Updated: Feb 18, 2019
Hi friends, here I am with a new post. Today I'm very exciting because I want to share photos and videos of an amazing tour I took yesterday of the Woolworth Building.
You know when you watch movies or simply walk in the Financial District and see that super cool building with a green-ish pyramidal roof? That's it!
Two things you have to know:
- it was completed in 1913 and it remained the tallest building in the world until the construction of 40 Wall Street and the Chrysler Building, also in New York City, in 1930.
- you can't visit its observatory because it's currently private .. so if you know anybody living there that could share some pictures with us, please let me know!
Hard to capture the whole building but this is another external view of it. I'm sure the picture can't make you feel the cold wind we had yesterday!
For this reason I had the genius idea to also take a brief video :)
(I find every possible silly excuse to show you NY videos, isn't it?!!!)
As soon as you go in, you'll immediately realize to be in a wonderful unique old building. To say it all, I had the luck to do a private tour with Barbara Christen who helped to make my experience even more special!
She probably wouldn't like to simply hear "unique old building" and she would be quite right.
I hope she wouldn't mind if I were to define it as a mix of a charmy cathedral in neo-Gothic style originally designed though to be a commercial building.
The building was supposed to have originally about 18 stories but eventually ended up with almost 60!
Close to the entrance, you could also admire some typical grotesques depicting major figures involved in the Woolworth Building's construction.
Sometimes I feel like I'm more a dreamer than anything else but looking also at the architecture of these beautiful elevators, my mind goes back to those times, in 1913 when the building was built and supposed to be the headquarter of the Irving National Exchange Bank . I can envision those bankers waiting for these gorgeous elevators to bring them upstairs to their offices... I wish I had a hidden camera to see this scene!
The video below was taken with my iPhone camera so it doesn't really show how magnificent this building is!
Walking towards the other end of the lobby, you won't notice any altar but some stairs from which you could access some office space. What I personally liked once at the top of those stairs is this impressive ceiling. Barbara explained us some countries are mentioned in it to represent their significance and importance related the industrial revolution. You will read Italy, France, the German Empire, Japan, Russia... and W. Yeah W for Woolworth!
This is also a video I took from the top of the stairs:
Next, Barbara walked us to the bottom of the lobby from where it's possible to access the basement of the building that currently contains an unused vault.
Barbara had also really nice historical pictures showing how this basement used to look like in the past, with two currently closed rooms, one used as a barber shop and the second one as a sort of restaurant with a huge eating table.
Last but not least, she walked us to the second floor where there are two gem-like chapels. As she explained, a normal cathedral would have had these chapels on the main floor but since this is not a real cathedral they were probably used by bankers to keep meeting with private clients. I would have loved a meeting with my financial adviser here!!!
Anyway, even though I tried my best to show what my eyes and lent had the luck to enjoy, I really hope you'll find some time to explore this fantastic building that is part of the history of this incredible city.
A special thank you to Barbara, an extremely kind and knowledgeable guide I would recommend you to meet.