A tower that looks like it is right out of a movie set? A structure that is remiscent of space age films? The glass eyed bird soaring in the Seattle sky? Or better yet, the infamous tower that features in gripping climax of the film ‘Sleepless in Seattle‘ ?
If you were thinking Space Needle, you got it right!
No doubt this is the most prominent of all concrete structures blanketing Seattle’s skyline. Towering and outshining all other buildings, the Space Needle is the jewel left behind from a nation wide event in the year 1962. What began as a rough sketch by an architect in an obscure coffee shop, soon became the designated attraction for the World Fair conducted that year. When it was finally unveiled to the world, America saw it first glimpse into tomorrow. The Space Needle which would put away the existing architectural niches as archaic and allow futuristic designs to stem from the American soil.
The Space Needle was originally intended to be an observatory tower but today it is also globally recognized as an icon, something to remember the city by, and also doubling as something close to a historic landmark. A trip to Seattle almost warrants a whirl around the observatory in the deck, which is only about 500 feet above ground level. This basically means that the world below is almost negligible with other smaller buildings appearing as but tiny figures and one is literally walking amidst clouds. Mount Rainier and Mount Baker which drape around the Seattle city appear as artistic curvatures in the mornings and gorgeous silhouettes by dusk from so high up in the air. But of course, a brilliant city vista is a given from this dreamy altitude. Many placards are placed conveniently around the viewing areas in the different corners of the tower to explain the various attractions and its history.
The famous Space Needle elevator ascends upwards at a speed of 10 miles per second taking all but 41 seconds to reach this uppermost level. A large plush restaurant featuring cuisines from around the Pacific is the highlight of this deck. This restaurant is perhaps one the first ever to have had a revolving floor deck theme to it. Although a tad bit expensive SkyCity offers a fine spread for anyone who has worked up their way to this exclusive top level. The whole level that the restaurant is seated on languidly revolves around a completing a 360 degree haul in 47 minutes offering a complete view of Seattle in all its beauty. Bacon wrapped cheese is proclaimed as one of the phenomenal ‘must try’ dishes of this restaurant that boasts of amazing service. Sunday brunches here are also a general favorite among people with all kinds of different taste buds. One of the perks of dining at the restaurant is that the ride to the top is absolutely free of cost.
Besides offering a restaurant experience, Space Needle also sublets its ample space to people for conducting their private events, elegant banquets, parties, receptions and the like. All this is done safely 100 feet in the air with the whir of the wind, a painting like view and a touch of class. For everyone who wants to take home a memory of visiting Space Needle, SpaceBase is an exciting enclosure of the tower which encloses the world of interesting souvenirs. Gifts, cards, jewelry, almost anything to remember Seattle by, can be purchased here for a few quick dollars. This is conveniently located in the first floor of the Needle itself.
The most impressive thing about the Space Needle is that, although it is similar to many other sight seeing towers of the world, one must remember that it was built way back in 1960s. It belonged to an era when no country’s skyline could boast of anything similar in design or conception. It was a trend setter in its own respect and continues to awe people with its beautiful interiors and stellar views.
Although the view in summer is priceless with the sun streaming down the concave glass, the best time to visit Space Needle would be around Christmas season. This is when the tower is lit up and the festivity is brimming in full swing in the whole of the tower all the way out to its Sky lighting. Some fantastic shots of the building can be recorded on camera around this time of the year. The souvenir store is also stacked with Christmasy goodies and favorite picks of some great gifts to hand out for the season. On all other days of the year, with a snack or beverage in hand and the city within eye’s limit one can relax under the quiet spell of the wind and enjoy watching the Ferries, ships, water and the mountains from the amazing vantage point. And if you’re lucky, you might even catch a close-up view of an aircraft flying by.
So,what can top a camera full of perfect pictures, a peace inspiring altitude and the wondrous sleekness of an architectural masterpiece?
Of course it has to be the see-through elevator that takes you on a ride up the clouds!