The Vessel is a piece of interactive art comprising 154 interconnecting flights of stairs, almost 2,500 individual steps and 80 landings.
The Vessel is a centrepiece within the huge Hudson Yards development on the West Side of midtown Manhattan. It wasn’t far to walk from the Martinique Hotel on W 32nd Street.
I’d reserved a couple of tickets on the Vessel website – tickets are free and you can make more than one reservation if you’re worried about missing the time or bad weather. We were 20 minutes early and we had to wait until 15 minutes before to be allowed through.
The interior is just as impressive as the exterior.
My knees aren’t up to climbing so many steps and so I joined the line for the single elevator. I was worried that they might refuse me as I wasn’t obviously disabled – as it was they were fine. I did, however, have to wait 20 minutes as the elevator only goes every 15 minutes and can only take six people. This is going to be an issue for the vessel and I wonder what contingency plans they have in place to deal with an elevator breakdown while wheelchair passengers are at the top.
I took a video during the elevator ascent.
The elevator only has one stop – the top. If you can’t climb any stairs then you’ll be limited to the landing area around the elevator.
The views from the top were impressive, but only really to look at the Vessel from a different angle – it isn’t that high so don’t expect it to be like the Rainbow Room at the top of the Rockerfeller Center.
I was conscious that the next elevator ride down was in either 15 or 30 minutes, so I hung around the entrance and let the attendant know I wanted to be one of the six to board. It was full on the way down.
I enjoyed visiting the Vessel and would recommend you visit, although I’m not sure I’d pay to visit the top when/if they start charging visitors. The vessel cost $200 million to build and that’s a lot of money for a staircase to nowhere and a single elevator!
Monday-Sunday 10:00 am – 9:00 pm