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 March 1979[1]
Completed April 1, 1981[2]
Opening July 1, 1981[3]
Destroyed September 11, 2001
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[4] steel-framed hotel building with 825 rooms. It opened in July 1981 as the Vista International Hotel and was located at 3 World Trade Center in Manhattan, New York City, with the World Trade Center complex having its own zip code of 10048. The hotel was destroyed beyond repair as a result of the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, after 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.

The Vista International was the first hotel to open in Lower Manhattan since 1836.[5] 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 Tour 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.[6]

1993 World Trade Center bombing[edit]

On Friday, February 26, 1993, the hotel was seriously damaged as a result of the World Trade Center bombing. Terrorists affiliated with al-Qaeda took a Ryder truck loaded with 1,500 pounds (682 kilograms) of explosives and parked it in the North Tower parking garage below the hotel's ballroom. At 12:18 PM (EDT), the 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]

The hotel destroyed after the attacks
Aerial photograph of the World Trade Center site with markup showing original locations. The hotel was located at 3 World Trade Center.

On Tuesday, 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.

When American Airlines Flight 11 crashed into the North Tower (1 WTC) at 8:46 AM EDT, its landing gear fell on the hotel's roof. Firefighters used the lobby as a staging area, and were also in the hotel to evacuate guests that may have still been inside. Firefighters also reported human remains or entire corpses on the roof from people that had jumped or accidentally fallen from the burning towers. The collapse of the South Tower (2 WTC) at 9:59 AM EDT split the building in half (such damage can briefly be seen in the documentary film 9/11), and the collapse of the North Tower at 10:28 AM EDT 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 beyond repair. Only the southern part of three stories of the building were still standing, all of which were eventually removed. In the remnants of the lobby, picture frames with the pictures inside them 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.[7]

In January 2002, the remnants of the hotel were completely dismantled. The National September 11 Memorial & Museum now exists where the hotel once stood.

The building and its survivors were featured in the television special documentary film Hotel Ground Zero, which premiered September 11, 2009 on the History Channel.


  1. ^ "Realty News World Trade Center Getting New Tenants". The New York Times. April 1, 1979. Retrieved May 26, 2018. 
  2. ^ "HOTEL IN THE TRADE CENTER GREETS ITS FIRST 100 GUESTS". The New York Times. April 2, 1981. Retrieved May 23, 2018. 
  3. ^ "The city's newest hotel, the Vista International, officially opened..." UPI. July 1, 1981. Retrieved May 23, 2018. 
  4. ^ 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). 
  5. ^ Eisner, Harvey (April 2002). "Terrorist Attack At New York World Trade Center". Firehouse Magazine. Archived from the original on 2009-09-27. 
  6. ^ "New York Marriott World Trade Center (archived website)". Archived from the original on 2001-03-02. Retrieved 2001-03-02. 
  7. ^ 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. 

External links[edit]