Thursday, 15 October 2009

The world's ugliest...building

Just been reading a bit of news about a hotel in North Korea, that has been dubbed "the worst building in the history of mankind", and also labelled as "The Hotel of Doom" and "The Phantom Hotel".

What's the reason behind the name?

Well, apparently work started on the hotel in 1987, yes, that's right, 22 years ago, and it is still not open to the public to stay in, after North Korea's economy nosedived, and the hotel, situated in the capital Pyongyang, was a victim of cut backs, and work ceased on the project.

Looking from afar, it is a massive construction, with a pyramind shape to it, and at the summit of athe hotel, where you can currently see the crane, will be a revolving restaurant!

The Ryugyong Hotel, it's official title, is possibly scheduled to be opened in 2012, just 25 years then after work started on it, as a 100 year anniversary of the birth of Kim Il Sung, who was North Korea's "Eternal president" and father of the current president, and resided in power for 46 years before his death in 1994.

So, work has re-started then on what will be an ugly but fascinating landmark, which begs the question what other landmarks, would you describe as ugly?

There are a few in the UK, the most notable I can think of is the Angel of the North, which is based just south of Newcastle, in North East England, the idea was great, but the actual production, not so great, as you'll see from the picture.

Another ugly one is the O2 Arena, in London, which was originally built as the Millenium Dome, to house an education facility, but that went horribly wrong, and all of a sudden £800m had been spent on a pink elephant it seemed. But then along came O2 to liven the place up and turn it into a concert venue.

Just up the road is the Gherkin building which houses financial companies, looks just like a see through rocket, but doesn't half stand out, it has won awards since it was constructed, but whether it looks right in amongst London's historic venues is open to debate.

If you are reading this please feel free to list some pictures in your comments of some ugly buildings near you, or in your country!


  1. I just went to London this past summer and I have to say one of the ugliest things there that is completely devastating the otherwise beautiful city is that damn ferris wheel! The London Eye was supposed to be a visiting attraction, why in the world did they keep it there?!

    Anyway, interesting post. But I have to say, none of these buildings strike me as ugly, including the Korean one!


  2. ok, usually I hear about something ugly and I go look and it's not as bad as I thought. The Ryugyong Hotel for example isn't so bad. BUT, what where they thinking when they built the Angel of the North? Is that a real building?

  3. Jeff, Thet 02 arena looks like a plate with knives stuck in it, the ugliest capital bulding has to be in Oklahoma city, complete with working oil wells on site, lol.

  4. I think those buildings are incredibly fascinating. I mean, I can't physically imagine anyone thinking to create a giant rocket to set in the middle of London..

    But I guess that's what makes this world strange. And that dome thing? I would see a concert there any day. Australia is very square compared, or maybe I just haven't yet experienced the 'real' cities.

    You've inspired me to..notice architecture further.

    Cheers :)

  5. Well at least I've done something good AF!

    ...and yes, they really did build the Angel of the North - how ugly!