Your View of New York City From the Empire State Building Just Got Better
One of the best views in New York City is finally coming back.
After more than four years of renovations, the Empire State Building — well known for its colorful nighttime light displays and incredible views of the city — is welcoming visitors to its 102nd floor observatory on Saturday, Oct. 12.
After its $160-million revamp, the observatory now includes a 360-degree view of the city from over 1,250 feet in the air, according to USA Today, and will have floor-to-ceiling windows for an unobstructed panorama.
The 102nd floor is about as high as you can get to the top of the building, which is 103 floors.
“What we really wanted to do was to connect with people … give them something magical. So 102 is the absolute pinnacle of that magic,” CEO Anthony Malkin, whose grandfather built the original skyscraper back in 1931, told CBS News.
In addition to the major makeover at the top, the second floor of the building has been transformed into an interactive museum, which opened to the public in July. There, visitors can learn about the history of the building and get a glimpse of it through the decades. There is even a walk-through tribute to the building’s role in pop culture, including in movies like "King Kong," "An Affair to Remember," and "Elf," USA Today also noted.
The open-air observation deck on the 86th floor, of course, is still there for visitors to enjoy, but that extra 16 stories can make a bigger difference than you might think when you’re looking to see the best of the city.
Malkin also told CNN the new renovations are “a reflection of what it means, to 13 cultures in nine languages around the world, to be at the Empire State Building. People share the same words – iconic, authentic, historic, dreams, inspiration.”
It costs $58 to get to the 102nd floor observatory, according to the famed tourist attraction's website. It’s a pretty steep price, but it’s also your chance to see one of the best views in the city. The cost to get to the 86th floor observatory is $38.
Renovations are still going on inside the building with the final phase being a new exhibition space on the 80th floor, which is due to open by the end of November.