Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Times Square Visitor Center

The Times Square Visitor Center is a helpful resource for both the first time and even the repeat visitor. For the newcomer to New York City, the services at the center should prove helpful in planning and enjoying their visit. For the repeat visitor like myself, I stop by to pick up the latest issues "Where New York" and "In New York" to learn of current events and happening in the city.

Operated by the Times Square Alliance, the center is located in the landmark Embassy Theater. The 73-year-old movie theater had most of its seats removed but the ornate interior restored when the center opened in 1998. It's a far cry from the dilapidated center that used to be located on a then unsavory 42nd Street. Incidentally that location was the former Selwyn Theatre which now houses the American Airlines Theatre operated by the Roundabout Theatre Company.

Just last year the center underwent a $1.1 million renovation which did away with the computer terminals (sponsored by Yahoo!) as well as a small section of theater seats. The center still offers one-stop services for tickets to Broadway shows (courtesy by The Broadway League), a Gray Line New York tour desk and a desk offering visitor information about attractions and services.

Some of the new features include the New Year's Eve Centennial Ball which once stoop atop One Times Square in 2007; a Wishing Wall for visitors to write their wishes for the upcoming year which will be added to the confetti that will fall on Times Square at midnight; and the Times Square Official Gift Shop with exclusive Times Square gifts. Every Wednesday at noon, Sirius XM broadcasts live from the center featuring performances by Broadway stars.

One special exhibit is during this June visit is the 2011 Tony Awards Showcase featuring Tony memorabilia from the past 65 years including an actual Tony Award, posters, playbills and costumes.

The Times Square Visitor Center is opened 8am-8pm seven days a week. The entrance is located on 7th Avenue between 46th and 47th Streets across from the tkts booth. Click HERE for more information.


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