The memorial consists of the main mast of the USS Maine set upright into the center of a circular, stylized mausoleum shaped to look like a battleship gun turret. The structure is 90 feet (27 m) in diameter and 15 feet (4.6 m) high. The mast pierces the roof the memorial, and is sunk into the floor inside. The mausoleum is constructed of reinforced concrete, sheathed in tan granite on the outside and white marble on the interior. The names and ranks of those who died aboard the Maine are carved into the exterior of the mausoleum, organized into 23 panels. There are eleven slit windows with bronze grills in the structure. The interior roof is a shallow dome, and the interior floor is lined with mosaic tile. The single entry to the mausoleum has two doors. The inner door is made of wood, and half the ship's bell (retrieved from the ocean floor in 1911) is attached to the outer side of this door. The outer door is a bronze gate decorated with metal rope and anchors. Ceremonial stone funeral urns stand on either side of the entryway. Above the door is carved the following: "Erected in memory of the officers and men who lost their lives in the destruction of the U.S.S. Maine, Habana, Cuba, February 15, 1898".
A road encircles the memorial. On the east side of the memorial is a concrete pad on which the anchor manufactured in 1900 sits. Two bronze Spanish mortars, cast in the 1700s and captured by Admiral Dewey during the Spanish-American War at Cavite Arsenal in the Philippines, flank the anchor. Originally, these mortars were placed atop brick piers with concrete caps. But when the anchor and mortars were incorporated into the new memorial, two granite balustrades were added along the roadway near the mortars.
A bronze shield was affixed to the mast by the Havana chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution while it was still in Havana.This shield was retained when the mast was erected in 1915.