Ultra Swank - Retro Adventures

Pan Am Boeing 747 Cabin Recreated in Garage

Written by Christopher Alm • November 9th, 2011
Pan Am Boeing 747 Cabin Recreated in Garage

The jet set enjoying first class — Photo by Michael Kelley

Anthony Toth’s home in California holds a hidden treasure unknown to most of the world. From the outside, his garage looks like any garage – but step inside and you are transported back in time to a first class Pan Am Boeing 747 cabin, circa 1979.

Anthony, who works as a global sales director for United Airlines has had a lifetime dream of creating his childhood past traveling around Europe with Pan American airlines. He has spent 20 years and well over $50,000 to recreate his Pan Am cabin in great detail. Everything from the overhead bins, to the seat covers, to the inflight magazines and safety cards, are all period. Even the curved staircase leading up to the upper deck of the 747 is there.

Anthony eventually outgrew his garage and instead leased a warehouse big enough to fit a much bigger version of the cabin, including the upper first class lounge of the 747.

To help him recreate all the details and features, Anthony uses thousands of reference photos, taken by him self on his travels back in the 1970s and 1980s. While most kids are intrigued to go and see the cockpit in-flight, Anthony spent his time taking photos of the cabins. Everything from the galleys, seats, lights, color schemes etc. To source everything needed for his very own cabin, Anthony frequently visits a airplane scrapyard in California where he can strips the parts of a disused Boeing 747-200 to get anything needed to perfect his time traveling experience.

Mr. Toth hopes that he will one day in a near future be able to turn his cabin and Pan Am collection into a museum, open to the public. I for one, would love to experience all of this in person.

So, who wants to go to California with me?

Ps. For some great Boeing 747 in-flight tunes, get Space Age Lounge volume 3 and Eastern Airlines’ jingles featuring Astrud Gilberto.

Source Wall Street Journal   

Above: The upper deck lounge — Photo by Michael Kelley

Above: Movie time — Photo by Michael Kelley

Above: The clipper class cabin — Photo by Michael Kelley

Above: Meal Service — Photo by Michael Kelley

Above: An earlier version of Anthony’s 747 cabin

Christopher Alm

Christopher founded Ultra Swank in 2005. Has a crush on mid-century graphic design, defunct airlines, Disneyland and the Century 21 Exposition. Is a collector of easy listening music from the 60s and 70s and a Swedish expat living in Barcelona, Spain.

Find out more about Christopher Alm

  • Dcnussbaum

    He should have gone back a couple of more decades for his recreation (i.e.1960). Now, THAT would have been cool..

  • There was no 747 in the 1960s, it debuted in 1970. He also wanted to recreate his childhood past, meaning travelling with a Pan Am 747 in the 1970s and onwards.

  • Barbasol

    too awesome!

  • GoRetroPam

    I just discovered this site — wow, or should I say it’s an “outta” site! I write my own retro blog (Go Retro) and although this article is a few years old, I thought I should point out that most of the photos used are not from this guy’s garage, but from “The Pan Am Experience” at Air Hollywood. It’s a recreated Pan Am where people get dressed up (they have a dress code) and dine in the recreated aircraft. Here’s the link to it: http://airhollywood.com/panamexp/. Anyways, great photos and blog. I’m following along on Facebook and Twitter.

  • You are right. At first it was located in Anthony’s garage, I then believe he moved it to a warehouse. I guess they now moved it to an even bigger location. But the main part of the build was initially constructed in his garage.

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