April Fools: Telegraph Touts Bogus Leaning Tower of Pisa Hotel

train in Ventimiglia Italy heading to the French Riviera
Train in Ventimiglia Italy // Photo by andrea_sosio/iStock/Getty Images Plus/Getty Images

leaning tower of pisaIt wouldn't be April 1 without a few weird travel stories making the rounds on the Internet. The Daily Telegraph has continued the tradition with a story on an unusual plan for a luxury hotel in the Leaning Tower of Pisa. 

The hotel, jokingly dubbed 3.99 Degrees, is said to be a result of a 50-year lease to an "anonymous Dubai investment firm." Other odd touches include specially crafted beds with legs of varying length and a two-hour window each day for tourists not staying in the hotel to make the trek to the top. 

As with some of the best pranks, this story contains just enough truth to be plausible. Back in 2012 London's Admiralty Arch was leased for £60 million to be developed as a luxury hotel, so the Leaning Tower would not have been the first historic landmark leased out in this way. 

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Had the plan been real, it would have faced numerous obstacles. The Leaning Tower is not large, and the article admitted that each floor would only have space for a single bedroom, with no onsite cooking or dining areas. A plan to add working plumbing to the ancient, crumbling stone tower seemed more like wishful thinking. The potential for hotel sledding, though, would have been amazing. 

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