5 impressive early skyscrapers
1) Chrysler Building
New York’s most adored skyscraper, because of its elegant and sublime Art Deco detailing, inside and out. Famous for its stylized eagles at the corners of its arched crown (even prettier at night). Gargoyles match the medieval ones on Paris’ Notre Dame. Pop into the lobby to admire its luxe mix of marble, and the ceiling mural.
2) Woolworth Building
Our personal favorite because of its ornate façade, a resemblance to many European Gothic cathedrals. The building was commissioned by F.W. Woolworth, owner of the famous five-and-dime chain, and designed by architect Cass Gilbert in 1913. To get inside, sign up for a tour or head to the restaurant, The Wooly Public.
3) Flatiron Building
Named the Flatiron, due to its shape resembling a clothes iron, the wedge-shaped steel-framed building was completed in 1902. Residents were skeptical that the building could remain standing, considering its width of only 6 1⁄2 feet (1,95 meters) at its narrowest point. Adjacent to Madison Square Park.
4) Rockefeller Center
Nineteen Art-Deco-style buildings, whose main building, ‘30 Rock’, houses NBC studios. Walk by in the early morning to witness the scene of Today Show fans vying to get on the air. For views, head to The Observation Deck or the bar in the Rainbow Room. Winter brings the annual Christmas tree and ice skating rink.
5) Williamsburg Savings Bank Tower
Brooklyn’s high point is often referred to as its ‘most phallic building’. The four-sided clock tower was a bank but is now a luxury condo. The ground floor still retains the vaulted bank hall as an event space, and the winter home to the Brooklyn Flea which sells vintage clothing, collectibles, and crafts by local designers.
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