Ready for a 42-second elevator ride to the future?
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When it was congenital for the future-focused “Century 21” World’s Fair in 1962, the Amplitude Needle adumbrated Seattle’s avant-garde spirit and abstruse might. Today, the 605-foot acme is one of the world’s best apparent skyline landmarks and the city’s best accepted day-tripper attraction, with a revolving restaurant and an ascertainment accouter in the aerial saucer-like Tophouse.
The Amplitude Needle is no crumbling relic, though. In mid-2018, the Seattle figure will acceptance a cutting-edge new look, with an all-glass ascertainment accouter asylum and the world’s aboriginal bottle revolving floor. Allotment of a $100-million beforehand alleged the Century Project, the Amplitude Needle will eventually accommodate a new high-end restaurant that appearance a bottle attic framing the arena 500 anxiety below.
Many years in the planning, the Century Project complex a ample all-around aggregation of experts and the conception of a new affectionate of glass. Added than 100 aggregation associates formed about the alarm during the accession appearance of the renovation, which was done in sections to accumulate the Amplitude Needle accessible to visitors. To install the floor-to-ceiling bottle asylum for the ascertainment deck, a appropriate crane hoisted bottle panels belief added than a ton about 520 anxiety in the air, breadth the panels were set in abode application a custom automatic arm with behemothic assimilation cups. It’s a accurate accomplishment of engineering, as is the bottle alternating attic that’s the aboriginal of its affectionate in the world.
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The Amplitude Needle has consistently been a accepted day-tripper attraction, with crowds zipping up the elevator hundreds of times a day to booty in ballsy 360-degree bend of the city, mountains, and Puget Sound. The aboriginal ascertainment accouter architecture included a solid guardrail and accumbent metal assurance cables that got in the way of a seamless panorama.
Now there’s annihilation amid you and the bird’s eye bend but glass. Wrapping all the way about the ascertainment accouter at 520 feet, a alternation of 11-foot-tall, seven-foot-wide bottle panels alpha at the attic and bend outward. Bottle benches about the ambit chase the bend of the cellophane walls, authoritative a jaw-dropping accomplishments for selfies. Alike on blurred days, you can see for what seems like forever. A arresting admirable access leads bottomward to the 500-foot level, breadth floor-to-ceiling bottle walls and a high-tech bottle revolving attic discount the arena below.
That depends. Do you aloof get a little afraid or are we talking full-on acrophobia? Amplitude Needle tours alpha in an elevator that holds 25 bodies and has windows so you can watch your accelerated ascent. Your abdomen ability bead a little on the 42-second ride up. Once you’ve accomplished the Tophouse, you’ll be amidst by glass, so there’s no accepting about how aerial off the arena you are, abnormally central the 500-foot akin with bottle floors. Looking bottomward isn’t for the aside of heart.
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The Amplitude Needle offers a two-visit amalgamation that’s able-bodied account it if you accept the time. On a bright day, you’ll adore across-the-board bend of the city, the mountains, and the bright Puget Sound. Alike back it’s gray and drizzly, the burghal and baptize bend are unparalleled. For your additional visit, there are a brace of options. During the summer, Seattle sunsets are sublime, and there’s no bigger branch than the Needle for watching the sun go bottomward over the sound. If you can’t beat sunset, acknowledgment afterwards dark, back the burghal sparkles all about you. You can alike glimpse ferries gliding through the aphotic amnion of Elliott Bay on their way to the islands in the distance.
You can atom the Amplitude Needle from abounding genitalia of the city, but the best acclaimed angle point is Kerry Esplanade on the south abruptness of Queen Anne. In a chic allotment of town, the esplanade appearance a ample terrace that overlooks the burghal and bay and offers an bare appearance of the Amplitude Needle. On abnormally bright days, snow-capped Mt. Rainier rises abaft the burghal aloof to the appropriate of the Amplitude Needle. Alki Beach in West Seattle additionally boasts a across-the-board appearance starring the acclaimed landmark.
Seattle Center was congenital for the Century 21 Exposition. In accession to the battleground Amplitude Needle, the 74-acre campus includes a array of cultural, educational, and ball entities. Appropriate at the abject of the Amplitude Needle, The Chihuly Garden and Bottle showcases assignment by world-renowned bounded bottle artisan Dale Chihuly. Seattle Center additionally includes the Museum of Pop Culture (MoPOP), the Pacific Science Center, the abuttals for the Monorail, and the modernist International Fountain, an clear light, water, and carve display.
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Most Seattleites accept been to the Amplitude Needle at atomic a few times, generally with out-of-town visitors in tow or to bless appropriate occasions at the revolving restaurant. On the Fourth of July and New Year’s Eve, locals cascade into Seattle Center to ooh and ahh at fireworks aloft the Amplitude Needle. World-famous bounded radio base KEXP, which has its HQ in Seattle Center, provides music for the busy explosions of ablaze and color.
The Amplitude Needle’s longtime restaurant, SkyCity, is gone for good, and a backup is still in the works. While it’s beneath development, the revolving level–which has bottle floors and floor-to-ceiling bottle walls–will affection a lounge breadth so guests can amble while account over the appearance far below. The Amplitude Needle broke capital restaurant artist Adam Tihany, who has created signature restaurants for Thomas Keller, Daniel Boulud, and Wolfgang Puck, amid others, to appear up with a new abstraction for the one-of-a-kind space. Some of the account floated accommodate cellophane tables and chairs. With any luck, it will be accessible by aboriginal 2019. Stay tuned.
There are absolutely advantages to affairs tickets in advance, abnormally during the aiguille summer season. Tickets are timed so you don’t accept to delay in band for long. The downside? You ability aces a day with awful acclimate (though it’s still account going!). You can pre-purchase tickets the day of your visit, as well, to save a bit of banknote and agreement your spot.
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If you plan to do a lot of exploring, you’ll save up to 45 percent application the accepted Seattle CityPASS acceptance booklet. For $89 (or $69 for kids 12 and under), the pass, which lasts for nine canicule from aboriginal use, includes a day/night acceptance (good for two visits in 24 hours) to the Amplitude Needle, as able-bodied as tickets to the Seattle Aquarium, the Argosy Harbor Cruise, and two advantage tickets for either MoPOP or the Woodland Esplanade Zoo, and either the Pacific Science Center or the Chihuly Garden and Glass.
The Seattle Center Monorail must’ve seemed so affected back it was congenital for the World’s Fair in 1962. Today it’s a absorbing bequest that whisks tourists from Westlake Center–close to abounding of Seattle’s hotels–to Seattle Center. One-way, cash-only fares are $2.25 for adults and $1.25 for kids 5 to 12 (kids beneath 4 are free). You can additionally get to the Amplitude Needle by foot, bus, or car, but benumbed the Monorail is a archetypal allotment of the experience.
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