Posts Tagged ‘Watergate Hotel’

Renovate-Gate

Tuesday, June 15th, 2010

Watergate Hotel has been sold and will be renovated as an “upper-upscale hotel”.   Washington, D.C.’s fabled Watergate Hotel – the site of the notorious 1972 break-in at the Democratic National Committee headquarters that set off the political scandal that toppled Richard M. Nixon’s presidency – has been sold and will be redeveloped as an “upper-upscale hotel”. According to The Wall Street Journal, Euro Capital Partners, a redevelopment specialist, purchased the 43-year-old, 251-room hotel which has been closed since 2007 and had been foreclosed on by the German bank PB Capital.

“The Watergate is exactly the profile of what we’ve done and redone many times,” according to Jacque Cohen, a Euro Capital Partners principal, “with the difference that the Watergate is even easier” because it is relatively newer.

Renovation plans include a spa, meeting spaces, restaurants and bars that Cohen said would “improve the whole Watergate complex” and the surrounding neighborhood.  Rooms at the Watergate, which is within walking distance of the Kennedy Center and Georgetown, will be priced upwards of $300 a night.  Previous Euro Capital projects have included the Hilton Arc de Triomphe Paris and Washington, D.C.’s Hamilton Crowne Hotel.  The neglected hotel’s multi-million dollar renovation is expected to take at least two years.

Headquartered in Paris and New York, Euro Capital specializes in redeveloping pre-World War II properties into upscale hotels, offices and condominiums.

Watergate Hotel Relegated to White Elephant Status

Wednesday, July 29th, 2009

watergate01The Watergate Hotel – the site where the “third-rate burglary” that sparked the biggest political scandal in American history and brought down Richard M. Nixon’s presidency was plotted — is now a distressed commercial property that failed to find a buyer at a much-anticipated auction.

The 251-room hotel, with its spectacular views of the Potomac River, was taken back by its owner, PB Capital, a subsidiary of Deutsche Postbank AG after no bidders expressed interest in purchasing and rehabbing the property in an auction held by Alex Cooper Auctioneers.  Monument Realty, which in 2004 bought the 12-story hotel with financing from the now-bankrupt Lehman Brothers, owes PB Capital $44.3 million and is in default on the property.  In addition to paying off the loan, the new owner would have to rehab the Watergate, which has been closed for several years.  Built in 1967, the legendary hotel needs an estimated $100 million in renovations to bring it up to 21st-century standards.

David Furman, an attorney with Gibson Dunne, is not surprised that the hotel did not interest bidders.  “Lenders usually win in these kinds of auctions because they have the ability to credit bid the full amount of their loan.  There is usually a negotiated settlement before or after the auction.  It is rare that there is an upset at a foreclosure sale.”

According to Monument principal Michael Darby, he has commitments from new investors to restore the Watergate as a five-star hotel.  Another developer, Robert Holland, wants to buy the Watergate and is in talks with the United Arab Emirates-based luxury hotel chain, Jumeirah, to operate it.