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ROOM AT THE TOP: Empire State Building Observatory Reopens With Clear Views

Empire State Building Observatory
Empire State Building Observatory Photo Credit: Empire State Realty Trust (ESRT)

If you ever wanted to catch unobstructed views from the observatory at the Empire State Building, you can start this Monday. Thank social distancing.

There will be no out-of-towners hogging the sightlines for what will be a limited number attendees at a time when the observatory opens at the “World's Most Famous Building.”

Reservations will be online-only and scheduled for specific time periods.

Only 500 guests at a time will be allowed in the 70,000-square-foot space – barely a fifth of the usual amount and well below New York State's Phase 4 capacity guideline of 25%. That allows for the separation of groups by more than 18 feet.

You’ll have to pass a contactless temperature check (must be less than 100.4 degrees) and wear a facemask throughout the visit.

And those interactive exhibits that run on automatic and binocular viewers will be closed, for obvious reasons.

All hosts and cleaning and security personnel have been trained in additional customer service, use of PPE, new cleaning procedures, tracing and back-of-house protocols, says Empire State Realty Trust, which owns, manages, operates, acquires and repositions office and retail properties that include the 102-story Art Deco icon.

Air filters and purifiers also will be part of constant ventilation of fresh air in and exhaust out.

For the first time, you’ll be able to enter through a separate entrance, which was part of a $165 million redevelopment project that was concluded last December.

The only real catch: Hours of operation will be from 8 to 11 a.m. -- at least for the first few weeks.

“The reduced capacity and lack of tourists from out of town will create a unique ‘New York for New Yorkers’ experience,” said Anthony E. Malkin, the chairman, president and CEO of Empire State Realty Trust.

“As a beacon of hope and symbol of strength throughout the pandemic, the reopening of the iconic landmark is sure to be a special day for New York,” Malkin added.

INFO / TICKETS / NEW HOURS: http://www.esbnyc.com 

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