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The World’s Largest Hotel Lobby is in a Surprising Place

Imagine the world’s largest hotel lobby. Where do you think it would be?

Your first guess is probably some giant, sprawling city with cheap real estate, like Las Vegas. Or maybe you pictured a huge building in an oil-rich country in some far-flung geography.

Actually, the world’s largest hotel lobby isn’t in either of those places. In fact, it’s in a city with some of the priciest land in the world: San Francisco.

The Hyatt Regency’s Massive Lobby

The world’s largest hotel lobby is in the Hyatt Regency Embarcadero Hotel in downtown San Francisco, California.

The hotel holds a Guinness Book record for its absolutely massive lobby. Built in 1973, the Hyatt Regency’s lobby is a sprawling 42,000 square feet.

You could fit 22 average-sized California homes into this architectural behemoth. 

In addition to its massive square footage, the Hyatt Regency’s lobby extends upwards for 15 stories, creating an absolutely gargantuan interior space.

The lobby is so big that it accommodates a massive, multi-story metal sculpture called Eclipse. Eclipse is so large that it was constructed first, and then the hotel was built around it. Yet it feels like a small embellishment in this absolutely insane lobby space.

Visiting the Largest Lobby

I recently got a chance to visit the Hyatt Regency’s gigantic lobby when the hotel hosted me for a stay. 

It really is an awe-inspiring thing to see in person. It feels big at ground level, but the effect is truly the most powerful when you ride the Hyatt Regency’s glass elevators to the top floor and look down at the lobby from above. The space feels way larger than the Ferry Building, a classic building nearby.

With the incredible volume of the space, it’s hard to believe that you’re inside. I had to alternate between leaning towards to edge to snap photos, and darting back because the height was so dizzying.

See it for Yourself

The cool thing about this architectural surprise is that you can easily see it for yourself. 

You can book a stay at the Hyatt Regency, or stop by its Eclipse bar for a drink in this record-setting lobby space.

Thomas Smith

Thomas Smith is a food and travel photographer and writer based in the San Francisco Bay Area. His photographic work routinely appears in publications including Food and Wine, Conde Nast Traveler, and the New York Times and his writing appears in IEEE Spectrum, SFGate, the Bold Italic and more. Smith holds a degree in Cognitive Science (Neuroscience) and Anthropology from the Johns Hopkins University.

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