Grand Central Terminal
Opened in 1913, Grand Central Terminal is the world’s largest railway station with 44 platforms serving several regions on the East Coast.
Why visit a station?
It’s not even fair to call this place a simple train station, because Grand Central Terminal looks more like a luxury shopping mall with many shops and attractions. Most importantly, a visit to Grand Central Terminal is free. The place is a tourist attraction that impresses by the richness of the decoration details from the very first moment.
Outside on the main 42nd Street façade, take the opportunity to photograph and enjoy the magnificent “Transportation” sculpture, featuring the world’s largest Tiffany glass clock. The clock in front of Grand Central’s 42nd Street Terminal façade features the world’s largest specimen by glass artist Louis Comfort Tiffany. Sculpted by the John Donnelly Company, the sculptures depict Minerva, Hercules and Mercury and were designed by French sculptor Jules-Felix Coutan. At the time of its dedication in 1914, this trio of statues was considered the largest sculpture complex in the world. It has a height of 14.6 meters and the clock in the center has a circumference of 4 meters.
Inside, it is normal to be impressed by the luxurious marble floor so clean and shiny.
Step inside and look up at the ceiling to enjoy the starry sky painting that represents the Mediterranean Sea, with golden lamps completing the decoration of the environment. In 1998, a 12-year restoration of Grand Central Terminal revealed the original splendor of the ornate astronomical ceiling in the station’s main hall. The original ceiling, designed in 1912 by Warren and his friend, French portrait artist Paul César Helleu, was replaced in the late 1930s after the plaster fell off.
There is also the four-sided clock. The clock, designed by Henry Edward Bedford and hammered in Connecticut, is made of brass. Each of its four clocks is made of iridescent glass. The rumor that the clocks were appraised by Sotheby’s and Christie’s between $10 and $20 million is considered an urban legend.
Because of the architecture of the dome, it is possible for a person to whisper at one end of the arch and be heard by another person at the end of the arch, which is nearly 50 feet away. This is because of the way the sound waves travel inside this dome and come through clearly and cleanly, even with the noise of people walking by. It’s weird, but everyone wants to test it.
The shops are one of the big attractions at the Grand Central Terminal and are responsible for a large part of the tourists who travel there. They are several shops of famous brands. There are also other shops selling clothes, accessories, watches and much more.
If you want to know in detail the whole history of the Grand Central terminal, a visit is offered with a specialized guide, who goes through the whole length of the place explaining each little piece. The audio tour of the GCT lasts about an hour. Groups are limited.
How to get there
89 E 42nd St, New York, NY 10017