws shoppers and diners from several Maryland counties, Washington, and parts of Virginia, causing Charles County to be promoted as the "shopping capital of Southern Maryland." U.S. Route 301, the main highway through the town, boasts the "Waldorf Motor Mile," with car dealerships located primarily along the northbound side. In 2005, Waldorf opened its third public high school (North Point High School), which has advanced science/technology programs; the Capital Clubhouse 24-hour indoor sports complex and ice rink also opened that year. A fourth public high school is scheduled to open in 2014. Waldorf has a branch of the College of Southern Maryland. In 2006, plans were announced to build two more shopping centers, including one with high-end stores and an attractive "lifestyle" town center design layout. Ground was also broken to build an office park with mid-rise office buildings at the intersection of Western Parkway and Route 228 (Berry Road); the Residence Inn opened there in 2010, and another new hotel has opened across the road. The Southern Maryland Blue Crabs baseball team is also in Waldorf.