The Empire State Building Observatory Redevelopment Completed

New 80(th) floor Completes Four-Year, $165 Million Redevelopment Project

NEW YORK, Nov. 26, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- The Empire State Building Observatory (ESBO) atop The World's Most Famous Building today announces the completion of the redevelopment of its 80(th) floor. The final component of the four-year, $165 million project to reimagine the ESBO adds engaging and informative exhibits to orient visitors on their visit to New York City and showcases the building's unique place at the center of it all.

New on the 80(th) floor is an exclusive, interactive partnership with NYC & Company, the official marketing, tourism and partnership bureau for New York City, with five interactive video blades which allow visitors to utilize NYC & Company's expertise to design itineraries for their visit using a massive inventory of destinations in all five boroughs. The itineraries automatically download to a visitor's phone with the use of a QR Code reader or can be sent via e-mail. Designed in response to research that showed ESBO is many visitors' first destination, this service is a boon to all tourists and New York City residents.

Interactive, augmented reality scenes from New York City, housed inside classic binoculars, bring visitors directly to the sights and sounds of popular destinations. Other exhibits include videos of ESB's famous light shows with interviews with Marc Brickman, the lighting artist who brings them to life, user-generated content, and famous British memory artist Steven Wiltshire's monumental skyline of New York City.

To celebrate the unveiling, the Empire State Building is also excited to announce the premiere of a new video starring Tony, Grammy, Emmy, and Pulitzer-Prize winning composer, lyricist, and actor Lin-Manuel Miranda. Set to his love-letter to New York, Cheering for Me Now - an original track from his Hamildrop series with music by legendary composer John Kander (Cabaret, Chicago) and lyrics by Miranda, the video will feature a new music-to-light show designed by world-renowned lighting artist Marc Brickman and footage of Miranda exploring the all-new Observatory Experience. A portion of the video will premiere on November 27, on CBS This Morning's live broadcast and will be posted exclusively on the Empire State Building's YouTube Channel and Facebook page. Fans in New York can also watch the music-to-light show live on the building that night at 8 p.m. while listening to the song on iHeartRadio's Broadway channel via

80(th) Floor Exhibits Include:

-- NYC: Above and Beyond: This exhibit, created in partnership with NYC &
Company, encourages visitors to create a personalized trip itinerary
from the top of the Empire State Building - often their first stop in
New York City. After answering questions about their interests and the
length of their stay, they can assemble a personalized list of
recommendations for attractions and sites throughout Manhattan,
Brooklyn, Queens, the Bronx, and Staten Island. Guests can then obtain
their customized itinerary via e-mail or scanned by QR code directly to
the visitors' handheld devices for future reference.
-- Artistry in Light: Ever wonder how the Empire State Building's
music-to-light shows are created? The Artistry in Light exhibit features
a short film narrated by world-renowned lighting designer Marc Brickman,
a master of light creation. The film features highlights from his
designs, such as the first-ever music-to-light show with Alicia Keys in
2012, and a holiday light show synced to Mariah Carey's "All I Want For
Christmas Is You."
-- Stephen Wiltshire's Drawing: In 2017, famed British artist Stephen
Wiltshire took a 45-minute helicopter ride above Manhattan. He then drew
an incredibly detailed landscape drawing of New York City, while in
residence on the 80(th) floor of the Empire State Building, completely
from memory. A three-minute film documents his process, from the
45-minute helicopter ride to the four days in which he created the
original piece of art.
-- Scenes of NYC: Through Empire State Building's classic viewfinders,
visitors can check out panoramic views of nine different famed New York
locations from the 80(th) floor. From Times Square to Coney Island,
visitors get an up-close look (and even a glance inside) at places they
can spot from the building's 86(th) and 102(nd) floor observation decks.
-- Showtime Pictures: Excited to see the photos taken in front of the green
screen on the 2(nd) floor? The pictures are captured from 25 different
angles utilizing 25 different HD cameras to create an immersive
experience to tell a visual narrative. The new location for pick up has
been redesigned with facial recognition technology, to speed the
retrieval and purchase process through self-service kiosks.
-- Share Your Experience: As visitors enter the exit queue, they are
encouraged to share their pictures on their social media platforms by
four screens that create mosaic shadows of each visitor with images
shared by other guests that use the hashtag #empirestatebuilding.

"What began with the new Observatory entrance opening in August 2018 is now as we intended - a fully educational and immersive journey which connects visitors from around the world to their emotional connections to the World's Most Famous Building and helps them design their entire visit to New York City from the center of it all. The completed Empire State Building Observatory elevates our Guests' experience, from our new entrance to the dramatic and exciting new 102(nd) floor," said Anthony E. Malkin, Chairman and CEO of Empire State Realty Trust. "At 88 years young, the Empire State Building remains the icon of innovation, aspirations, and dreams, and is the vibrant ancestor of all tall buildings around the world."

Thinc Design led the cross-disciplinary, best-in-class team from the arts and architecture, travel, technology, engineering, and entertainment industries that conceived, curated, designed, and built the project.

The team included:

-- Beneville Studios
-- Corgan
-- Diversified.
-- Intersection
-- JLL
-- Kubik Maltbie
-- NYC & Company
-- Otis Elevator Company
-- Showtime Pictures
-- Skanska
-- Squint / Opera
-- Stephen Wiltshire
-- Syska Hennessy Group
-- Tactman
-- Tenguerian Models
-- The Lighting Practice
-- Thornton Tomasetti

Tickets to the 86(th) Floor Observatory start at $38 with tickets to the 102(nd) Floor Observatory available for an additional $20. Tickets can be pre-purchased online at or in real time on-site at kiosks located on the second and 86(th) floor. Stay connected on social via #ESBReimagined.

About the Empire State Building
Soaring 1,454 feet above Midtown Manhattan (from base to antenna top), the Empire State Building, owned by Empire State Realty Trust, Inc., is the "World's Most Famous Building." With new investments in energy efficiency, infrastructure, public areas and amenities, the Empire State Building has attracted first-rate tenants in a diverse array of industries from around the world. The Empire State Building was named the world's most popular travel destination in a study conducted by Uber and was named America's favorite building in a poll conducted by the American Institute of Architects. For more information on the Empire State Building, please visit,, @EmpireStateBldg,,,, or

About Empire State Realty Trust
Empire State Realty Trust, Inc. , a leading real estate investment trust (REIT), owns, manages, operates, acquires and repositions office and retail properties in Manhattan and the greater New York metropolitan area, including the Empire State Building, the "World's Most Famous Building." Headquartered in New York, New York, the Company's office and retail portfolio covers 10.1 million rentable square feet, as of September 30, 2019, consisting of 9.4 million rentable square feet in 14 office properties, including nine in Manhattan, three in Fairfield County, Connecticut, and two in Westchester County, New York; and approximately 700,000 rentable square feet in the retail portfolio.

CONTACT: Heather Muhleman, 914-299-5533,


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