Despite being tired after having a long flight from London to NYC, that I almost fell asleep while going from JFK to Manhattan by a cab, the thing that woke me up was the view of Empire State Building’s lights. Few sights on its illumination, on a clear New York night and I knew that my stay on Manhattan will be a striking experience. It was the first thing to take my breath away in this city filled with other iconic landmarks.
My first sight on the Empire State Building:
Empire State Building is one of America’s most prominent tourist attraction. Being one of the most iconic landmark of NYC, it is second the tallest building of the city and currently 9th tallest building in the world. It has appeared in over 90 movies and is the most remarkable piece of the NYC Skyline, which can be greatly admired for example from Brooklyn or Queens. It gathers more than 3.5 millions of visitors every year.
Standing in a very long queue and finally being let in, you don’t really get opportunity to look around. The organization is focused to move crowds forward as quickly as possible. I only noticed that inside the building, there is plenty of marble. The reason why it attracts so many tourists from all around the world is not its interiors but an opportunity to see spectacular views from the top. It is the best place to admire the whole Manhattan and what’s nearby, because the building is situated on 350th Avenue, in the middle of Manhattan. This world famous landmark has open-air 86th floor Observation Deck, which seems to be the most famous observatory in the world. The Observation Deck encircles the building’s spire, giving one-of-a kind views of Central Park, Times Square, The Statue of Liberty, The Brooklyn Bridge, The Hudson River and East River, Chrysler Building as well as other Manhattan’s outstanding skyscrapers. The view is really remarkable, compared with nothing else I’ve seen before. There is no words to describe the sights and feelings you experience standing there, looking at the illuminations of the city, which never falls asleep. It is illuminated almost every evening, and the colors may differ as they have symbolic meaning. Sometimes, the lights may be combined with various colors to commemorate special events, like the colors of national flags. For many people, it creates a unique, romantic scenery, so you shouldn’t be surprised having next to you a guy proposing to his future wife.
The views from the observatory:
The construction of the building was completed in 1931 and at this time it was the tallest building in the world, beating out the Chrysler Building. In 1973 it lost its title as world’s tallest building, which was given to New York’s North Tower of the World Trade Center. The grand opening of the building was on May 1 in 1931 with a traditional ribbon cut. At the same time President Herbert Hoover pressed a button from the White House, what turned on the building’s lights. This Art Deco style building, designed by Shreve, Lamb & Harmon Associates, made of steel and stone, comprises of 102 stories with overall height of 449 metres. The entire building was built up in just over a one year and well ahead of schedule. During its construction, there were employed 3,400 workers on any single day, many of whom received a very good pay rate. The new building evoked in New Yorker’s a deep pride, which was obviously needed in the times of the Great Depression, when many city residents were laid off.
One dramatic and astonishing anecdote connected with the building relates to the woman, who in the beginning of December 1979 visited the Empire State Building with the intention of committing a suicide. She leapt from the 86 story observatory, but luckily fell about only some feet, when a strong gust of wind occurred and forced her onto 2.5 foot ledge on the 85th floor, where a security guard pulled her in through a window. It saved her life, having only a fractured hip.
Apart from spectacular views from the observatory, while being in New York, it is a good idea to admire the building’s grandness from some distance. To me, there is no better place in NYC to have it seen in all its glory than from the Rockeffeler Center. Standing at the top roof of the Rockefeller Centre, which is opposite to the Empire State Building, you may have the impression that the Empire State Building is an architectural wonder, which is the ‘king’ of whole Manhattan.