The TWA Hotel Takes You Back to the Aviation Past

Prepare to take off at the TWA Hotel, rebuilt at the site of the original Trans World Airlines terminal in New York City,

Prepare to take off at the TWA Hotel, rebuilt at the site of the original Trans World Airlines terminal in New York City,

If you are interested in aviation or enjoy watching planes take off and land, then you might enjoy staying at the TWA Hotel, located at the John F. Kennedy Airport. The center of the hotel was originally the Trans World Airline (TWA) Flight Center, built in 1962. It has been restored to celebrate the “Golden Age” of air travel in the 1960s. The TWA Hotel has many exhibits about the history of the airline. It also has some interesting amenities such as a rooftop pool and a 1960s cocktail lounge in a former TWA airplane.

The TWA Flight Center was originally built in 1962 when Howard Hughes owned the airline and was designed by Eero Saarinen. The terminal was very modern and people loved the architecture and design of it. Some people said it looked like a winged bird in flight, according to the New York Times. However, the terminal became obsolete when wide-bodied jets were introduced and air travel increased rapidly. Many people did not want the terminal to be torn down and it eventually was declared a New York City historical landmark which protected it from being demolished.

The original TWA terminal was converted into the lobby of the hotel. It is now the center of the hotel with many shops, numerous exhibits about the history of the airline, and several classy restaurants. Behind the flight center are two huge hotel wings that contain 512 guest rooms, decorated in the ‘60s style. The guest rooms have soundproof windows and you can watch planes take off and land without hearing them. The hotel also has the world’s largest hotel gym, which is 10,000 square feet in size.

On the rooftop of one of the hotel wings is a rooftop pool which offers breathtaking views of the airport’s runway. In the winter, the pool is heated up to 95 degrees so it is like a giant jacuzzi. The pool is only open to hotel guests. The pool bar serves fancy drinks with amusing aviation-related names such as Jet Fuel and Vodka is My Co-Pilot, as well as appetizer-type food.

Outside the hotel there is a 60-year-old Lockheed Constellation aircraft that has been turned into a cocktail lounge nicknamed Connie. The lounge serves vintage snacks and cocktails and has cockpit access.

Throughout the whole hotel complex, there are museum exhibits that focus on TWA’s history and life in the ‘60s. More than 2,000 artifacts were collected, most of them donated by former TWA employees and their families. Exhibits include 37 full TWA uniforms from 1945 to 2001, travel posters, inflight menus, children’s activities, plane models, and toys from that era.

The TWA Hotel is a place that has something for everyone. Whether you are a child or an adult, watching planes take off and land never gets old. People of all ages can enjoy the fabulous pool, elegant restaurants, and historical exhibits.  Staying at the TWA Hotel will take you back to a time when air travel was more glamorous and much less stressful than it is today.