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Governor Nelson A. Rockefeller Empire State Plaza

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Address: 279 Madison Ave, Albany, NY 12242
Phone Number: +1 518-474-2418
Website
Today
6:00 am - 11:00 pm
Open now
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Hours:
Sun - Sat 6:00 am - 11:00 pm
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Description:

In June 1965, the cornerstone was laid for what would become The Governor...

In June 1965, the cornerstone was laid for what would become The Governor Nelson A. Rockefeller Empire State Plaza. Marketed at the time as a "Design for the Future," the Plaza exists today as an icon of 20th century Modernist architecture. The Empire State Plaza features 10 state government buildings set on a six-story platform connected by a quarter mile long underground concourse. The Empire State Plaza is complete with historical attractions, walking tours, modern paintings and sculptures, memorials and remembrances, a performing arts center, 42 story observation deck, ice skating rink during the winter and plenty of music and other entertainment in the summer and fall.

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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 99 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 35
    Excellent
  • 36
    Very good
  • 13
    Average
  • 4
    Poor
  • 5
    Terrible
Nice architecture

Nothing really to do there but the buildings are nice. Good views of the capital building and the egg shell. Right across from the state museum

4 of 5 starsReviewed 2 weeks ago
maxrebos
,
Boston, Massachusetts
via mobile
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99 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 93: English reviews
Level Contributor
50 reviews
25 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed 2 weeks ago

Stunning visually, quite modernistic. Have great walking shoes on, as you will want to spend most of your time in the NYS museum, and then visit this for a break or walk outside. They were setting up for a concert, which should be quite interesting acoustically from the steps across from the stage. It is not what you go to... More 

Helpful?
Thank Janice G
Boston, Massachusetts
Level Contributor
246 reviews
123 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 156 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

Nothing really to do there but the buildings are nice. Good views of the capital building and the egg shell. Right across from the state museum

Helpful?
Thank maxrebos
Los Angeles, California
Level Contributor
494 reviews
120 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 156 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed 3 weeks ago

Rockefeller Plaza reminds me of the Orwell novel 1984. It looks cold, forbidding and sterile. The office buildings don't have names, they are numbered 1 thru 4. There is not a spot of nature to be found. Skip visiting this, or walk to it, look for a minute or two and move on.

Helpful?
Thank Max G
NYSCapitolTours, Attraction Representative at Governor Nelson A. Rockefeller Empire State Plaza, responded to this review

Thank you for the review. I am sorry that you felt the experience was poor. Please let us know how we can improve. I do want to mention the varied and sometimes overlooked landscape at the Empire State Plaza. The Plaza is set on 98 acres and is made up of 11 buildings. Four are named Agency 1, 2, 3... More 

Level Contributor
46 reviews
11 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 7, 2016 via mobile

Wonderful views, interesting art and lots of picnic tables and benches. I'm not sure it wasn't more crowded on a lovely sunny but not hot spring day. Hard to find a place to park but still great picnic spot if visiting the Capitol or thr NY State museum.

Helpful?
Thank George L
Utica, New York
Level Contributor
1,578 reviews
1,034 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 541 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 24, 2016

The complex of modernist buildings offer great photo opportunities and a beautiful observation deck on the Corning Tower. Superb collection of modern art within the buildings... pieces by Pollock, Ellsworth Kelly, Oldenburg, Calder, David Smith. Must see when you're in Albany.

Helpful?
Thank RonL40
Boston, Massachusetts
Level Contributor
324 reviews
142 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 56 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 5, 2016 via mobile

Definitely take a stroll through the plaza. It has beautiful views and is very peaceful. Very modern, great photo ops, and events are regularly held.

Helpful?
Thank Cara C
New York City, New York
Level Contributor
5 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 27, 2016 via mobile

All though Albany is small this plaza is big. Across from the New York State Museum and near the Times Union Center it is the heart of Albany. With a theatre (the Egg), an ice rink (it wasn't open when I went) and an Underground Mall it has a lot to do. There is a lot of Government in that... More 

Helpful?
Thank AirplaneGuy23
New York City, New York
Level Contributor
67 reviews
22 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 26, 2016

Empire State Plaza sits right next to the capitol building. If you are there you can get tours of both during the week and see the observation deck on Corning Towere. From there you can see most of Albany County. Fairly inexpensive visit. You can do the observation deck, teh capitol, the plaza, and surroundign sights in about 4 hours... More 

Helpful?
1 Thank Donald S
Upstate NY
Level Contributor
98 reviews
65 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 54 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 23, 2016

The Empire State Plaza is host to a variety of events throughout the year. From festivals to home or auto shows to craft shows, it frequently is an interesting place to check out. There are two theaters with a selection of plays and musical events. Besides a large and a small food court, as well as a MacDonald's, there is... More 

Helpful?
Thank MarthaJulia
Denver, Colorado
Level Contributor
37 reviews
19 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 8, 2016

To create the Plaza, Gov Rockefeller displaced thousands of local residents and destroyed thousands of historic buildings. What was created in its place is artistically and architecturally interesting, though.

Helpful?
Thank JaneF80220

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Chandler, Arizona, United States
over a year ago

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