History and luxury in a surviving grand hotel in the Granite State

  The Mount Washington Hotel, with the Presidential Range looming above.

The Mount Washington Hotel, with the Presidential Range looming above.

The Mount Washington Hotel, in Bretton Woods, N.H., is one of the few remaining grand hotels/ resorts from the great age of such institutions, around the turn of the last century. It's expensive to stay there but provides wonderful memories of adventures during each of the White Mountains' dramatic four seasons. Its service is superb and recall being on a luxury transatlantic ocean liner before big jets pretty much ended that business. Just sitting on the hotel's vast porch in good weather is a joy.

New Hampshire's coastal equivalent of the Mount Washington Hotel is Wentworth-by-Sea, in New Castle.

In July 1944, the hotel was the site of the Bretton Woods International Monetary Conference, which helped stabilize the post-World War II economic and political world by establishing the World Bank and International Monetary Fund. (The United Nations was officially funded a year later, at the San Francisco Conference.)

But now the Bretton Woods arrangements are under stress from a revival of short-sighted extreme nationalism, with its accompanist protectionism. Sad. The conference helped make possible the greatest stretch of widely shared prosperity in history.