Hotel Offers Ground Zero Views
"People choose to be here because they want to be close to it. They want to feel it, they want to celebrate. They want to remember," said Cheryl Palmer, vice president of Club Quarters Inc., the company building the World Center Hotel to the Associated Press. "We have a very accessible view on it."
The hotel began accepting reservations last month for rooms with floor-to-ceiling views that look directly out to the construction site, complete with jackhammers and metal cranes. A restaurant patio will also have views of the rebuilding efforts, according to the AP.
Other hotels with similar views, like the Millennium Hilton, have worked to downplay the proximity to the site.
"People are sensitive to maybe being perceived as taking advantage of a tragedy by utilizing that in any kind of promotional information," Jan Larsen, general manager of the Hilton told the AP. "We still get customers here who didn't realize we were across the street from ground zero, and they get emotional about it."
The World Center Hotel, whose name alludes to the iconic structure that was reduced to rubble nearly a decade ago, is still a construction site in its own right. Most of the hotel's floors are a work in progress, and the patio and restaurant are currently being built.
According to the AP, the hotel plans to open 169 rooms, with introductory rates as low as $99 on weekends.
Palmer hopes that visitors will realize the hotel offers a chance to see a city on the mend. Trees are scheduled to be planted before the upcoming 10th anniversary of the attacks, and a public memorial is set to open sometime next year.
"They will have all those mixed emotions. But I think at the end of the day what people leave here with is the rebuilding."