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Building the Cold War Hilton International Hotels and Modern Architecture cover
  • ISBN: 9780226894195
  • ISBN10: 0226894193

Building the Cold War Hilton International Hotels and Modern Architecture

by Annabel Jane Wharton

  • List Price: $77.00
  • Binding: Hardcover
  • Publisher: Univ of Chicago Pr
  • Publish date: 06/01/2001
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Description
In postwar Europe and the Middle East, Hilton Hotels were literally "little Americas", offering travelers cheeseburgers, air-conditioning, and respite from alien cultures. For impoverished local populations, the Hilton's modernity lent it a utopian aura, symbolizing the new, powerful presence of the United States.

Conrad Hilton claimed that these hotels were constructed for profit and for political impact, "to show the countries most exposed to Communism the other side of the coin". Here, Annabel Jane Wharton examines the architectural means by which this vision was executed, from the carefully drafted contracts for the buildings to the remarkable visual and social impact on their host cities. She offers a theoretically sophisticated critique of one of the Cold War's first international businesses and demonstrates that the Hiltons' role in the struggle against Communism was, as Conrad Hilton declared, significant, though in ways that he could not have imagined.

Many of these postwar Hiltons still flourish. Those who stay in them will learn a great deal about their experience from this new assessment of hotel space.

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