Flying visit of a vintage plane

A high-flier visited New York at the weekend.

The fuselage of a vintage airplane owned by the now-defunct Trans World Airlines (TWA) in the 1950s toured New York City, ending its journey at Times Square, where it was parked until Sunday.

Tourists and locals alike were treated to the sight of the 35m-long plane on the streets of Manhattan before it was taken to the new TWA Hotel in John F. Kennedy International Airport, where it will open as a hotel bar in May.

The fully restored 1958 Lockheed Constellation's trip through New York City was filmed for an upcoming documentary about the redevelopment of the TWA Flight Centre into the TWA Hotel.

Lovingly nicknamed "Connie", the type of aircraft broke the transcontinental speed record in 1946, and served as Air Force One for then United States President Dwight D. Eisenhower in the 1950s, according to the official website of the TWA Hotel.

The plane was so special to TWA that in 1955, the airline erected an eight-storey billboard of the Constellation in Times Square. Its temporary parking spot in Times Square was close to the area where the billboard hung from 1955 to 1960.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 26, 2019, with the headline 'Flying visit of a vintage plane'. Print Edition | Subscribe