Titanic: The Artifact Exhibition is a 25,000 square foot exhibit at the Luxor Hotel in Las Vegas. The exhibit features original artifacts and recreations of the Titanic, the famous ocean liner that sank in the North Atlantic in 1912. Original artifacts on display were pulled from over 2 miles below the ocean’s surface. Items include luggage, an unopened bottle of Champagne from 1900, china and silverware, serving dishes and stock pots, even clothing, jewelry and papers and documents.
Among the smallest artifacts found in the wreck is a child’s glass marble. Pieces of the ship itself include tiles from the floor of the first class smoking cabin, the ship’s whistles, a window frame from the ship’s café, and a piece of the ship’s hull. Over 250 authentic artifacts are on display and are frequently rotated in and out of the exhibit to preserve their fragile nature.
The exhibit features a life-sized recreation of the Titanic’s grand staircase, along with a temperature-controlled recreation of the ship’s outer decks, which allows guests to feel the same cold temperatures passengers would have experienced on the fateful April night in 1912. Reconstructed cabins display both third class and first class rooms, and are outfitted with recreated furnishings, made by the ship’s original manufacturers.
Timelines and history displays trace the journey of the ship from construction, to her eventual demise, to the recovery efforts and exploration that continues today. A child-friendly section of the exhibit clearly displays fun facts for kids about the ship’s design, and what life was like on the ship for staff, guests and even pets.
History: The Titanic was built in Belfast, Ireland in 1912 by shipbuilders Harland and Wolf for the White Star Line. The Titanic was designed for use as a cargo and passenger ship on trans-Atlantic voyages from England to America and back. The 882-foot long ship hosted over 2,200 passengers and close to 1,000 crew members. Deemed “practically unsinkable,” the ship went down on its maiden voyage from England to New York City in April of 1912 after striking an iceberg. The 52,000-ton ship fully sank in less than three hours. Some of the world’s wealthiest people were on board enjoying what was considered the ultimate in luxury amenities and décor. The majority of the ship’s passengers were in second and third class, including many immigrants hoping for a better life in the U.S. Due to outdated regulations, lifeboats on board were available for just over half of the ships nearly 2,300 passengers.
The wreckage of the ship was not discovered until 1985, 73 years after it sank. The French and U.S. team of Jean Louis Michel and Dr. Robert Ballard is credited with the find. Since then, over 5,000 artifacts have been recovered from the Titanic, via seven exploration expeditions. The eighth, and most ambitious expedition recovered the 15-ton piece of the hull that is now on display at the Luxor.
Many of the recovery efforts have been spearheaded and funded by RMS Titanic, Inc. who currently manages the wreck site. The publicly owned company is a division of Premier Exhibitions, Inc. It is their hope that through recovery and preservation efforts, artifacts from the ship may be used to educate the public on the disaster, the lives it changed, and the human experience of tragedy. The detailed recovery and restoration process involves documenting the artifacts and stabilizing them through a desalination exhibit that may take up to years, depending on the size of the object.
The Las Vegas Review Journal named the exhibit the Best of Las Vegas in 2011. Since the opening, over 25 million people have visited the Exhibition, making it the most viewed in the world.
Ongoing Programs and Education: The exhibit may be self-guided, or guests may elect to purchase an audio tour for additional information and commentary. The Titanic exhibit offers an engaging starting point for lessons in history, science, geography, math, technology and the social sciences. Curriculum guides are available for teachers who wish to create lesson plans that adhere to the educational standards of Arizona, California, Nevada and Utah. Group or school reservations are available for groups of 10 or more.
What’s Nearby: Combo tickets to Titanic: The Artifact Exhibition also include admissions to the Bodies: The Exhibition at the Luxor Hotel. The Bodies exhibit displays authentic human bodies partaking in athletic activities through an innovative preservation process which educates guests on anatomy and the life sciences.
3900 S Las Vegas Blvd Las Vegas, NV 89119, Phone: 702-262-4000