D.C.’s Union Station among most beautiful in the world

WASHINGTON – You may rush through Union Station on your way to the Metro or to the next train, but if you stop and take a moment, you may see why Travel + Leisure recently named the station one of the most beautiful in the world.

Union Station in D.C. is one of three stations in the United States that made Travel + Leisure’s list.

The magazine highlights the station, “built in the Beaux-Arts style in the early 20th century” for the more than 70 pounds of old gold leafing in the station’s coffered plaster ceiling.

Union Station officially opened its door 6:50 a.m., Oct. 27, 1907, “when the Baltimore and Ohio Pittsburgh Express pulled into the Station,” according to the Union Station website.

The station was completed in 1908.

The original construction on the building cost more than $25 million, with the Italian laborers working on the project staying in camp cars.

During World War I, troops mobilized through Union Station, with many prominent women working in the stations canteen: Eleanor Roosevelt and Mrs. Woodrow Wilson.

In 1981, Congress enacted the Union Station Redevelopment Act of 1981 to preserve Union Station as a national treasure. The restoration took two years and cost $160 million.

The list of most beautiful stations on Travel + Leisure’s list:

  • Antwerp Central Station, Belgium
  • St. Pancras International, London
  • CFM Railway Station, Maputo, Mozambique
  • Sirkeci Station, Istanbul
  • Southern Cross Station, Melbourne
  • Kanazawa Station, Kanazawa, Japan
  • Atocha Station, Madrid
  • Union Station, Los Angeles
  • Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus, Mumbai
  • S

More from WTOP

Log in to your WTOP account for notifications and alerts customized for you.

Sign up