Move over, Marriott. Kempinski has announced plans to operate the world’s tallest hotel... in Pyongyang, North Korea. While the JW Marriott Marquis Dubai has set its sights on being the record-holder for world’s tallest hotel when it debuts in early 2013, it will soon be eclipsed by the Ryugyong Hotel in Pyongyang, which will be the world’s highest at 370 meters. (The current title belongs to the Ritz-Carlton Hong Kong, which opened last year in the 102nd-118th floors of the International Commerce Centre-- 490 meters above the city).
Bloomberg Businessweek reports that North Korea “seeks foreign currency through a boost in tourism,” as tough international sanctions are imposed on the country. North Korea started construction on the pyramid-shaped Ryugyong in the 1980s, says the Associated Press, “but stopped when funding ran out in the 1990s.” The hotel is now being financed by Cairo-based Orascom Telecom, and when it opens in mid-2013, Kempinski will be the first western hotel company operating in North Korea.
Pictured: The Hotel Adlon Kempinski in Berlin