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Watergate Complex Nearing 50th Birthday

June 13, 2017

Vanity Fair nails this story with a grand article.


Your blogger, Gregory Humphrey, at the famed Watergate.

In an act of kismet none could have predicted, the Watergate Hotel, which had been bought and sold several times in the years since Nixon’s resignation, reopened exactly a year ago, flaunting a $125 million renovation that capitalized on its 70s vintage cool and, with a few cheeky touches, its scandalous past. But its unexpected relevance has also come with competition, right down the road in the Trump International Hotel, a giant symbol of, and possible party to, the actual scandal currently absorbing the national’s capital. The Watergate break-in is beginning to look quaint compared to Trump’s many alleged conflicts and collusions—and the hotel, beautifully renovated as it may be, is forced to elbow past Trump himself to be part of the zeitgeist.

Meanwhile, the Watergate, for all its vintage cachet, still seems to capture the imagination of the people who remember it the first time around. Julia Livick, a marketing manager at a global-risk consultancy firm, was instructed by her boss to book a corporate conference at the Watergate with the company’s higher-ups in mind. “My sense is that it still holds some sort of historic glamour for people of older generations,” she said.

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