The Edge NY and the Vessel have made the Hudson Yards a must-see destination when visiting New York City.
The Edge NY is the latest addition to the ever increasing range of high altitude viewing decks and rooftop bars in New York City. Part of the recently opened Hudson Yards, home of the other new NYC landmark, The Vessel, taking the elevator 102 floors to The Edge NY will give you expansive 360 degree views of the city that never sleeps – and for an extra fee, you can catch one of New York’s incredible sunsets too!
Towering over the former railway terminus and tracks, at a heady 1,131 feet, the Edge juts out in a triangle shape from the 100th floor. An additional two floors accommodate the bar and general viewing windows. For those feeling a little brave, you can walk out onto a glass section and see the streets – and even a military drone – over a thousand feet below.
Is The Edge the best observation platform in NYC?
Well, that’s a tough question. They all have their benefits, but did you know the one we least recommend is the Empire State Building? That’s because it’s one of the parts of the city you want in your photographs and when you’re at the top, you can see pretty much everything else but the ESB. The building is also one of the most expensive tourist experiences in the city.
While the fairly new One World Observatory offers the best view of the New York Harbor, Jersey City, and the Statue of Liberty, it’s too far downtown for Central Park views. Our favorite is the Top of the Rock for its unspoiled views of Central Park and the Empire State and Chrysler buildings. What The Edge NY offers is an epic view of Midtown, New Jersey, the Hudson, and down to the World Trade Center.
The Edge chose the worst moment to open – EVER
The Edge NY opened with the worst possible timing – on March 11, 2020 – a week before the city went into lockdown. Unable to benefit from the pre-opening hype, it was basically mothballed for a few months and when finally re-opened, didn’t have tourists to service, making it a quiet escape for locals. Today, it’s reaching closer to its capacity levels, with timed entry to facilitate crowd control.
How to get to the Edge NY and Hudson Yards
The easiest way to get to the Edge NY and Hudson Yards is to take the 7 subway train west from Bryant Park, Times Square or Grand Central Terminal. The ride is about four minutes, and the new station is one of the cleanest in the city. If you get vertigo, you may want to avoid the station as it has one of the steepest escalators in New York, in which case, allow 15 minutes to walk from Times Square. From the Hudson Yards station, it is a two minute walk to the Vessel, Hudson Yards, and the entrance to The Edge.
For bus commutes, take the M34-SBS, M12, and M11 bus lines, which stop within a few minutes’ walk. Driving (which we’d recommend avoiding), the closest parking garages are at 10 Hudson Yards, Abington House, and One Hudson Yards.
The entrance to The Edge is situated at the new mall at 30 Hudson Yards, known as The Shops at Hudson Yards. There is a marked entrance just for The Edge where you can go inside, print tickets at the kiosk, and then go up the elevator to the 4th floor. Once out of the elevator, you’ll see the windows to The Edge NY gift shop and arrows pointing to the elevators.
What’s The Edge NY like?
Well, it’s an impressive, new 360-degree viewing platform that juts out over the streets of Midtown, giving you amazing panoramas of Hoboken, Jersey City, Downtown and Midtown. The uptown views are mainly obscured by new construction, so if you want that perfect shot of Central Park, head to the Top of the Rock instead.
There are plenty of interior viewing areas if the weather is bad, though I wouldn’t really want to be that high up in extreme winds. There’s also an inside and outside bar, restaurant, and gift shop across the three levels. In summer, an ice cream stand is open out on the main viewing deck. If you just want to sit and take in the breathtaking sights, the stairs become a grandstand for selfies and getting off your feet after hours of walking around New York City.
Going up in the elevators to The Edge and the preboarding exhibition.
I am the first to admit that I hate elevators and heights and if you’re scared, trust me – you will at least have trained attendants to chat your nerves away to. The queuing/crowd control system is thoughtfully hidden away beyond the gift shop, with the standard snake of ropes to wander to keep crowds flowing. You will have to go through a metal detector after you’ve scanned your tickets at the first gate.
Walking through darkened halls and automatically opening fire doors, you’ll find yourself part of an exhibition that introduces you to the construction process, and the sustainability endeavors employed across the Hudson Yards. Particularly cool is the initial drilling room, which feels like you’re in the Darth Maul scene from Star Wars The Phantom Menace. Once past the displays, you enter an elevator where you’re surrounded by high-definition video screens. I won’t spoil the experience – or maybe it’s because I had my eyes shut in fear the whole 60 seconds to the top.
Drinks at The Edge Bar and observation deck
After braving the 102-floor climb in the elevator, you may need a drink to settle the nerves. If you didn’t buy a champagne and elevator package, never fear – the bar is readily accessible for all visitors. Drinks at the Edge bar aren’t cheap, but they are tasty with a heap of options including local beers like Brooklyn Lager and the Coney Island Pilsener. Frozen drinks are $18 each.
Mango Margarita: Cazadores Blanco Tequila, Mango & Lime (with the option to make it spicy with Chili Lime Salt)
Watermelon Sugar Sky: Grey Goose Essences Watermelon & Basil + Fresh Watermelon, Lime & Basil
Fly High Frose: Strawberries, Wine, & Martini Fiero Aperitivo + Grey Goose Essences Strawberry & Lemongrass
Dining at The Edge, the Peak restaurant on the 101st Floor
Why stop at drinks when you can dine with one of the world’s great cities at your feet. The Peak restaurant offers a range of enticing menu selections including vege-friendly options like the Zucchini Blossoms, or seafood to savor like the Maine Lobster. Prices are on the higher end of the scale, with starters from around $22 and entrees ranging between $37 and $75. The Peak is open for lunch and dinner and is unforgettable for a romantic sunset sitting.
The 100th Floor at The Edge NY
Between the 102nd floor bar and viewing area and the 100th floor is a staircase that serves as a grandstand of sorts, a popular place to sit and take in the view. On the 100th floor, angled glass walls mean you can peer out over the edge at the tiny cars below. If you’re ready for a thrill, step onto the triangle of glass where you’re looking straight down – it’s one of the hottest spots for a photo.
When does The Edge open?
The Edge NY opens 8:00AM to Midnight daily with the last elevator up operating 50 minutes before closing. The most magical time to go up The Edge is at sunset and the website has the daily sunset time to help you with your plans.
What does it cost for The Edge?
Visiting The Edge NY, you’ll want to plan ahead. To prevent congestion, you need to pre-book a date and time slot. Buy your tickets online before arriving to save $2.
General Admission Tickets to The Edge
Adults (ages 13-61): From $36 onsite/$34 online
Children (ages 6-12): From $33 onsite/$35 online
Seniors (ages 62+): From $36 onsite/$34 online
Children under 6 years of age are free.
New York residents can access a local discount for being a New Yorker: $34/ Kids $29/ Senior $22
To be eligible, your zip code has to match your billing address.
Ticket packages for The Edge
In addition to the standard admissions, you can buy The Edge packages that include a glass of champagne or a photo and champagne.
Champagne package (over 21 only): $55 onsite/$53 online
Premium admission (The ultimate Edge experience. Visit Edge and receive a glass of champagne and a personalized photo book (21+ only): $73 onsite/$71 online
What’s new at the Hudson Yards
With New York City now fully open to tourists, take a look at all the things to do at the Hudson Yards.
The giant gorilla statue at Hudson Yards
You won’t find King Kong anywhere in New York City these days, but there is a giant gorilla sculpture basking at the new Hudson Yards. The gargantuan gorilla by public artists Gillie and Marc Schattner is named King Nyani (Swahili for gorilla) and is the world’s largest bronze gorilla statue – not that you’d expect to run into a cast ape that can fit two humans in its hands.
When you exit the new 34th Street Hudson Yards station, you’ll come out at the Bella Abzug Park, which is named in honor of the representative who was a civil rights activist, lawyer and feminist (1920-1998). Almost parallel with the subway exit, but facing the street is the giant gorilla. Expect to queue as it is popular Instagram fodder. The project is intended to raise awareness and funds for the protection of the endangered gorillas.
Soulcycle outside below The Vessel
The spin cycle trend, Soulcycle made the strategic move to hold classes outside during lockdown and since then, their daily classes have become popular with locals from the surrounding apartments that have been built as part of the Hudson Yards project.
The Vessel has reopened
Dominating the Hudson Yards vista is the newest landmark in New York. The Vessel, by Thomas Heatherwick and Heatherwick Studio, is a honeycomb-like structure of 154 interconnected staircases consisting of 2,500+ stairs and 80 landings. The copper and glass marvel was closed during the darkest days of 2020 as it became a place to suicide.
Thankfully, after a grieving period, The Vessel has reopened to the public. Tickets to Vessel are FREE during the first hour of operation each day and $10 per person after. Due to the tragic circumstances of the last twelve months, it’s now mandated that you have to go up in small groups.
The Shops at Hudson Yards
With its sophisticated engineering ensuring these high-rise buildings can soar to the heavens, while still maintaining an active railway yard beneath, the mix of commercial, residential, and retail, the Hudson Yards is quite the achievement. The Shops at the Hudson Yards eschew their own level of sophistication. You will find a mix of gallery shops of renowned American artists, couture, casual fashion, and dining. Notable shops include Avant Gallery, Camp, Carmen Soul, Cremieux, Dior, Fendi, Rolex, and David Chang’s Fuku chicken burgers, Estiatorio Milos, and Ladurée.
How much time will I need to visit Hudson Yards and The Edge?
If you’re only going up to The Edge NY observation platform, allow for an hour (unless you’re planning on dining at the restaurant). If you also want to climb The Vessel and check out the shops at Hudson Yards, allow another 1.5 hours.
What to know before you visit The Edge
- Since the start of summer 2021, masks are not required to visit The Edge if you are fully vaccinated – but if you are unvaccinated, you should wear appropriate face coverings.
- If you are scared of heights or elevators, this may not be the experience for you.
- You can pre-purchase tickets and print them at kiosks on the fourth floor.
- There are free hand sanitizer stations at the gift shop.
The timing of the opening wasn’t very fortunate, nope… Looks like a great viewing platform, though. I’ll certainly aim to venture up there on my next visit to town.
It’s definitely a worthy add to your itinerary
I am so jealous!! My company did the construction management and I got to go up during construction but I haven’t been back to see the completed project!! It looks incredible!! So much fun!
Did you manage to sneak any photos at the time?
That opening time was really unfortunate. But it’s good to see it getting the crowds it deserves now. Those views are pretty sweet. I think you have it on point when you say you want the Empire State Building to be in your view. Good call.
The Vessel is having all sorts of problems now. There was another suicide despite new protocols in place 🙁
Nice observation deck! I always had a dilemma (similar to what you said about the Empire State Building). If you go on the viewing deck of the one famous building in that skyline… obviously you miss it. 😂 prices to go up to the edge are NYC level rates but glad to see there’s a small discount for booking in advance!
Thats some great views looks amazing and to enjoy a cocktail there also has us sold
They were just building it when we were there and now it’s a statement landmark, as bold as the city itself. New Yorkers have the city to themselves due to travel restrictions, and it’s the best time to take advantage of all the city has to offer before the mass tourism swings back. I’m starting to miss the city already.
Definitely have enjoyed the lack of tourists but they are back and growing in number daily
The last time we were in NYC, Hudson’s Yard and The Vessel wasn’t yet finished. The views look incredible from this height, although my legs will be shaking the entire visit I’m sure! 😀
The whole area is really nice and something a bit different for the city. I almost fainted in the elevator.
What incredible views of the city! With the name The Edge I’m already a little scared. Lol. I too fear heights but usually forget until I get to the top! I’d have a mango margarita waiting for me to help calm nerves. I so wish they had this when I lived in NYC! Although I love ESB my favorite so far is Top of The Rock too!
A drink definitely helps!!!!
A very cool place to enjoy dinner and a view from up there! Wow! I’ve been to NY, but didn’t get to tour the Empire State Building,..and others. Thanks for all your suggestions and tips here! I can’t wait to return for a visit! Love that giant gorilla!
Definitely the hottest tip is top of the rock via the bar elevator = 2 cocktails for the price of the standard admission 😉
So glad that the Edge weathered the pandemic. I haven’t been to NYC since the lockdown, but I look forward to a cocktail from the sky on the next trip!
Hi Bernie and Jess. 102 floors is impressive, but I do imagine there’s a little sway that would be uneasy. I agree that I wouldn’t want to be up there when it’s windy.
We’ve never been to New York but would love to visit. We’d definitely add these sights to our itinerary. We love Thomas Heatherwick’s designs, the Vessel looks remarkable.
Wow! This looks absolutely amazing! Once this is all over I really really want to visit New York for the first time!
Really informative post too, definitely will save this for when I can finally get across!
Hit us up when you’re planning and we can share some pretty unique experiences that may not be on your radar.