A heart-pounding experience in the sky is coming to midtown this fall and it's unlike any other experience atop a skyscraper.
Summit One Vanderbilt sits atop the new 67-floor One Vanderbilt super-tall—a 1,401-foot-high—skyscraper. As the city's fourth-tallest building after One World Trade Center, Central Park Tower and 111 West 57th Street, it sits just west of Grand Central Terminal, where you first enter the experience underground.
After a trip through a mirrored hallway with its own immersive elements, visitors take an elevator up to the 91st floor, where they're 1,000 feet over the streets and sidewalks of NYC. Kenzo Digital has created a totally mirrored infinity room called "Air" that reflects the sky and city views over and over, making you feel like you're walking in the sky or on another plane of existence. Looking above you and below you in this two-story space, you see your reflection repeating forever.
Photograph: Summit One Vanderbilt
One of the coolest parts of the experience, besides the absolutely breathtaking view of the city (where you can see all the major landmarks and bridges), is that it changes with the weather and time of day. When the weather is nice, it'll look like you're walking among the clouds. When it's stormy, you'll see the rain fly sideways and around the building. The sun in the morning will cast a different light than the sun in the evening.
Kenzo Digital told us that the room, which you can see from various points and heights across the two floors, highlights the "fluidity of nature."
"Every time you come, it is radically different," he said, describing the space as a "massive cathedral."
After you ascend to the third level of this experience, guests are introduced to "Levitation," a series of transparent glass sky-boxes that jut out of the building at 1,063 feet above Madison Avenue. Here, you can stand over the street with just glass between you and the ground. It's certainly not for the faint of heart.
Up and around the building one more time and guests are whisked up into one of two all-glass elevators called "Ascent" that travels up the outside of the building to 1,210 feet (and 120 feet off the observation deck, which is taller than Edge at Hudson Yards). Our knees buckled on this experience, so beware!
To make Summit One Vanderbilt an entire experience, it also features Summit, an all-day après-style cafe and bar by Danny Meyer’s Union Square Events, which has an outdoor terrace bar, and an art gallery where Japanese artist and icon Yayoi Kusama will have an exhibit called "Clouds."
"We have created a destination that offers an interactive experience that will be remembered for a lifetime with the best, amplified views in all of New York City. Summit One Vanderbilt is awe-inspiring, magical and needs to be experienced to be understood," said Marc Holliday, the chairman and CEO of SL Green. "It is a special, thrilling place that New Yorkers and travelers from across the country and the world will want to visit time and time again."
Summit One Vanderbilt opens to the public on Oct 21. Timed and limited ticketing will be done via summitov.com.