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Old December 23rd, 2008, 08:41 PM   #141
Mr. Alloy
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Wow! This is truly shocking. I figured once the regime fell, someone would finally get around to tearing this down. I never thought they would actually continue to build it.

And I agree with others, although I'm happy to see any building going up (especially during this economic crisis here in the U.S. that has stalled out other supertalls), whatever crisis we have here is nothing compared to North Korea. Get your priorities straight, loonies!
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Old December 23rd, 2008, 08:49 PM   #142
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I have thoughts that north korea must have borrowed money from CHINA to continue the construction of this hotel. Otherwise this building would've stalled for centuries (nothing would've resumed with north koreans them selves)
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Old December 23rd, 2008, 09:00 PM   #143
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It's a Saudi Arabian developer according to sources earlier in this thread.
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Old December 23rd, 2008, 09:27 PM   #144
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Saudi Arabian?
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Old December 24th, 2008, 12:28 AM   #145
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i'll just quote a text from independent.co.uk site with a little bit longer explanation:

Quote:
A hotel in Pyongyang once described as "the worst building in the history of mankind" is back under construction after a 16-year break.

According to foreign residents, the Egyptian conglomerate Orascom has just begun refurbishing the top floors of the pyramid-shaped Ryugyong Hotel, whose 330m (1,083ft) frame dominates the skyline of the capital of North Korea, which is one of the world's most reclusive and destitute countries.

The firm has put glass panels into the concrete shell, installed telecommunications antennae – even though the North forbids its citizens to own mobile phones – and put up an artist's impression of what it will look like. An official with the group said its Orascom Telecom subsidiary was involved in the project, but gave no details. The hotel consists of three wings rising at 75-degree angles capped by several floors arranged in rings, which are supposed to hold five revolving restaurants and an observation deck. A creaky building crane has for years sat unused at the top of the 3,000-room hotel in a city that tourists are only occasionally allowed to visit.

"It is not a beautiful design. It carries little iconic or monumental significance, but sheer muscular and massive presence," Lee Sang Jun, a professor of architecture at Yonsei University in Seoul, South Korea, said.

The communist North started construction in 1987 in a possible fit of jealousy at South Korea, which was about to host the 1988 summer Olympics and show off to the world the success of its rapidly-developing economy. A concrete shell built by North Korea's Paektu Mountain Architects & Engineers emerged over the next few years. A proud North Korea put a picture of the hotel on postage stamps and boasted about the structure in the state media.

According to intelligence sources, the then North Korean leader, Kim Il-sung, saw the hotel as a symbol of his big dreams for the state he founded, while his son and current leader, Kim Jong-il, was a driving force in its construction. But by 1992, work was halted. The North's main benefactor, the former Soviet Union, had dissolved a year earlier and funding for the hotel had vanished. For a time, the North airbrushed images of the Ryugyong Hotel from photographs. As the North's economy took a deeper turn for the worse in the 1990s, the empty shell became a symbol of the country's failure, earning the nicknames "Hotel of Doom" and "Phantom Hotel".

Mr Lee and other architects said there were questions raised about whether the hotel was structurally sound, and a few believed completing the structure could cause it to collapse.

It would cost up to $2bn (£1bn) to finish the Ryugyong Hotel and make it safe, according to estimates in South Korea's media. That is equivalent to about 10 per cent of the North's annual economic output. Bruno Giberti, the associate head of California Polytechnic State University's department of architecture, said the project was typical of what has been produced recently by many cities which were trying to show their emerging wealth by constructing gigantic edifices that were not related in scale to anything else around them.

Mr Giberti, when asked about Esquire magazine's comment about the hotel, said: "If this is the worst building in the world, the runners-up are in [Las] Vegas and Shanghai."
and i found a news report few days ago from official news agency of DPRK:

Quote:
Kim Yong Il Meets Egyptian Delegation
Pyongyang, December 15 (KCNA) -- Kim Yong Il, premier of the DPRK Cabinet, met and had a friendly talk with the delegation of the Orascom Telecom Holding of Egypt headed by its Chairman and CEO Naguib Sawiris at the Mansudae Assembly Hall today.

On hand were Ryu Yong Sop, minister of Post and Telecommunications, officials concerned and Egyptian Ambassador to the DPRK Ismail Abdelrahman Ghoneim Hussein.
so Orascom is building all of that cause of mobile monopoly that is going on...
i imagine it will have a nice big logo on it underneath the korean flag
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Old December 24th, 2008, 01:39 PM   #146
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Saudi Arabian?
Or perhaps it was Egyptian?
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Old December 24th, 2008, 02:36 PM   #147
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Same, same
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Old December 24th, 2008, 02:58 PM   #148
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Quote:
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Same, same
Don't you mean "same difference"......

Anyways, to me this got to be the most interesting project right now. I can't wait to see it completed.
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Old December 25th, 2008, 01:20 PM   #149
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There's something I love about the hugeness and ugliness of this monolith...
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Old December 25th, 2008, 08:39 PM   #150
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I loved it when it was incomplete. It looked very spooky and bizarre in a good way.
Im not sure how I will feel once its complete.
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Old December 26th, 2008, 02:35 AM   #151
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It did look spooky, actually. In my eyes, it appeared to be the world's largest tombstone, memorializing the "death" of the North Korean economy. Perhaps when it is completed, it will be viewed as a monument to the resurgence of the North Koreans.
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Old December 26th, 2008, 03:17 AM   #152
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OMG! this building looks so sinister to me! its a huge white elephant jotting out of the city.

it looks so "evil"! hahaha
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Old December 26th, 2008, 05:48 AM   #153
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With all the glass on it, I think it could look fantastic.
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Old December 26th, 2008, 06:34 AM   #154
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Yuh it will look great...
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Old December 26th, 2008, 10:42 AM   #155
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To me the building is designed by some 7 year old kid who watches a lot of space cartoons to be honest...
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Old December 26th, 2008, 11:29 AM   #156
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Wow! Look at this thread's replies and views.
This tread have 190 replies for now(with 18927 views)

Ironically, Ryugyong Hotel gets lots of attention here, even though most of replies are bad ones.

Compare to south korean supertall(for examples, Parc1(333m, 3m taller than Ryugyong Hotel) barely got attention here with few replies, Ryugyong is more popular in good ways or bad ways anyway.

To me, Ryugyong Hotel is quite good with impressive height and nice design
Frankly, it is much better than south korean's ugly boxy apartment buildings in Seoul.
Beside north korea, when it comes to bulilding, Ryugyong Hotel itself did nothing wrong.
Please, don't put all blame on it.

picture from Flickr
image hosted on flickr
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Old December 26th, 2008, 04:09 PM   #157
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Agree +1

The tower looks great. *not designed by some 7 year old kid who watches a lot of space cartoons
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Old December 27th, 2008, 04:41 AM   #158
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Quote:
Originally Posted by buildmilehightower View Post
To me the building is designed by some 7 year old kid who watches a lot of space cartoons to be honest...
I think you're giving him a lot of credit thinking he's 7, I was thinking it looks like it was designed by a 5 year old! Totally boring design that lacks originality.
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Old December 27th, 2008, 06:50 AM   #159
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Msradell View Post
I think you're giving him a lot of credit thinking he's 7, I was thinking it looks like it was designed by a 5 year old! Totally boring design that lacks originality.
Lacks originality? Name one building that looks like it.
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Old December 27th, 2008, 06:59 AM   #160
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Msradell View Post
Totally boring design that lacks originality.
HUH? I musta missed the building it copied. Where is that one anyway?

This is a wicked looking structure, but I like the design and can't wait to see it finished.
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