Beautiful New York

A Celebration of the City

It Happened Today in New York City

05-01 ESBOn May 1, 1931, after less than 14 months of construction, the Empire State Building opened for business. At 1,250 feet, the Empire State Building took the title of tallest building in the world from the Chrysler Building (which had opened 26 days shy of one year earlier) and held the title for nearly 42 years until the opening of the World Trade Center in April, 1973. Universally recognized as the single most iconic office building in the world, the Empire State Building has played an important role in novels such as The Adventures of Kavalier & Clay, James and the Giant Peach, and The Shape of Things to Come, and in such movies as An Affair to Remember, King Kong, and Sleepless in Seattle, among many others.


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