Welcome back on board as we conclude this five-part flight back to the year 1962. If you missed any of the previous reviews, here they are:
The TWA Lounge at One World Trade Center
Today, as our flight back to 1962 concludes, we head across town to One World Trade Center. Here on the 86th floor is a recreation of the TWA Lounge and a collection of TWA artifacts and memorabilia.
The lounge is a magnificent recreation of how flying on TWA was in the 1960’s. This particular lounge was created as the inspiration for the building of the TWA Hotel and functions as its’ sales office. This lounge used to offer a monthly open house for the public, now it is no longer open to the public. I want to thank Edith Morris and Katie Groenke at Berlin Rosen for making my visit possible. My tour was led by Chris Betz of the TWA Hotel who created the TWA Lounge and TWA Hotel exhibits and is the curator. Chris also created a soundtrack of over 100 hours of vintage music from the 1960’s that plays at the TWA Hotel. You will hear the music of the early Beatles to Frank Sinata singing Come Fly With Me and Fly Me To The Moon among others.
The TWA Logo
The first thing you notice when you walk in is the TWA logo. TWA had one of the most iconic airline logos with the double-globe design. One of the challenges during the development of the TWA Hotel was recreating the original TWA font. Morse Development commissioned the design firm Pentagram to recreate the original TWA Flight Center Gothic font.
Stepping Into the Lounge
After passing the reception desk, you will enter the “sunken lounge”. This lounge was reproduced to scale on the main floor of the TWA Hotel. The centerpiece of the sunken lounge is the flight status “flapper board”. Before there were digital signboards, there were flapper boards. The TWA Hotel went to the Solari de Udine in Italy to recreate the original TWA flapper boards. Solari is the only company that still makes and supports flapper boards. There are 34,000 flaps in the sign and each sign costs $10,000 to make. When the entire board changes, you will hear that distinctive flapping noise for several seconds.
Here is a video of the board changing status. Listen to the harmony of the nostalgic soundtrack with the “flip-flap” sound of the board.
The Vintage Uniform Collection
TWA flight attendant uniforms were always designed by the major designers from Howard Greer in the 1940’s to Ralph Lauren in 2001. Some of the uniforms were made out of paper.
Artifacts and Memorabilia from 1962
Let’s take a look back. Did you ever use a rotary dial telephone or a Polaroid instant camera?
Heading Back to the Present
As we prepare to fly back to today, I want to thank the staff of the TWA Hotel and Berlin Rosen for their help to make this TWA series possible. I hope that you enjoyed your flight back to 1962.