From one of the most iconic statues in the world to a 1960s era flight center, classic NYC icons are undergoing transformations and additions. Below are 10 beloved attractions that are giving visitors and locals a new way to experience famous, original New York City this fall and beyond.
1. TWA Hotel, Jamaica, Queens
TWA Hotel at the John F. Kennedy Airport in Queens recently opened on May 15, bringing visitors back in time to the glamorous 1960s and the jet age. Formerly the TWA Flight Center, the hotel features six restaurants and eight bars, inducing “Connie,” a 1958 Starline airplane repurposed as a retro cocktail lounge, and a rooftop infinity pool overlooking the JFK runway.
1. Statue of Liberty Museum, New York Harbor
The first Statue of Liberty Museum opened on May 16 on Liberty Island, offering a new way to discover this New York City monument. The interactive new home for the Statue’s original torch also includes immersive galleries and unrivaled views of the statue, Lower Manhattan and the harbor. Insiders recommend visiting the climate-controlled museum in winter, which is typically a slower period of travel.
1. Empire Outlets, St. George, Staten Island
Ride the free and iconic Staten Island Ferry to Empire Outlets, New York City’s first outlet shopping destination. Opened on May 15, the outlets will be home to 100 retail and dining experiences. Stores such as the Nike Factory Store, Nordstrom Rack and Guess Factory are already open for global fashionistas, with additional shops and MRKTPL, an artisanal food hall, to come.
1. Belvedere Castle in Central Park, Central Park, Manhattan
The historic Belvedere Castle in Central Park re-opened on June 28 after a $12-million, 15-month renovation by the Central Park Conservancy. The project restored the 161-year-old structure, including recreating a wood tower that was part of the original structure, providing stunning views of Central Park’s changing autumn leaves.
1. Two New Interactive Experiences at a Reimagined Empire State Building
The Empire State Building premiered the second phase of their reimagined Observatory Experience on July 29 with a museum on the second floor. The $165 million project features galleries that explore the building’s history, from construction to its pop culture ubiquity. In fall 2019, the Empire State Building and NYC & Company will debut “NYC: Above and Beyond,” a new interactive experience designed to provide personalized travel recommendations and itineraries to visitors. The new exhibit will be located on the 80th floor of the Empire State Building, and will display a customized list of recommendations for users who can then select their favorites to be e-mailed or transferred to the visitors’ handheld devices.
1. A New MoMA, Midtown, Manhattan
A renovation and expansion project is underway at the Museum of Modern Art, which will enhance its galleries and public spaces when it reopens on October 21, 2019. The project will increase the museum’s gallery space by a third, allowing MoMA to showcase their collection in new ways, with an emphasis on art and artists from diverse backgrounds and perspectives. In the meantime, visit the museum’s exhibition space in Long Island City, Queens, MoMA PS1, which boasts impressive and inventive contemporary art.
1. The Met’s 150th Anniversary, Upper East Side, Manhattan
The Metropolitan Museum of Art is a quintessential New York City attraction, and perfect to visit will walking through picturesque Central Park. This autumn, see Félix Vallotton: Painter of Disquiet from October 29 through January 26, which presents an retrospective of the artist’s paintings and prints, as well as displays Vallotton’s portrait of Gertrude Stein alongside Picasso’s portrait of the famous collector for the first time. In 2020, return to The Met for its 150th anniversary celebration, which will feature special exhibits and events.
1. Coney Island and Luna Park, Coney Island, Brooklyn
With Luna Park, Coney Island’s famous amusement park, open weekends and select weekdays through the end of October, the fall is a great time to beat the summer crowds and explore this beachfront neighborhood. Visitors can enjoy classics such the New York Aquarium, recently reopened with its Ocean Wonders: Sharks! exhibit in summer 2018, Nathan’s Famous Hot Dogs and the Coney Island Boardwalk alongside the park. Return in 2020 when Luna Park debuts a new adventure section with a ropes course, zip line and log flume, as well as a public plaza with open-air dining and an arcade, increasing the attraction area to 450,000 square feet.
1. New York Botanical Garden, Fordham, The Bronx
This fall, the New York Botanical Garden features two exciting exhibits: Brazilian Modern: The Living Art of Roberto Burle Marx through September 29, and Kiku: Spotlight on Tradition, opening for a limited run November 2-17. Next year, the New York Botanical Garden will debut the first large-scale exhibition of Yayoi Kusama’s inspiration from and engagement with nature, including new works created by the artists specially for the exhibit. This can’t-miss exhibit will be on view May 2-November 1, 2020.
1. The Apollo Theater
The Apollo Theater is celebrating its 85th anniversary in 2019 with a not-to-miss fall season. This autumn, the theater will present a return of the staged adaption of Ta-Nehisi Coates’ Between the World and Me, a world premiere performance from Ballet Hispánico and the 31st season of the famous Amateur Night at the Apollo. Come fall 2020, the iconic Harlem theater is scheduled to become The Apollo Performing Arts Center, expanding for the first time in its history with two new theaters opening at the Victoria Theater Redevelopment Project.