The recently opened SUMMIT One Vanderbilt provides New Yorkers and tourists with multiple levels of fantastical views and immersive digital installations—all elevated with 25,000 square feet of mirrored surfaces. Kenzo Digital’s Air is a permanent installation in the space that includes outdoor elevators that transport visitors to the highest elevation of the tower, a Snøhetta-designed lounge, and more.
This seemingly vertigo-inducing experience is unlike any other in the city. “The story is about you as the protagonist, your relationship to nature, your relationship to New York City, and more importantly, your relationship to yourself,” says Kenzo Digital. “It’s a very contemplative and surreal experience. It’s a kind of nature experience that is translated in New York City.”
With the careful placement of mirrors, the skyline is transformed into a surreal experience. Edges of the space feel less defined as visitors are made to feel as if they are floating above New York. By doing this, the designers also reimagine the act of observation. Visitors are not only looking outward, but all around them at the space they are inhabiting. Other tourists also become part of the experience, transforming a visitor’s role from observer to participant.
The space also includes boxed glass ledges, allowing people to experience the air from a gravity-defying elevation. The boxes, which feel physically detached from the façade of the building, reinforce the idea of levitation. If the views here are not enough, visitors can experience the highest elevation of One Vanderbilt and the most dramatic perspective of New York City with Ascent—a glass elevator that transports them up the side of the building. When they arrive to their destination, they will be at the highest view of midtown.
For more information and to plan your trip, visit SUMMIT One Vanderbilt’s website. Keep scrolling for a sneak peek at what the designers have in store for your visit.