Ryugyong Hotel: Where Not to Stay When Vacationing in North Korea


Always a nice treat when you run across an interesting article that you’re eager to post, only to find that it was written by someone you know. This time around, it’s Eva Hagberg of UnBeige 2.0, writing in Esquire about the Ryugyong Hotel in North Korea, fittingly described in the piece’s title, “The Worst Building in the History of Mankind.” Not only are we super impressed to see Eva’s name at Esquire, the piece itself is absurdly interesting, as most things are in the backward world of North Korea, and there’s a handful of video clips to boot, so we suggest, because we know you’re not doing anything this morning as you suffer through a Super Bowl hangover, that you drop what you’re doing and read it immediately. Here’s a bit:

With 75 degree sides that rise to an apex of 1,083 feet, the Hotel of Doom (also known as the Phantom Hotel and the Phantom Pyramid) isn’t the just the worst designed building in the world — it’s the worst-built building, too. In 1987, Baikdoosan Architects and Engineers put its first shovel into the ground and more than twenty years later, after North Korea poured more than two percent of its gross domestic product to building this monster, the hotel remains unoccupied, unopened, and unfinished.