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A new bird's eye view of New York

Topic U.S. Travel

A new bird's eye view of New York - Image

Chances are good that pretty much every New Yorker you speak to is going to have a favourite spot in the Big Apple, and many are going to be centred around pristine views of the city. Consider for a moment the number of skyscrapers present - there are so many great places for travellers and locals alike to get an eyeful of the bustling metropolis.

However, there's one new view not many people have seen just yet, and it comes with some emotional baggage. The new One World Observatory, part of One World Trade Center, which is located where the Twin Towers once stood, opens May 29.

This will present a unique way to see the city below and honour the events that occurred within the complex on Sept. 11, 2001.

A new view
This will technically be a new vantage point no one has ever had before, because the building itself is taller than the towers that once stood there. USA Today reported that One World Trade Center stands at 1,776 feet tall, which was chosen because it's the year that the United States declared independence from the United Kingdom.

Travellers can see out from floors 100, 101 or 102 and be treated to a panoramic view. They can also enter the "sky portal," The New York Times detailed, which is a floor essentially made of high-definition video screen that shows the street below. It's a live feed from cameras stationed at the base of the building, so it appears that the viewer is standing not far above the street.

However, one significant difference is that travellers won't be able to go to an outdoor, open-air observation deck like they could on the South Tower, the newspaper explained.

Voices of the past

According to USA Today, those who explore the observatory will also be able to learn more about the attacks that happened more than a decade ago. The source detailed that after guests walk into the observatory, they immediately enter a room called "Voices," which teaches them about the construction of the building and the event that changed the U.S.

For instance, the news outlet pointed to one of the testimonials of a construction worker, Jorge Fernandez, who explained in a video recording that he was there when the towers fell and was also involved in the new construction, coming full circle.

Visitors will also be privy to other history lessons, such as the time-lapse display of the history of New York that will be featured in the 15-person elevators up to the observation deck.

Expert opinions offered
Another benefit of heading to the One World Observatory is that there will be two manned concierge stations where guests can go for advice on what to do in New York City.

They won't necessarily be speaking to humans though, explained USA Today. While there are 20 "ambassadors" to help people use the technology, those on the 100th floor deck will use high-definition monitors to interact with recommendations for where to eat, see the popular sights and generally have a good time in the Big Apple.

That is, if they don't want to eat at the observatory. The New York Times reported that there will be a 60-seat steakhouse, as well as a cafe and bar, for those who want refreshments while enjoying the view.

The newspaper also noted that individuals can rent tablets for $15 US each to heighten the experience and show people what lies in the direction they're facing.