Head to the 86th floor observation deck between 9pm and 1am Thursday to Saturday for some live saxophone to accompany the view
The Empire State Building is an American cultural icon. With its distinctive Art Deco style, it has been labeled one of the Seven Wonders of the Modern World by the American Society of Civil Engineers. And they weren’t simply biased: it truly is an extraordinary building.
It was built in just 410 days, using seven million hours of labour during the Great Depression. The building officially opened in 1931 in dramatic fashion, when President Herbert Hoover switched on the building’s lights with the push of a button from Washington, D.C. Coming in at 443m high with its antenna, it stood as the world’s tallest building for nearly 40 years.
Now you can enjoy the view from rather safer environments on the 86th and 102nd floors. Sunset in particular is spectacular, as the natural light fades and the infinite squares of artificial light flicker on in the skyscrapers of the city that never sleeps.
The Most Beautiful Suicide
The observation decks have seen their share of tragedy too. Most famously, on May 1st, 1947, Evelyn McHale jumped to her death from the 86th floor observation deck, landing on a parked limousine. Photography student Robert Wiles took a photo of McHale’s body, which lies strangely serene, the rumpled hood of the car like slept-in bed sheets. Often referred to as “The Most Beautiful Suicide”, the image was later used by Andy Warhol.
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