There’s no shortage of things to see and do in New York City: shopping, theatre, dining, drinks, sightseeing and so much more.
But the savvy traveler wanting to experience New York’s secret side can discover all sorts of hidden treasures most visitors — and some locals — know nothing about.
What are some of New York’s secret spaces? Read on — but don’t tell anyone…
The Waldorf’s secret train station
Legend has it that deep beneath the Waldorf Astoria Hotel sits Track 61, a secret train station said to have been created during Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s presidency in the 1930s. Located a few streets away from the Grand Central Terminal — more on that spot in a minute — Track 61 has been out of service for decades, although rumours about the space and the goings-on within have persisted.
Grand Central Station’s quiet corners
There’s nothing quite like the noisy hustle and bustle of Grand Central Station; on any given day thousands of people pass through the station en route to all sorts of destinations. And just outside the Oyster Bar & Restaurant in the space is an architectural easter egg — a hidden feature that has come to be known as the Whispering Gallery. Here’s what happens: you stand under an arch and talk very quietly, and your voice is projected diagonally across the space to the far corner where it can be heard even if you’re talking at a whisper.
Coming soon: A seriously huge Ferris wheel
While New York has many memorable monuments and buildings that define its skyline, there’s one thing it currently doesn’t have — a Ferris wheel. That’s set to change when the city unveils the world’s largest Ferris wheel in 2018. Staten Island’s New York Wheel will be 630 feet high (the London Eye, by contrast, is 440 feet) and will be able to carry 40 people per pod —a total of over 1,400 people at a time in total. In true New York style, it will be the biggest such ride in the world.
Go down — way down — to the park
New York’s High Line is a unique, reclaimed and repurposed railroad line above the city streets that was turned into a green, walkable space. But the city’s next exciting park project, slated to open in 2021, will be set in a decidedly lower location. The Low Line will be a subterranean park developed in a historic trolley terminal in the Lower East Side, using solar technology to light up the space and adorned with lush foliage. Developers are hoping the space will be open in 2021.