There are many activities in New York. If you are looking for the best viewpoints, you may already know the Empire State Building, Top of the Rock or One World Observatory. 2 observation platforms were created more recently, Edge in New York City since 2020 and the latest, inaugurated in September 2021, the Summit One Vanderbilt, commonly called Summit.

The latter is not only an observatory, its originality is to offer attractions within each of the different rooms. Where to find the Summit? What are its strong points? The point on the different experiences during your visit.

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Where is Summit SUMMIT One Vanderbilt located?

To experience this new attraction, head to the corner of 42nd Street and Vanderbilt Avenue. Access to the observatory is through Grand Central Terminal, through the wooden doors next to the One Vanderbuilt building. Walk down the ramp and follow the signs to the Observation Desk. Alternatively, you can enter at 45 East 42nd Street, between Vanderbilt and Madison Avenues, next to Grand Central Terminal (you can get there from the Grand Central subway station).

Don’t miss the exhibit on the history of the Summit’s design in the main lobby of Grand Central. The observatory is located at the top of the Vanderbilt Tower at 335 meters and has 3 floors with various immersive and entertaining animations. It is one of the tallest buildings in New York.

SUMMIT One Vanderbilt view

What are the highlights of SUMMIT One Vanderbilt?

The Summit offers a unique immersive cultural experience in New York City. Artist Kenzo Digital has designed a multi-sensory art space, called “Air,” designed to awaken your senses to another perception of space and the urban environment of New York City.

Located on the tallest building in New York, 427 meters with its spire, in the center of Midtown Manhattan and overlooking the Grand Central Terminal, the Summit offers a surface of 6000 m² on three levels. With breathtaking views, fun and exciting experiences, The Summit combines technology and entertainment to provide you with an unforgettable experience.

Summit Air: art and technology for a breathtaking view of New York

The adventure begins with a scan of your face for the upcoming “Air Unity” experience. The mirror-covered elevator then propels you to the 91st floor in seconds. The Summit Air space welcomes you with its futuristic rooms designed by Kenzo Digital. This huge two-story space consists of glass rooms covered with mirrors from floor to ceiling.

This is the “Transcendence 1” space, a space created to transcend the everyday, the first stage of the attractions. Everything merges: the floor, the reflections… Discover this space without structure to connect you to the space. Take endless pictures with the reflections of the buildings in the mirrors: the experience is really unusual.

The Manhattan skyline is reflected in front of you. The view of the Chrysler Building, the Empire State Building or Bryant Park is breathtaking. Since the Summit is located in the center of Midtown, the view is completely unobstructed. For a quieter approach, check out the art installation “Clouds” on the floor of a smaller room, created by artist Yayoi Kusama.

An interactive and fun experience: Affinity

Summit is not a simple observation platform, and that’s what makes it different from other observatories. The adventure becomes fun with the “Affinity” room. You enter a space of silver balloons filled with helium floating in the air. The reflection of the New York sky and buildings is even more intense. You will not fail to want to touch the balloons and play with your children. From this space, you will have a breathtaking view of Central Park and Uptown Manhattan.

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Levitation as seen by SUMMIT One Vanderbilt

The experience continues on the 92nd floor with “Transcendence 2.” Treat yourself to a new perspective, walking along the platform while viewing Transcendence 1 from above, all surrounded by mirrors. If you’re not afraid of heights, try the Summit Levitation experience. Step onto two glass ledges, each 2.5 meters deep, suspended 325 meters above the bustle of Madison Square. It is the largest glass structure in New York City.

Feel the excitement of towering over the city. Finally, enjoy a personalized digital experience on the multimedia screen with Air Unity: you’ll see your face floating in the clouds. Put yourself in the picture. Spend as much time as possible on these two floors, because once you go up to the next floors, you won’t be able to come back down.

activities at SUMMIT One Vanderbilt

The outdoor terrace for a relaxing break at SUMMIT One Vanderbilt

After enjoying Summit’s various attractions, head up to the 93rd floor for a drink or a bite to eat. The “Après” bar/café welcomes you to its Nordic-style indoor space or to the outdoor terrace. From there, you’ll have another view of New York City below, and hear all the sounds of the city.

Glass elevators: the Ascent experience

“Ascent is an additional experience offered by Summit. It gives you an even higher view of New York City. Two elevators outside the building, with glass windows and a glass floor, propel you in 42 seconds to the highest point of the One Vanderbit building, at 8,000 feet. Take advantage of this moment to admire the breathtaking views of the Empire State Building and Times Square.

When to visit SUMMIT One Vanderbilt?

Summit One Vanderbilt can be visited daily between 9 a.m. and 10:30 p.m., except for Tuesdays, which are closed days. Both daytime and nighttime tours have their own advantages. Because Summit One Vanderbilt is still new, visitors are numerous, especially at sunset. A daytime visit allows for a more relaxed, less noisy approach to all the attractions, especially if you are with your family.

SUMMIT One Vanderbilt by night

The view of the Manhattan skyline is better and allows you to enjoy the different monuments and the park in peace. The daytime lighting is ideal for successful photos. At night, the experience is different. The colors become more intense, in harmony with the LED light and sound show.

The succession of colors electrifies, the music is lively: Summit becomes a space of light seen throughout New York. It’s another way to enjoy the visit of the observation deck and the breathtaking view of the landscape. It’s ideal to have both experiences, day and night.

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Bottom line

Summit One Vanderbilt is unlike any other observation deck in New York City. In addition to the breathtaking views, it offers spectacular attractions for families, both sensory and fun. Don’t miss this must-see during your stay in New York.

5/5 - (3 votes)