Empire State Building Proposal

The Empire State Building and Top of the Rock at Rockefeller Center are two of the most popular proposal locations, along with Central Park and Brooklyn Bridge Park. I’ll explain the pros and cons of setting a marriage proposal on these two rooftops, along with tips from my personal experience shooting proposals there.

Proposing on Empire State Building or Top of the Rock is ideal due to the breathtaking view they offer of NYC. However, choosing these locations does come with some unforeseen difficulties, so I will try to explain most of them and present some alternative solutions.  

Contact Vlad Leto for a free consultation about proposing in NYC.

 

Empire State Building

 

Pros and cons of Empire state building proposal

Pros –

  1. NYC Icon. ”It’s the nearest thing to heaven we have in New York,” says Deborah Kerr of the Empire State Building in An Affair To Remember back in 1957. Even though it’s no longer the tallest building in NYC, it’s still the most iconic building in the city.
  2. Location. It’s located in the heart of the city: on 34th Street and 5th Avenue. Therefore it’s very easy to get there, either by walking, taking public transport or taxi/uber.
  3. Lots to do before or after. The famous Macy’s Herald Square flagship store is located just a block away, with many other shops like Victoria secret,  H&M, Uniqlo, American Eagle and many more. There are great steakhouses nearby such as Strip House and Keens Steakhouse, along with lots of great food in Koreatown, which is just two blocks away.
  4. Flexible Hours. It’s open 8 AM to 2 AM 365 days a year. The best time to propose at the Empire State Building Observatory is on a weekday morning when it’s the least crowded.  

Cons –

  1. View. You have a great view from the Empire State Building, but you’re missing a key component of NYC, the Empire State Building itself! In my opinion, this attraction is better experienced from the outside because when you are up there, you can’t see it. Of course, you have a great view of the city from this rooftop, but its a gamble when you’re planning a proposal as the view isn’t promised due to weather conditions. It’s very common for the view from the top to be foggy and overcast, which isn’t very romantic.
  2. Waiting in line. The entrance is usually very crowded, and if you don’t buy VIP tickets, you can spend up to an hour waiting to get to the top. Last year the building completed a renovation that gave the rooftop a separate entrance from the building’s tenants. I haven’t visited this entrance yet, but every time I’m in the area I still see a line going around the corner of the building. I will update this post when I visit the new entrance.
  3. Too crowded. Of course, there are always lots of people at the Empire State Building. You should consider the fact that you will need to clear some space for you to comfortably get on one knee.
  4. Wind. Because of the open space and the altitude of the building- it can get windy. It’s usually not a problem during summertime, but in winter it can get quite uncomfortable. There is an indoor area, but you will lose most of the view. *In 2019 the 102nd-floor observatory opened with floor to ceiling window. It’s a great alternative to the main rooftop on the 86th floor, you just need to buy a special ticket for access.
  5. No privacy option. There is no way to close off any area of the rooftop. This is why I recommend private rooftops, it is much more romantic when you don’t need to share your special moment with so many people.
  6. No decorations or drinks. They don’t allow any customization of the area, and you can’t celebrate with drinks, not even a glass of champagne. Again, this is where a private rooftop is much more accommodating. They usually cost around $1200 and allow decorations and alcohol. 

 

Proposing at the Empire State Building Proposal Empire State Building Empire State Building Proposal

 

Conclusion. 

The Empire State building is an NYC icon and absolutely a must-see while you are visiting the city, but in my opinion, it isn’t the best proposal location. 

If you’re set on proposing there, I would recommend that you choose this ticket option: “VIP MAIN DECK + TOP DECK EXPRESS EXPERIENCE (86TH & 102ND FLOORS – NO WAITING)” which is $108 per person.  

Alternative to proposing at the Empire State building.

In order to have the Empire State building in the background of your proposal rather than proposing on it, I usually recommend that my clients either propose on Top of the Rock or rent a private rooftop to have the best view. 

Don’t forget that NYC offers many amazing options for a marriage proposal, like Central Park or Brooklyn Bridge Park, and plenty of hidden gem locations. 

Contact Vlad Leto for a free consultation about proposing in NYC.

 

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Empire State Building Proposal
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Empire State Building Proposal
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Pros and cons of Empire state building proposal. Proposing on Empire State Building or Top of the Rock is ideal due to the breathtaking view they offer of NYC. However, choosing these locations does come with some unforeseen difficulties, so I will try to explain most of them and present some alternative solutions.  
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Proposal Photographer in NYC Vlad Leto
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