Marriott World Trade Center

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Marriott World Trade Center
Marriott World Trade Center.jpg
The Marriott World Trade Center (bottom) below the Twin Towers.
Alternative names
  • Vista International Hotel
  • Three World Trade Center
General information
Status Destroyed
Type Hotel
Location 3 World Trade Center, Manhattan, New York City, New York
Coordinates 40°42′42″N 74°00′45″W / 40.71167°N 74.01250°W / 40.71167; -74.01250Coordinates: 40°42′42″N 74°00′45″W / 40.71167°N 74.01250°W / 40.71167; -74.01250
Construction started 1979
Completed 1981
Opening July 1981
Management Host Marriott Corporation
Roof 73.7 m (242 ft)
Technical details
Floor count 22
Design and construction
Architect Skidmore, Owings and Merrill
Developer Port Authority of New York and New Jersey
Structural engineer Leslie E. Robertson Associates
Main contractor Tishman Construction

The Marriott World Trade Center was a 22-story[1] steel-framed hotel building with 825 rooms. It opened in July 1981 as the Vista International and was located at 3 World Trade Center in New York City.

The Vista International Hotel was the first hotel to open in Lower Manhattan since 1836.[2] The building was designed by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill and was originally owned by the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey and KUO Hotels of Korea, with Hilton International acting as management agent. It was sold in 1995 to Host Marriott Corporation.

The hotel was connected to the North and South towers, and many went through the hotel to get to them. The hotel had a few establishments, including The American Harvest Restaurant, The Greenhouse Café, Tall Ships Bar & Grill, a store called Times Square Gifts, The Russia House Restaurant and a Grayline New York Tours Bus ticket counter. It also housed a gym that was the largest of any hotel in New York at the time, and a hair salon named Olga's. The hotel also had 26,000 square feet (2,400 m2) of meeting space on the entire 3rd floor, along with the New Amsterdam Ballroom on the main floor. It was considered a four-diamond hotel by AAA.[3]

The hotel was destroyed during the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, as a result of the collapse of the Twin Towers. The hotel will not be replaced as part of the new World Trade Center complex, but will rather share its name with the new office tower.

1993 World Trade Center bombing[edit]

On February 26, 1993, the hotel was seriously damaged as a result of the World Trade Center bombing. Terrorists took a Ryder truck loaded with 1,500 pounds (682 kilograms) of explosives and parked it in the One World Trade Center parking garage, below the hotel's ballroom. At 12:18pm (Eastern Time), an explosion destroyed or seriously damaged the lower and sub levels of the World Trade Center complex. After extensive repairs, the hotel reopened in November 1994.

September 11, 2001 attacks[edit]

3 World Trade Center after the attacks
Ground Zero debris with markup showing building locations.

On September 11, 2001, the hotel was at full capacity, and had over 1,000 registered guests. In addition, the National Association for Business Economics (NABE) was holding its yearly conference at the hotel.

After American Airlines Flight 11 crashed into the North Tower (1 WTC), the landing gear fell into the roof of the Marriott hotel. Firefighters used the lobby as the staging area, and were also in the hotel to evacuate guests that may have still been in the hotel. Firefighters also reported bodies on the roof from the people that had jumped or fallen from the burning towers. The collapse of the South Tower (2 WTC) split the hotel in half (such damage can briefly be seen in the documentary film 9/11), and the collapse of the North Tower destroyed the rest of the hotel aside from a small section (as seen on the picture) that was furthest from the north tower. Fourteen people who had been trying to evacuate the partially destroyed hotel after the first collapse managed to survive the second collapse in this small section. The section of the hotel that had managed to survive the collapse of the Twin Towers had been upgraded after the 1993 bombing.

As a result of the collapse of the Twin Towers, the hotel was destroyed. Only the south part of three stories of the building were still standing, all of which were gutted. In the remnants of the lobby, picture frames with the pictures were still hanging on the walls. Approximately 40 people died in the hotel, including two hotel employees and many firefighters who were using the hotel as a staging ground.[4] In January 2002, the remnants of the hotel were completely dismantled. The building and its survivors were featured in the television special documentary film Hotel Ground Zero, which premiered on September 11, 2009 on the History Channel.


  1. ^ Lew, H. S., Richard W. Bukowski, and Nicholas J. Carino. "Design, Construction, and Maintenance of Structural and Life Safety Systems (pdf)" (PDF). National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). 
  2. ^ Eisner, Harvey (April 2002). "Terrorist Attack At New York World Trade Center". Firehouse Magazine. 
  3. ^ "New York Marriott World Trade Center (archived website)". Archived from the original on 2001-03-02. Retrieved 2001-03-02. 
  4. ^ Dwyer, Jim; Fessenden, Ford (September 11, 2002). "One Hotel's Fight to the Finish; At the Marriott, a Portal to Safety as the Towers Fell". The New York Times. 

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