In 2008, after 16 years of sitting listlessly, construction restarted on the 105-story building. It’s hard to imagine how that could even happen. Imagine 16 years of the elements pounding away at the building’s concrete skeleton, and then imagine finding construction workers who could pick up where others left off.
But now, 25 years after breaking ground, North Korean officials have opened still-unfinished hotel up for visitors, and some folks from travel agency specializing in North Korea have become the first Westerners to take pictures inside the structure. The first thing you notice is how audacious the plans actually are. Sure, the aged concrete and rusty guardrails make it clear that the structure has been sitting for some time, but it’s incredible that it was even built in the first place.