Once the most sophisticated creature in the air when it took off in 1956, this airplane is about to become party central for JFK Airport.

Only four Lockheed Constellation aircraft — “The Connie” — are still in existence, but this one is slated to become a cocktail lounge with waitresses dressed in vintage stewardess outfits.

The four-engine, propeller-driven plane, after it is renovated this winter, will be parked outside the landmark TWA Terminal at JFK where “Catch Me If You Can” was filmed.

It is the newest addition to an audacious, $265-million project that will turn the mid-century-modern terminal — opened in 1962 — into a luxury hotel and the hub of social life at the airport.

“A lot of aviators say it was the most beautiful aircraft ever designed,” says Tyler Morse, the real-estate developer who is rebuilding the TWA Terminal. The terminal itself was designed specifically to handle the Connie. he says.

The TWA Hotel, as it will be called, is set to open next spring, if current plans hold. It promises to employ more than 1,000 people, Morse says. The first job fairs for prospective workers are set to start shortly, officials say. (Details are available at twahotel.com.)

The hotel is conceived as a step back to the beginning of the jet age, the developer says. “We’re re-creating 1962 — without the cigarettes,” Morse told reporters last week at a media briefing at JFK.

The plane he showed off in an open hanger was bought from Lufthansa, the German airline, for an undisclosed sum earlier this year.

Taken out of service in the early 1960s after the introduction of the Boeing 707 — the first passenger jet — it found a second life ferrying oil wildcatters around Alaska.

Sometime in the 1970s, Morse said, it found its way into the hands of South American pot smugglers who abandoned it when it ran into a ditch in Honduras. Eventually it ended up at an airport in Maine, “where it has been sitting for the last 35 years,” he says.

With the wings and tail unbolted from the body, the Connie was transported by truck more than 320 miles to JFK three weeks ago. Over the winter, it will be restored to its original condition, inside and out, including the cockpit, says Morse.

Long banquettes will be installed down the two sides of the plane that, in its lounge mode, will accommodate about 120 people — reservations suggested.

Speaking of reservations, officials say they will begin accepting them for the hotel’s 512 guest rooms shortly after the new year.

The hotel will rescue the terminal — designed by architect Eero Saarinen, who also designed the St. Louis arch — from nearly 20 years of disuse. The building, one of the most recognizable pieces of modern architecture in the world, is a national landmark.

The problem was that the terminal, financed by Howard Hughes, was almost immediately obsolete. Saarinen had designed it to accommodate prop planes. But by the time it was completed, jets were taking over the skies. And the building was too small to handle them.

TWA shut it down shortly after 2000, then TWA itself went out of business, leaving behind a white elephant.

The Port Authority decided in 2015 to entertain proposals for preserving the building by turning it into the lobby for a hotel. Morse, a California investment banker who specializes in distinctive hotels — he is also the developer of the High Lines Hotel in Manhattan — won the competition.

The TWA Hotel will be the only hotel on the grounds of JFK. With 45 event rooms constructed underground, beneath the terminal’s old tarmac, the plan is to generate enough corporate meeting business, weddings and bar mitzvahs to make the new hotel a success.

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