In the vein of The Residence and This Town, this absorbing history features a remarkable cast of politicians, journalists, socialites, and spies who made the Watergate the most famous—and some say infamous—private address in Washington.
Opened in 1965 and located along the Potomac River in Washington, DC’s Foggy Bottom neighborhood, the Watergate became one of the capital’s chicest addresses, a hub for powerbrokers and the epicenter of a scandal that brought down a president. In The Watergate, writer and political consultant Joseph Rodota skillfully paints a vivid portrait of this historical landmark whose name has become an indelible part of the cultural zeitgeist.
Rodota introduces us to the Watergate’s movers and shakers, both famous and unknown, who made the Beltway tick over five decades. Anna Chennault was known as the "Tiger Hostess" for the lavish dinners and cocktail parties in her penthouse, where her companion Tommy Corcoran, Washington’s first "super lobbyist," played piano.
The irrepressible Martha Mitchell, wife of Nixon attorney general and campaign manager John Mitchell, captivated the nation with a stream of outrageous interviews and phone calls from her Watergate duplex. The Watergate housed Nancy and Ronald Reagan’s California posse in the 1980s. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg celebrated New Year’s Eve at the Watergate with Antonin Scalia and their spouses. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice gave chamber music concerts in her Watergate living room. Longtime residents Elizabeth and Bob Dole lived next door to Monica Lewinsky and her mother.
The Washington Post once favorably compared the Watergate to the Titanic: a concrete-and-steel version of the luxurious ocean liner, ahead of its time. The Watergate is an engaging and eye-opening inside look at the passengers and crew of this legendary building.