City Desk

Watergate Exxon Prices No Longer at Iconic Levels

When the famously expensive Watergate Exxon gas station closed for renovations and an operator switch last year, the fate of the station's prices was unclear. Always hovering high above prices elsewhere in the city—and even in the neighborhood—the Exxon's prices were a favorite of TV news crews looking to illustrate a story about rising gasoline costs.

The station formerly known as the Watergate Exxon reopened this week as a Valero, and that's not the only change, the Washington Times reports. The prices are downright average now—from $5.04 a gallon in its last days as the Exxon to a flat-out frugal $3.79 per gallon on Tuesday, according to the Times.

The difference between prices can be attributed to the Valero's new operator, Eddie Hassan. The station's previous operator, Roland Joun, feuded frequently with District gas king, Watergate Exxon owner, and local gasoline supplier Joe Mamo. In turn, Mamo jacked Joun's wholesale prices so high that the operator had to raise prices to their bizarrely steep levels.

Photo by Darrow Montgomery

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  • Novatronic

    Do they teach that style of negotiation at Wharton?

  • Jen Jen

    I always assumed it was just a drug front and the prices were high to keep customers away. It seemed to be working. In the four years I worked nearby, I never saw anyone pumping gas there.

  • pat b

    We always thought it was a CIA drop, you could come in get some gas and instructions