The Secrets of The Shops at Columbus Circle
The Shops at Columbus Circle is one of New York City’s most famous landmarks, drawing more than 16 million visitors per year, thanks to its world-famous restaurants, lounges, and 50-plus retail stores. But there’s more – a lot more — to know about this legendary destination within a legendary destination. Here are some secrets about The Shops at Columbus Circle that just might surprise you.
1. It’s in the center of it all.
Truly the center. The Shops at Columbus Circle is set right on Columbus Circle, which is the exact geographic center of Manhattan, from which all other points are measured. The building mirrors the curve of the Circle.
2. You have Jackie Kennedy to thank.
The two iconic towers that jut into the sky above The Shops at Columbus Circle redefined Manhattan’s skyline when the building was completed in 2004. The reason for the two separate towers? Jackie wanted to make sure the building never cast a shadow on Central Park.
3. It’s got good luck.
On the ground floor of The Shops at Columbus Circle, 12-foot-tall sculptures of Adam and Eve command attention. These bronze works of art are the creation of Colombian artist Fernando Botero and — like kissing the Blarney Stone in Ireland or touching St. Peter’s statue in Rome — it’s thought that rubbing them conjures up good luck. In fact, so many people have rubbed the sculptures that some of the bronze patina has turned to gold. Fun fact: They’re actually hollow on the inside and not as heavy as you might expect.
4. It’s got the best Manhattanhenge views.
Manhattanhenge is a New York City phenomenon that takes place four times a year when the setting or rising sun aligns with the east-west streets of Manhattan — and The Shops at Columbus Circle is a prime location to see it. This summer's Manhattanhenge will take place on May 30 and July 11. Step right out of The Shops at Columbus Circle's 59th Street entrance to get the most perfect sunset view. For winter's Manhattanhenge, you can arrive early on December 5 and January 8 to watch the sun rise right up 59th Street.
5. And then there’s that Thanksgiving view!
A closely guarded secret among in-the-know New Yorkers: The Shops at Columbus Circle is home to one of the best bird’s-eye views in the city for the annual Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. Even better: You can reserve a spot for one of the coveted Thanksgiving brunches at Bluebird London, Bouchon Café, or Landmarc and watch the floats pass by.
6. It’s a celebrity hot spot.
Bet you didn’t know that the condos in those glassy towers have been home to celebs like Beyonce and Jay Z, celebrity chef Anthony Bourdain, radio personality Howard Stern, and anchor Anderson Cooper. And you won’t believe the A-listers who walk through these doors every day. Keep your eyes peeled.
7. You can have a behind-the-scenes tour.
In-house experts will conduct a private property tour for anyone who requests one. It’s individualized, depending on your area of interest. Book through Guests Services on the ground floor.
8. You can be a VIP.
Guest Services is also your key to the extra-good life. They can can print out directions, make reservations at The Restaurant and Bar Collection, and give you VIP shopping and dining passes that change seasonally and can include perks like discounts, free hand massages, and even complimentary champagne with a meal. Want to take it to the next level? Book a concierge for private red-carpet shopping.