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Radisson Hotel (Golden Triangle Hotel)
When it opened in 1961, this building was an example of an exciting and innovative urban trend: the motor hotel. Built on restricted sites along congested downtown streets, older hotels could not keep pace with suburban motels in an age when travelers increasingly arrived by automobile rather than by railroad. Racially integrated from its opening, the Radisson Hotel also helped to close a tarnished chapter of the city's past.
The Radisson was originally known as the Golden Triangle Hotel because of its location on a wedge-shaped plot, formerly the site of one of the city's worst slums. The multi-use structure combines guest rooms, meeting facilities, offices, shops, and restaurants. As designed by Anthony F. Musolino, a long driveway, flanked by two curving ramps, leads to the motor entrance; there was once a circular fountain at its center. Glass curtain walls sheathe the thirteen-story V-shaped tower. Behind the tower, two motel-like wings stretch to the rear of the site with a pool at their center and parking spaces around their perimeter. In contrast to the relatively staid exterior, the hotel's interiors were the work of Morris Lapidus, the flamboyant designer of the Fontainebleau (1952) and Eden Roc (1954) hotels in Miami Beach. The guest rooms and the public areas projected an aura of sophistication and modernity that must have made Norfolk's other hotels
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