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Page last updated at 23:21 GMT, Tuesday, 21 July 2009 00:21 UK

Watergate Hotel attracts no bids

File photo of the Watergate Hotel, 1998
The Watergate Hotel has been closed since 2007

An attempted auction of the Watergate Hotel, part of a Washington landmark made famous by a presidential scandal, has failed to attract any bids.

The opening price on the hotel was $25m (£15.2m), but none of the 10 people registered to bid did so.

The Watergate Hotel is part of the US capital's Watergate Complex.

It housed the Democratic National Committee headquarters, which were broken into in the scandal leading to President Richard Nixon's resignation.

Four of the burglars stayed at the hotel before the 1972 break-in.

A company called Monument Realty, which bought the Watergate in 2004, closed the hotel two years ago but ran out of funds while trying to renovate it.

The firm had originally tried to convert the hotel into luxury flats.

Joseph Cooper, president of Alex Cooper Auctioneers, said before the auction started that it was a chance to invest in "one of the city's most famous landmarks".

The auction attracted dozens of spectators, including journalists and residents of the complex.

PB Capital Corp, which had loaned $40m to Monument Realty, will take back the property and attempt to find a buyer.



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