Once marooned in the wasteland of the train yards on the west side of Manhattan like a 1,800,000-square-foot glass iceberg, the Jacob K. Javits Center is getting some company that convention-goers will appreciate. The 28-acre shopping and entertainment development, Hudson Yards, has opened just a four-minute walk down Eleventh Avenue from the convention center. For attendees, this means a closer subway station, better dining options, a new hotel, and extra event space.
The development’s upscale shopping center has Tiffany and Coach stores, and multiple food options including Chef Michael Lomonaco’s Hudson Yards Grill; Kawi, a new restaurant from Momofuko; a Spanish-themed hot-food marketplace, and Queensyard, a London-themed restaurant.
A new arts center, The Shed, opening April 5, will link Hudson Yards to the High Line, New York’s elevated park. It contains gallery space and a theater which seats 1,250 guests or holds 2,000 standing. An outdoor plaza can host receptions, and during inclement weather, it is covered by the telescoping outer shell of the building.
The first of five planned Equinox Hotels in the U.S. will open in June with 212 rooms, an indoor and outdoor pool, and a 60,000-square-foot Equinox gym.
To accommodate increased travelers to the former train yards, the number seven subway line was extended to Hudson Yards a couple of years ago giving convention attendees a quicker transportation option than buses or taxis to reach the Javits Center. The convention center is currently undergoing a $1.5 billion expansion which will add 1.2 million square feet by 2021.
The most striking feature of the new development is The Vessel, a 3,200-ton, 150-foot-tall sculpture made from steel and concrete. The sculpture is 2,500 steps to the top and can accommodate up to 600 visitors at a time—exactly the kind of activity a conference attendee is looking for after a long day on the show floor.