A Furturistic Experience at One World Observatory

The One World Observatory at the One World Trade Center opened at the end of May, and it’s a breathtaking experience for tourists and yes, even seasoned New Yorkers.

After the tragedy of 9/11, experiencing the views and impressive new building is in many ways cathartic. Jonathan Weinberg told NY Daily News that for him, the visit “was coming home. I was in (World Trade Center) tower two when it happened. It was important for me to bring my family. It was inspiring to come back and see that one of the towers come back once again.”

The Sky Portal

Ticket prices are a bit pricey, with an adult ticket costing $32, seniors $30, and children $26. This is competitive with other observatory ticket prices however, since Top of the Rock will put you out $30 for an adult ticket and the Empire State Building $32.

Generously, the OWO is offering complimentary tickets to family members who lost loved ones in 9/11, as well as first responders and recovery workers.

The OWO is making great efforts to make an almost futuristic experience — but that’s why we love it. The Sky Pod elevators shoot you up to the floor 100, 102, and 103 in less than a few minutes. Visitors can check out the panoramic views out the windows, but the digital renderings of the city are just as compelling.

The “City Pulse” video is a digital skyline that can call up details and stories at a wave of the hand. It is a constructed out of a bunch of TV screens forming an upright ring — so that has major cool tech points. The Sky Portal is a disc that visitors can walk on that projects the city street from below in HD (not for those of us with vertigo!).

The City Pulse

The City Pulse

But for all the futuristic flourishes, OWO does make an effort to connect people-to-people. In the welcome center, visitors can experience a video sequenced called “Voices” that shares the personal stories of the people who constructed OWO. This adds depth and a human element to a building that otherwise feels like a Jetson’s theme park (in a good way!).

There are three restaurants in OWO; One Cafe, One Mix, and One Dine. At One Mix, there are borough themed plates, sure to amuse (or devolve into endless debate) native New Yorkers: Pastrami reuben bites (Manhattan), Astoria shish kebabs (Queens), knish (Brooklyn), empanadas (The Bronx), and meatball sliders (Staten Island). NY Eater compared the bar to an airport bar, so maybe skip the cocktails and just drink in the view.

You don’t have to go rushing over to OWO now, or even next week, or the week after…but it is an unique experience that shouldn’t be missed.

The Observation Deck