Sneak peek inside the new Watergate Hotel

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By JESS MOSS

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Watergate Hotel Sneak Peek
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Sneak peek inside the new Watergate Hotel

Design for the new guestrooms in the Watergate Hotel

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Watergate concierge and front desk uniforms (for women) by Mad Men costume designer Janie Bryant
Watergate doormen uniforms by Mad Men costume designer Janie Bryant
Whisky bar server uniforms (for women) by Mad Men costume designer Janie Bryant
Whisky bar server uniforms (for women) by Mad Men costume designer Janie Bryant
The new design for the Watergate Hotel's lobby
View of Georgetown from the Watergate Hotel rooftop, which will house a bar when the hotel opens.
View from the Watergate Hotel rooftop, featuring other Watergate complex buildings and the Washington Monument
View of the Kennedy Center and Potomac River from the Watergate Hotel rooftop, which will house a bar this summer.
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It's arguably the most famous hotel in the world, and one of the most scandalous spots in the country, but for over seven years the Watergate Hotel in Washington D.C. has been shuttered and unoccupied.

It won't be for much longer.

This summer, the Watergate Hotel is set to re-open with a new mid-century modern interior design that recalls the grandeur of its early years in the 1960s. (The iconic wavy white exterior of the building will remain the same.) The space is still under construction, but plans call for a grand ballroom and 10,000 square feet of riverfront outdoor terraces. There will be a whisky bar, cigar lounge, spa and a rooftop bar with a 360-degree view of D.C. that takes in the Kennedy Center, Washington Monument, Potomac River and Georgetown. (You don't need to shell out the $400 nightly rate to drink here -- it'll be open to non-guests too.)

In keeping with its retro-luxury theme, the hotel just unveiled its new staff uniforms, a collection of designs by "Mad Men" costume designer Janie Bryant.

Set on the edge of the Potomac River in Washington D.C., the Watergate complex (there are condos and shops here too) gained international attention in 1972 when a break-in occurred at the Democratic National Committee's headquarters (in the same building as the hotel). The ensuing scandal ultimately led President Nixon to resign and cemented the name "Watergate" in American history.

The hotel later experienced financial difficulties and closed down in 2007. It's been unused since then; new owners Euro Capital Properties purchased the property in 2010 and set out to renovate and reintroduce it as a grand dame of the Washington hotel scene.

The Watergate is expected to open later this summer. And while the hotel is embracing its infamous past, we're taking bets that the next scandal here involves Olivia Pope and a glass of red on the rooftop.

Guide to the Watergate Scandal


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