A complete & comprehensive guide to the Ryugyong Hotel, Pyongyang; the world's tallest unoccupied building, and one of the most famous hotels in North Korea.
Introduction to the Ryugyong Hotel
The Ryugyong Hotel (류경려관) is the tallest hotel in North Korea. The name means 'capital of willows'.
It is a large pyramid shape hotel with glass panels on the facade which host an LED light show of an evening. It is currently listed in the Guinness World Records for being the world's tallest unoccupied building. It is 105 stories, and 330-metres (1,080 ft) tall.
Construction first began in 1987 but has started an stopped multiple times over the years largely due to projects investing and then pulling out of investments.
As of May 2019, it remains unoccupied.
Ryugyong Hotel Architecture
The Ryugyong Hotel is the tallest building in Pyongyang standing at an impressive 330 metres (1,080 ft). It can be seen from many locations throughout Pyongyang, as it is the most prominent feature of Pyongyang's skyline.
- The Ryugyong Hotel has 3 wings. Each wing is 100 metres (330 ft) long, 18 metres (59 ft) wide. These three wings slope at a 75-degree angle, converging together at the top to form a pyramid shape.
- The top of the Ryugyong Hotel is a cone (top of the pyramid spire) that is 40 metres (130 ft) wide. Inside this cone, there are 8 floors that rotate, and 6 further floors that are static. This cone section is to be the home to revolving restaurants.
- The number of rooms in the Ryugyong Hotel is not confirmed, but sources suggest something between 3000-7,665.
History of the Ryugyong Hotel
The Ryugyong Hotel has a rocky history, at best.
For a more comprehensive look at the history of the Ryugyong Hotel and find out what's happening now, head to our History of the Ryugyong Hotel blog.
Let's start at the beginning...
1987 - Construction begins
1987 - 1992: Construction continues
1992 - Construction Ceases
2008 - Construction restarts
2011 - Construction ceases a second time
Early 2018 - Entrance driveway completed, lights show on the top of the pyramid structure
Late 2018 - Light show on the complete outside of the entire Ryugyong Hotel structure becomes regular
2019 - Is the Ryugyong Hotel still empty? In short; Yes. Let's wait and see what 2019 brings!
Inside the Ryugyong Hotel
The Ryugyong Hotel is still under construction.
Upon completion, the Ryugyong Hotel originally planned to have somewhere between 3000-8000 rooms, and 5 revolving restaurants. Since then, plans have been revised. But we may have to wait until the completion of the Ryugyong Hotel before we know what the inside will truly contain!
For exclusive images of inside the Ryugyong Hotel click here.
Visit the Ryugyong Hotel
It is currently not possible to enter the Ryugyong Hotel.
Koryo Tours remain the only travel company, and only foreigners to have ever been inside the Ryugyong Hotel since it is still under construction. There is no official opening date for the Ryugyong Hotel - yet.
Once the Ryugyong Hotel opens, we will be the first to know and the first to start hosting tours in this infamous hotel.
Follow our social media for the first updates on the Ryugyong Hotel!
Hotels in Pyongyang
Other hotels in Pyongyang include;
March 8th Hotel
Yanggakdo International Hotel
Changgwang Guest House
You can stay at these hotels as a tourist in Pyongyang. Our standard tours often include the Yanggakdo International Hotel, Sosan Hotel and Chongyon Hotel. Private tours can upgrade their stay to the Koryo Hotel.