'Hotel of doom' that cost £600 million has never had a guest stay over
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Most people have experienced what they'd probably describe as a 'hotel of doom' at one time or another, but there's one building out there which is apparently the most doomed hotel of all.
Unlike most undesirable hotels, this one doesn't feature clearly-used bedsheets, gross food and bad reviews, because it's never had the chance.
In fact, since the hotel was built, it's never housed a single guest.
Located in North Korea's capital Pyongyang, ground was broken on the Ryugyong Hotel in 1987, with plans for it to open two years later.
The opening of the hotel was supposed to coincide the 1989 World Festival of Youth and Students, and was intended to break the record for the world's tallest hotel, which at the time was held by a South Korean firm.
Builders got to work, and the pyramid-shaped hotel was established as part of the skyline of Pyongyang. It exceeds 1,000 feet in height with 105 storeys, and was designed to have as many as 3,000 rooms and five restaurants.
But despite costing approximately £600 million, progress on the building has been stilted over the years.
It reached its planned height in 1992, but with North Korea heading for an economic crisis construction was then halted, with a crane left abandoned on the top of the building.
For the following 16 years, the Ryugyong Hotel stood hollow, with its naked concrete exterior looming over the surrounding buildings.
It was during that time that the menacing structure earned itself the nickname the 'Hotel of Doom'.
After the lengthy break, the crane was removed and the Ryugyong Hotel was clad in metal and glass which cost £144m.
In late 2012, German hotel group Kempinski announced that it would be partially opening the Ryugyong under its management the following year. Just a few months later, however, the company pulled out.
More than 30 years since work began, the hotel is still yet to open to guests - though one man who's been inside the building has made clear that it's not exactly a welcoming environment.
Simon Cockerell, general manager of a company specializing in North Korea tours, told CNN: "They took us into the lobby area, where there was a lot of exposed cement. Then we went (on) the one working elevator to the top, which was the 99th floor, I believe.
“It took a long time to get there, because it was a service elevator, not a modern lift with a string of buttons. There was a lift operator who determined where to stop. At the top we had a look around, took some pictures and went back down to the lobby again.”
It would apparently cost £1.6 billion to complete the hotel, according to Reuters.
Further work on the hotel took place in 2018, when it was fitted with LED lights in an attempt to make it a bit more pleasant to look at, as well as a sign which simply read: "The Ryugyong Hotel”.
It's still not open for bookings, though. Who knows if it ever will be?