Ambitious architects in Amsterdam have converted an old beast of a crane into a luxury hotel, complete with swanky rotating suites, spa pools and a TV broadcasting station.
The 250 ton, 50-meter high, decades old maritime crane is actually one of the world’s oldest and highest mechanical structures. It was almost in ruins, doomed to a life of decay, when a group of daredevil architects from various Dutch companies decided to get together and give it a new lease on life.
Despite being dismissed as ‘technically impossible’, they decided to take on the task of converting the old crane into a world class luxury hotel. The project was not easy – they had to lay new foundations to withstand the weight of the massive structure, because the quay of the old wharf was simply not strong enough. Developers splurged nearly a million dollars on constructing each room. They even fitted the structure with a thrust bearing made of gold, allowing each suite to rotate with the wind.
Gotta love all them old former Canadian Pacific Railway Hotels, like the similarly gorgeous other ones – the Banff Springs Hotel (also designed by Price) and the Chateau Lake Louise in Alberta, the Chateau Laurier in Ottawa, the Royal York in Toronto… Oh, they are glorious, but indeed, the Chateau Frontenac is truly the grandest of them all, in its design.