The Vessel

The Vessel at Hudson Yards is a unique monument that has had a troubled history since opening in 2019

The Vessel and Public Square
The Vessel and Public Square Photo Credit: Hudson Yards

It is not the view from the top, but rather the unique design of this 150-foot tall monument of stairs that makes it worth visiting. The Vessel, NYC's newest attraction/landmark is worth visiting if you are interested in unique architecture and design.

Due to ongoing safety concerns visitors can only view The Vessel from ground level at this time. Although the official website lists its status as as temporarily closed, access to climbing the Vessel has been closed for several years. It is difficult to say whether or not the safety issues will be resolved, but, until a viable solution is found, access to the top of the Vessel is likely to remain closed.

In spite of the above, access to the ground-level base is free and open to the public Monday through Saturday 10am-8pm and Sunday 11am-7pm, with no reservation required.

Some of the information in this article is not relevant unless the Vessel does reopen.

So what is there to do here other than climbing the 2500 steps, or getting some great pictures for your instagram feed? Not so much to be honest, but again it is free and there is a view of the Hudson Yards from the top. The downward view of the inside is probably more interesting though. If you are looking for city views there are much better options available, both free and paid.

Both a ramp and an elevator to the top do make the vessel fully accessible, but for those who are able, it really is designed to be climbed.

Opinions about the vessel vary widely. People love it, hate it, or anywhere in between. Some compare it to the beloved Eiffel Tower in Paris, noteing that people where very critical of it at first too, but honestly, comparing this to the Eiffel Tower is like comparing fast food to fine dining. Having said that, the overall reviews are positive. It certainly is an interesting subject for photographs.

Some wonder about the reasoning behind this attraction. From a commercial perspective, it was probably intended to draw people to the upscale shopping centre, luxury real estate, and The Shed Performing Arts Theatre that are part of the same development.

We don't suggest putting the Vessel on your must see list, but if you have the time, or happen to stumble across it, you may want to take a look.

Questions and Answers about the Vessel

When did the Vessel open? The Vessel opened on March 15, 2019.

How high is the Vessel? The Vessel is 150 feet high.

How wide is the Vessel? The Vessel is 50 feet wide at the base and 150 feet wide at the top making the top as wide as it is tall.

How many flights of stairs are in the Vessel? The Vessel has 154 flights of stairs and nearly 2500 steps.

Who designed the Vessel? The Vessel was designed by Thomas Heatherwick.

Facts For Your Visit

Fee: No

The Vessel Hours:
Opening hours may differ on holidays

  • Monday: 10:00 AM – 8:00 PM
  • Tuesday: 10:00 AM – 8:00 PM
  • Wednesday: 10:00 AM – 8:00 PM
  • Thursday: 10:00 AM – 8:00 PM
  • Friday: 10:00 AM – 8:00 PM
  • Saturday: 10:00 AM – 8:00 PM
  • Sunday: 11:00 AM – 7:00 PM

Address: 20 Hudson Yards, New York, NY 10001, USA

Phone: (332) 204-8500

Official Website: The Vessel

The Vessel Reviews

Rated 4.6 out of 5 Star Rating

5 Star Rating This is definitely a go-to place if you are visiting NY! It's an extraordinary architecture. I loved being there. The atmosphere was wonderful. There was music, people enjoying their afternoon. A wonderful sight in this busy city.
Sadia Chowdhury - 8 months ago

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4 Star Rating Looks interesting, but unfortunately they had the upper levels closed and you could only go into the base. They have free concerts in the summer in the plaza by the vessel and there is some nice shaded seating around the perimeter too. Close to the highline and shopping and restaurants in the Hudson Yards and Edge observation deck.
Brian Mueller - 9 months ago

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5 Star Rating The Vessel at Hudson Yards is an architectural masterpiece that truly stands out in the heart of Manhattan. As soon as you approach the structure, you are instantly captivated by its unique and intricate design. The Vessel is a honeycomb-like structure consisting of 154 interconnected staircases and 80 landings. It stands at a breathtaking 150 feet tall and offers visitors the opportunity to climb its various platforms and explore the surrounding neighborhood from a different perspective. One of the highlights of the experience is the magnificent views you get as you ascend the staircases. You can see the entire Hudson Yards complex, the Hudson River, and even glimpse the iconic skyline of New York City. The open-air design allows for a refreshing breeze, making the climb even more enjoyable. What sets the Vessel apart from other tourist attractions is the interactivity it offers. Visitors can easily spend hours exploring the structure, taking pictures, and enjoying the ambiance. The staircases are not just a means of getting from one point to another; they are a work of art themselves. The geometric patterns and the play of light and shadow create a visually stunning experience. Another aspect that deserves praise is the efficiency of the operation. Despite its popularity, there is a well-managed system in place to control the number of visitors on the structure at any given time. This ensures that everyone gets to enjoy the Vessel without it feeling overcrowded. The staff is friendly and helpful, providing assistance and guidance throughout the visit. The Vessel also serves as a hub for community events and performances, adding an extra layer of charm to the experience. Whether it's live music, art exhibitions, or cultural showcases, there is always something happening at the Vessel. Overall, visiting the Vessel at Hudson Yards is an unforgettable experience. It combines stunning architecture, breathtaking views, and interactivity in a way that appeals to both locals and tourists. Whether you are a lover of art, architecture, or simply want a unique perspective of New York City, the Vessel should definitely be on your must-visit list.
Akshaya Bhagavathula - 9 months ago

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5 Star Rating the Vessel is an architectural marvel that offers an unmatched experience. While the inability to go upstairs is unfortunate, the impact and significance of the structure cannot be diminished. It stands as a testament to human creativity and serves as a gathering place for the community. The Vessel continues to inspire and captivate visitors, leaving a lasting impression that extends far beyond its physical accessibility.
Leo - 10 months ago

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5 Star Rating The Vessel is indeed worth the visit! I recommend you to walk the high line from the start nearest to Little Island and make your way to the Vessel, it's seems somewhat rewarding when u make it there! In terms of transportation, the Hudson Yards Station is a stone throw away so no worries there. Additionally, when I visited in July 2023 persons were not allowed to make their way up.
Akiyl 747 - 9 months ago

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Subway Line Nearest Station Walking Time
734th Street / Hudson Yards3 minutes
A, C, E34th Street / Penn Station10 minutes

How to get to The Vessel by Subway

Take the 7 train to Hudson Yards Exit and turn right onto Hudson Blvd. The Vessel is straight ahead and can't be missed. Alternatively take the A, C, or E Train to 34th Street / Penn Station, Exit onto w 34th St. and walk west to Hudson Blvd and go left to the Vessel which is straight ahead.

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