A Reimagined Guest Experience
Since its construction, the Empire State Building has taken pride in its status as the World’s Most Famous Building – an international symbol of technology, imagination, and ambition. Recent renovations and a reimagined visitor experience serve as an example for other buildings and attractions across the globe.
Reimagination of The Observatory Experience: A five-year, $165 million overhaul of the visitor journey to the 86th Floor Observatory was completed in 2019 and introduced a new dedicated guest entrance on 34th Street, an immersive 10,000 square foot museum, and additional exhibits on the redesigned 80th Floor. A brand-new 102nd Floor Observatory with floor-to-ceiling windows complete the redo. ESB also improved indoor air quality throughout the building and specifically throughout the Observatory Experience with industry-leading MERV 13 filters and AtmosAir bi-polar ionization. The building lives within the larger Empire State Realty Trust real estate portfolio, which was the first in the Americas to achieve the evidence-based, third-party verified WELL Health-Safety Rating for overall health and safety.
Sustainability Retrofit: Over the last 10 years, the Empire State Building underwent a ground-breaking energy and efficiency retrofit as part of the $550 million Empire State ReBuilding program that transformed it into one of today’s most efficient historic landmarks. The building is in the top 20 percent of all Class A commercial assets in the nation and has been recognized by more than ten independent organizations for its sustainability leadership. As a result of these efforts, ESRT earned the highest possible GRESB 5 Star Rating and Green Star recognition for sustainability performance in real estate and was named a Fitwel Champion for healthy, high-performance buildings. ESB looks forward to a more sustainable future with a recently announced target to reach carbon neutrality by 2030.
Updated Tower Lights: In 2012, the Empire State Building upgraded its world-famous tower lights to now display more than 16 million colors. The new lights debuted with the building’s first music-to-light show set to Alicia Keys’ Girl on Fire and Empire State of Mind. The building recently brought back the classic show during 2020 to bring a moment of joy to all New Yorkers during the pandemic.
Restoration of an Art Deco Classic: In 2009, the celestial ceiling mural of the Empire State Building’s Fifth Avenue Lobby was fully restored. The project used aluminum leaf and 23-karat gold, the same materials from 1931, and took more than 20,000 man hours. Just last year, the silhouette of the Empire State Building was also restored to the original design that influenced various architectural styles. With the removal of various antennas and a new coat of silver waterproof paint, ESB sparkles like new.
“Over the past 90 years, the Empire State Building has been the undisputed landmark of the New York City skyline, with its iconic tower lights that shine as a symbol of hope, strength and perseverance,” said Mr. Malkin. “We will continue to innovate and push boundaries in technology, sustainability and tourism to ensure that the Empire State Building remains America’s Favorite Building for the next 90 years as well.”