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Wentworth Hotel Was Empty Shell
Written by Ralph Morang
WENTWORTH BY THE SEA
We almost lost the Wentworth. The hotel was in such bad shape at the turn of the 21st century, according to one architect, that it could not have lasted another two years. Built in 1874, closed in 1982, the restored Victorian resort was on its last legs when these photos were taken for SeacaostNH.com in the year 2000.
We Almost Lost the Wentworth
For two decades Seacoast residents watched Wentworth by the Sea hotel deteriorate on a bluff in New Castle, NH. Each year, it seemed, there was a new owner, and the 256 acres that once surrounded the structure shrunk to four acres as the property was sold and resold by developers. Things got so bad that the Wentworth was used as a haunted backdrop for the film "In Dreams". In the movie, a man was eaten by a dog in his ruined hotel room. It doesn’t get any worse than that.
Today, with the hotel restored by Ocean Properties, it is difficult for new visitors to believe the building was on the nation’s most endangered list just a few years ago. Modernized, redesigned and bustling with activity, the 1874 Wentworth is again the center of a small universe. So lest we forget how close we came, here are a few images from the files of Seacoast photographer Ralph Morang. -- JDR