Elevators perform the simple task of taking people safely from one floor to another floor of a tall building. But, that doesn’t mean that they have to be boring. Many buildings in different parts of the world are equipped with unique accessibility systems that have become major tourist attractions. In fact, many businesses spend huge sums of money to go beyond the ordinary and have a lift that is quite unique to their building. A ride in these systems can prove to be the experience of a lifetime. Let’s take a look at some unusual and interesting elevators in different countries:
- AquaDom (Germany) – Located in the Radisson Blu hotel in Berlin-Mitte, Germany, AquaDom is a 25-meter tall cylindrical acrylic glass aquarium with built-in transparent elevator. The aquarium is one of the world’s largest cylindrical acrylic aquariums in the world which contains around 260,000 gallons of seawater and a haven for more than 1500 fish of 50 different species. AquaDom was opened to public in the year 2004 and it cost around 12.8 million euros.
- Skyview (Sweden) – Skyview is typically a gondola lift built on the South side of Erricson Globe in Stockholm, Sweden. The 100-meter-long device was opened to the public in 2010 and carried around 1, 60,000 people during its first year of operation. It features two spherical cabins which provide visitors an entertaining ride up towards the top – about 30 meters above sea level.
- Hammetschwand (Switzerland) – This is regarded as the highest outdoor elevator in Europe. It carries passengers up to 153 meters towards the peak of Hammetschwand in less than one minute.
- Gateway Arch (United States) – The St. Louis Gateway Arch is an elegant monument that provides a trip to the top of the Arch in 4 minutes and down in less than 3 minutes. The car door features narrow glass panes that allow passengers to view the interiors of the Arch during the trip.
- Oregon City, Municipal (United States) – This is regarded as the single outdoor municipal elevator in the U.S. It connects two neighborhoods of Oregon City. This is a 40-meter device that can carry an average of 800 people per day (as per reports till 2008).
- Mercedes-Benz Museum (Germany) – This is a capsule-shaped device that is located in the Mercedes-Benz Museum in Stuttgart in Germany. The trip takes only 30 seconds.
- Lacerda (Brazil) – Located in the city of Salvador De Bahia, Brazil, this device transports around 9,00,000 passengers per month in 30 seconds.
- Bailong (China) – This is a 326-meter high glass lift built on the side of a huge cliff in the Wulingyuan area of Zhangjiajie National Forest Park. Opened to the public in 2002, this is regarded as the heaviest and highest outdoor lift in the world. It holds 3 Guinness World records – world’s tallest full exposure outdoor elevator, world’s tallest double-deck sightseeing lift and world’s fastest passenger elevator with biggest carrying capacity.