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Ryugyong Hotel Pyongyang, North Korea | by Eric Lafforgue
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Ryugyong Hotel Pyongyang, North Korea

The Ryugyong Hotel is a 105-floor skyscraper under construction in Pyongyang, North Korea. Its name comes from one of the historic names for the city of Pyongyang, and means "capital of willows"; the building is also known as the 105 building, a reference to its number of floors. Construction began in 1987, but was halted in 1992 due to the economic disruptions that afflicted the country following the fall of the Soviet Union. The hotel stood topped out but without windows or interior fittings for the next sixteen years, until construction resumed in April 2008, under the supervision of the Orascom Group of Egypt, which has invested heavily in the North Korean mobile telephony and construction industries.

The hotel rises to a height of 330 metres (1,080 ft), and it contains 360,000 square metres (3,900,000 sq ft) of floor space, making it the most prominent feature of the city's skyline and by far the largest structure in North Korea. Construction of the Ryugyong was intended to be completed in time for the World Festival of Youth and Students in June 1989; had this been achieved, it would have become the world's tallest hotel. The unfinished structure was not surpassed in height by another hotel until the completion of construction on the Rose Tower in Dubai, UAE in 2009.

In november 2012, Kempinsky annouced they planned to open the hotel in 2013.

© Eric Lafforgue

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Taken on April 25, 2010