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Hotel Hightower

Hotel Hightower is the titular haunted location of the Tokyo Disneyland attraction, The Tower of Terror, which is directly tied to Mystic Manor and has a smaller, looser connection with the Haunted Mansion.

Description

Hotel Hightower is an abandoned fourteen story tall Gothic Revival/Neo-Moorish hotel located on 10016, One Park Avenue, New York City. It has been closed since New Year's Eve, 1899, and was only recently reopened by the New York City Preservation Society.

The hotel had many high-class amenities and themed entertainments for its guests, featuring shops, the Rajah's Pool, the Olympic Restaurant, the Aztec Gaming Room, a Solarium, the Alexandria Library, a Lady's Retiring Room, Gentleman's Smoking Room, Atlantis-themed Ballroom, the Pharaoh Explorer's Club Meeting Hall, a museum, and the Garden of the Sun located on the roof just below the main tower. The hotel's owner lived in a penthouse at the tower's apex.

Unbeknownst to many, the hotel also contains a secret warehouse of artifacts and underground tunnels connecting it to the waterfront. It is thought that stolen items were frequently sneaked into the hotel this way to avoid the customs office.

History

Elevator

The Hotel's Elevator after the disappearance of Harrison Hightower III

The Hotel was created and owned by Harrison Hightower III who, built it as an expansion to his wealthy family's mansion after inheriting it. It officially opened to the public in 1892, with much fanfare and a parade. Hightower intended the hotel to be a showcase of his extensive collection of arts and antiquities gathered from all over the world.

On New Year's Eve, 1899, Hightower brought a tribal African idol called Shiriki Utundu to the hotel, which Harrison disrespected by using it to extinguish his cigar. As punishment for the disrespect, Shiriki Utundu came to life and spirited away Harrison by blasting him down an elevator shaft, leaving him a ghost cursed to haunt his hotel.

In 1912, the Hotel was scheduled to be destroyed but the New York Preservation society named it a historic landmark and opened it up as a tourist attraction for visitors to learn of the mysterious disappearance of Harrison Hightower III, not knowing that the cursed idol Shiriki Utundu still roamed the halls of the hotel.

Trivia

  • The Hotel's design is loosely based on the real world Hearst Castle in California.
  • The Hotel is loosely based on the Hollywood Tower Hotel which is the titular location of the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror attraction which the Tokyo ride is based on. In the Hollywood Tower Hotel's backstory, five people entered the hotel elevator on the Halloween of 1939 when a bolt of supernatural lightning struck the building and caused the five guests to plummet down the shafts to their apparent deaths. The souls of the five victims remained trapped in the Hotel which became a haunted location which served as a portal to the mysterious 5th Dimension where the lightning originated from.
  • The Hotel's owner is implied to have been a relative of Constance Hatchaway's fifth husband, George Hightower.
  • The Hotel directory reveals that the hotel was one of the meeting places of S.E.A.
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