The elevator drops you off at the 67th floor observation deck, most of which is indoors. If you look out the windows on the south side, you can see the steel that makes up the giant letters "GE". However, the real fun is outside. Part of the 67th floor deck is outside, but there are sheets of glass that prevent you from falling off the building; they also somewhat block the view. If you head up to the 69th floor, accessible by escalator, the entire observation deck is outdoors, but there is still glass. The top floor, the 70th floor observation deck (the highest point of the Rock) has no glass and is completely outdoors, making it the most impressive viewpoint in the city of New York. One thing that could improve about the Top of the Rock is that they should install panels that help you name the features you see.
From the Top of the Rock, the view encompasses Newark, Jersey City, 30 Hudson St, the Statue of Liberty, Ellis Island, the Empire State Building, the Verrazano Narrows Bridge, the Williamsburg, Brooklyn, and Manhattan Bridges, the Metropolitan Life Building, the Chrysler Building, the East River, Hells Gate and Triborough Bridges, Central Park, and the George Washington Bridge; You will be able to see three states, Connecticut, New York, and New Jersey.
Sadly, a small part of the view from the 70th floor is blocked, so you can't get a 360-degree panorama.
At the $17.50 a person, Top of the Rock is no budget travel deal, but despite that, it is still very much worth going up. The Top of the Rock is a three-level observation deck on the 67th, 69th, and 70th floor of the Rockefeller Center's GE Building. The design of the observation area is to make it feel like a cruise ship. The observation deck was constructed along with the GE Building in 1933; however, it was closed in 1986, and after 19 years of renovations, the best view in New York City reopened on November 1, 2005.
There is no view of New York quite as jaw-dropping as the view from the Top of the Rock. Although you will only be at 70 stories and 850 feet, and will be a good bit lower than the Empire State Building's 86th floor observatory, I doubt if the views from the ESB can compare with the one from the Top of the Rock. First of all, you can actually see the Empire State Building from the Top of the Rock (as opposed to looking at the GE Building from the top of the ESB). It is also true that the view of the Chrysler Building is somewhat blocked the Metropolitan Life Building, but the view of Central Park is incredible.
Buy tickets for the Top of the Rock (8 AM - midnight) outside the GE Building; then enter opposite Radio City. From there you have to ascend a short staircase to the second floor; there you'll find a museum detailing the Top of the Rock's history, as well as a model of the GE Building. There is also a movie shown. But the real fun starts when you board the glass-ceiling elevator, which lets you see the elevator shaft and whisks you up 66 floors in 45 seconds (not quite up to par with the elevator at Taipei 101, but still quite fast). Then you'll arrive at the observation deck.
Enlargen the second photo for a panoramic view (VT's low resolution photos don't do the place justice.)
The GE (General Electric) Building is the tallest skyscraper at the Rockefeller Center. At an impressive 70 floors and 850 feet tall, the GE Building is the 7th tallest building in New York City. Finished in 1933, the GE Building was originally the RCA building; later RCA was bought by General Electric. Also known as "The Slab," the GE is an Art Deco style building that is very slim from some viewpoints and very wide from others. Many of NBC's studios are located in the GE building, including Saturday Night Live and NBC Nightly News. There is a large shopping concourse underneath the building. The GE building is also famous for the "Lunchtime atop a skyscraper," a photo taken during the construction of the building. It is now possible to go to the top of the GE Building to the Top of the Rock, an observation deck that opened in November 2005.
The Rockefeller Center is an Art Deco office building complex which consists of 19 buildings! It houses very fancy and expensive shops and restaurants that are connected by underground corridors.
In the winter months a highlight is the world's most famous ice skating rink and in summer you can just sit there under the shades and enjoy a cup of coffee or a drink!
If you want to tour the Rockefeller center you can pick up a written, easy-to-follow self guided tour map in the lobby of the GE building.
In 1988, Rockefeller Center was declared a national historic landmark.
This famous New York City landmark of a skating rink is a must-see.
During Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's Eve, the extra lightings, Christmas trees and window decorations add a special aura.
Just great to sip a cup of coffee and watch the world goes by.
Rockefeller Center broke a lot of rules (and ground!) when it was built in the 1930's. The buildings were simple and elegant - powerful but not overwhelming. Still, there is art everywhere to be found - art deco. Don't miss the art deco murals, sculptures and other goodies on doorways, building sides and passageways.
I have always wanted to go ice skating under the christmas tree in rockefeller center, so my marcus took me there, and i was so excited.. untill i saw the line of course... it was out to the street. We waited for about an hour and a half, thank god we brought out own skates ! Once we got on the rink, we couldnt even skate, the rink should only have about 40-50 people on it (its rather small) and there must have been 100-150 people , and wouldnt you know, they were all stopping to take pictures ?! well, if you cant beat 'em, join em i say. so, i took pic's too. I wasnt about to break my neck TRYING to skate. I think we stayed for 30 minutes, and got to skate around the rink twice.
The most beautiful church is New York. Located about a block from the ice skating rink with the huge christmas tree. It will be extremely crowded inside, so maybe you should go in the morning, or visit not around christmas. If your going to take a picture, make sure there is no flash, and the security guards dont see you. They are mean, and they will yell at you, and at worse, kick you out of church. I wonder what God must think. Anywho. Be smart, and curtious. ALSO - remember to take off your hat in god's house, this can get you kicked out as well. ENJOY !
For my Christmas present last year, my boyfriend suprised with my tickets to go see the rockettes at radio city music hall. it was fantastic! i loved every moment of it. just when you thought it wouldnt get any better it did. the live orchestra was outstanding! and the dancers were amazing! it was aimed more towards little kids, but heck, when christmas time comes around, we all turn in to little kids! a deff. treat for the kids !
I love going to see the tree during christmas time in Rockefeller Center. It really gets you in the holiday spirit. Its nice because every year, it is a brand new tree. They are actually donated by someone each year. It exciting to see how big it will be, year after year.
During winter months the lower plaza is used for ice skating. In warm weather it is an outdoor restaurant/cafe. In the walkway between the Skating Rink and Fifth Avenue there is a cascading water fountain that always has beautiful flower arrangements, according to the seasons.
Up above on street level the Today Show is taped.
After the WTC and Empire State Building we wanted to see the view from the Top of the Rock. It was around eleven o'clock when we arrived at the Top of the Rock. It was very quiet at that time. No waiting lines for tickets. We even didn't have to wait at the elevator. In about ten minutes we were at top of Rockefeller Center.
The first elevator brings you to an exhibition of the history of Rockefeller Center. There’s a timeline with pictures. There is also a girder to walk over. You can look down and see what the workers saw when they built it. There is perplex floor on either side.
The second elevator brings you to the observation deck. These elevators have a see-through glass roof; it’s an attraction itself. When the elevator is in motion the elevator shaft lights up. It’s fantastic to see. So heads up in the elevator!
First you come at a lower observation deck that’s surrounded by panels of non-reflective safety glass. The view is amazing; especially the view of Central Park. This is something you won’t see when you’re at top of the Empire State Building. You can’t get enough of the view. Wherever you look it’s just beautiful! The second and higher level has no safety glass. The view is getting better and better. I just can’t get enough of the views; it is breathtaking! I highly recommend a visit to Top of the Rock. You won’t be sorry!
For $2 you can buy a brochure which tells you which buildings you are seeing when you’re at the top.
We didn’t buy our tickets through the internet. If you have tickets in front you must go on the date you selected, whether the weather is good or not. So I prefer to buy my tickets minutes before visiting the Top of the Rock.
We've been on all three observation decks; World Trade Centre, Empire State Building and Top of the Rock. Every building has its unique views. The one I like the most is Top of the Rock, because you have great views of Central Park. Experience it yourself!
8:00 a.m. to midnight
365 days a year
The last elevator is going up at 11 p.m.
One hundred times the experience of the unbelievably disappointing Empire State Building.
Firstly a PROPER pre-bookable online ticket system that actually works and isnt just an excuse to get money off you earlier. It enables you to choose precisely the time and date of your visit, so hopefully no queuing when you arrive. Couldnt really put this to the test though as we went at 8.45am on a Sunday and there was a sum total of about six other visitors.
Well thought out museum / information station at the entrance detailing the history and construction that went into The Rockefeller Center, including a virtual reality simulation of what working at the top of a skyscraper looks like, and the obligatory 5min film show (that mostly repeats what youve just seen / read).
The automatic elevator up has a glass roof and the 70 storey shaft has been lined with neon tubes for a Buck Rogers experience.
Once at the top, the 8ft reinforced glass sheets that stop you falling off the edge give a near perfect 360 degree view of Manhattan. So, unlike the ESB, you dont have to squeeze your camera through railings to get a good shot.
With views of Central Park (and obviously The ESB itself) there really is no contest between Top Of The Rock and The Empire State Building - unfortunately the ESB can rely solely on its celebrity status, rather than the experience, to pull in the crowds...
NBC television maintains studios throughout the complex. Saturday Night Live & Late Night with Conan O'Brien originate in the GE Building. NBC's Today show is broadcast live on weekdays from 7 to 10am from the glass-enclosed studio on the southwest corner of 49th Street & Rockefeller Plaza.
The 70 minutes NBC Studio Tour took me behind the scenes at the Peacock network. The tour include the Today show, NBC Nightly News, Dateline NBC, Saturday Night Live sets.
Tours run every 15 minutes Monday through Saturday from 8:30am to 5:30pm, Sunday from 9:30am to 4:30pm. Buy the ticket right up to tour time at the NBC Experience store, on Rockefeller Plaza at 49th Street. Tickets cost $17.50 for adults.
For a dramatic approach to the entire complex, start at Fifth Avenue between 49th & 50th streets, through the Promenade, known as the Channel Gardens. You will find a number of attractive shops along here. The Promenade leads to the Lower Plaza, home to the famous ice-skating rink in winter. The Rink at Rockefeller Center is tiny but positively romantic, especially during the holidays, when the giant Christmas tree's multicolored lights twinkle from above. During warmer months, we can have an alfresco dining in the shadow of Paul Manship's gilded bronze statue Prometheus. All around, the flags of the United Nations' member countries flap in the breeze.