Summit One Vanderbilt reveals 1,000-foot-high mirrored art experience

Posted On Tue, September 14, 2021 By

Posted On Tue, September 14, 2021 By In Architecture, Art, Events, Midtown East, Top Stories

All photos courtesy of SUMMIT One Vanderbilt

Tickets officially go on sale today for Summit One Vanderbilt, the Midtown East tower’s 1,000+ foot observation deck. Previously, we got a look at the two skyboxes that allow guests to stand on completely transparent glass 1,063 feet above Madison Avenue, and now developer SL Green has revealed even more of the sky-high attractions, including an all-glass outdoor elevator (yes, even the floor!) that travels up the side of the building to over 1,200 feet. But perhaps most mesmerizing is an art installation called Air created by Kenzo Digital. Covered on three sides, along with the floor and ceiling, in mirrors, the multisensory experience challenges one’s perception of space and immerses the guest within the fabric of the skyline. 

One Vanderbilt officially opened to office tenants last September; the 77-story, 1,401-foot-tall office tower next to Grand Central was designed by Kohn Pedersen Fox and is NYC’s fourth-tallest tower.

SUMMIT One Vanderbilt is a 65,000-square-foot, four-level entertainment space on the 91st, 92nd, and 93rd floors. It is the fourth-highest observatory in the city behind those at One World Trade Center (1,250 feet), Edge at 30 Hudson Yards (1,100 feet), and the Empire State Building (1,050 feet).

“SUMMIT One Vanderbilt is an immersive and sensory space embracing the cityscape of New York. Between integrated art, sound and lighting, and the observatory’s expansive views, our approach to interior design allows visitors to understand their place in the larger city,” said Anne-Rachel Schiffman, Director of Snøhetta.

The biggest news today is the reveal of Air, designed by Kenzo Digital and described as a “euphoric, multisensory experience.” The walk-through art experience is comprised of several “chapters,” beginning with a walk down a darkened tunnel that then leads you into a light-infused elevator ride rising over 1,000 feet in just 42 seconds.

From there, enter the incredible two-level mirrored room on the 91st and 92nd floors. Known as Transcendence, it completely alters one’s sense of space (in a good way!), themselves, and the outside world. According to a press release, “Mixing transparency and reflectivity, Air creates the illusion of boundless space, faceting the world into infinite universe without fixed form or limit.”

Kenzo Digital, Artist and CEO of Kenzo Digital Immersive, explained his piece in a statement:

In addition to its remarkable materiality, Air is a living, breathing entity, expressed through its multisensory use of sound, lighting and production design. It’s a story that evolves with each successive space, bringing visitors deeper and deeper into the experience until finally, they become part of it. Though Air is deeply personal, the experience reveals a shared consciousness, inviting visitors of any age to revel in collective wonder. Through its boundless juxtapositions of form, Air compels you to live in the present moment: calm, aware and free.

There are two other components of Air that have yet to be revealed.

After exiting Air, guests have a chance to experience Levitation, two all-glass skyboxes that jut out of the building and suspend guests 1,063 feet above Madison Avenue.

If all that wasn’t enough of a sky-high thrill, Ascent is an all-glass elevator with a transparent floor that takes guests from the terrace level up the side of the building to over 1,200 feet, pausing at the highest viewing point in midtown Manhattan.

Ascent is accessed via the open-air SUMMIT Terrace, which wraps around the south and west sides of One Vanderbilt and provides views for up to 60 miles. If you’re looking to unwind, there will be a bar on the terrace from the adjacent Nordic-themed cafe Apres. Designed by Snøhetta, Apres offers light fare and an innovative cocktail program curated by Danny Meyer’s Union Square Events.

SUMMIT One Vanderbilt opens on October 21. To start, it will be open Thursday through Sunday. Tickets start at $39 for adults. Special pricing for New York City residents is also available online only. Reserve your spot here >>

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All photos courtesy of SUMMIT One Vanderbilt

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Neighborhoods : Midtown East

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