With building work complete, excitement is building around The View from The Shard, the new premium visitor experience in London.
From February 1st 2013, guests will be welcomed to a viewing platform some 244 metres above the capital, allowing them to see the entire city from a single location for the first time.
Standing at the pinnacle of the tallest building in western Europe, guests will be able to see up to 64 kilometres into the distance.
On the Ground
Upon arrival, a series of colourful tongue-in-cheek illustrations of famous Londoners in playful juxtapositions will greet visitors at the entrance to The View from The Shard.
Here Margaret Thatcher and Karl Max are pictured out for a ride together on a tandem bicycle; Vidal Sassoon and Vivienne Westwood are giving King Charles I a makeover; Alfred Hitchcock flees the pigeons in Trafalgar Square, George Orwell is installing CCTV cameras whilst Benjamin Franklin is shown at a cash machine.
The ground floor draws guests into the rich tapestry of London, its diverse communities and colourful characters.
Along the walls, video screens and display panels also show digital maps of London and film footage of city life – preparing guests for the breathtaking views that await them.
Guests depart the ground floor in two high-speed lifts that take just 30 seconds each to reach the viewing platforms.
On their journey skywards they will be accompanied by a soaring anthem from the London Symphony Orchestra, building anticipation of seeing London like never before.
The specially composed music is part of the wider musical score that will accompany guests through The View from The Shard, also featuring acclaimed London-based chamber choir, the Joyful Company of Singers.
In the viewing galleries above London the remarkable 360 degree view over the city is revealed.
Guests are able to explore the view through 12 digital ‘Tell:scopes’ that are being made available in Europe for the first time.
The Tell:scopes - digital telescopes with large touchscreens - enable guests to explore the city around them in real-time, as well as offering alternative (pre-recorded) day and night-time views.
Fully interactive, they are able to identify famous landmarks and places of significant interest in the user’s sight line and provide information about them in ten languages.
Guests are drawn deeper into the story of London as bitesize elements of history, and images, appear on screen.
The View from The Shard is the only place to view the whole of London
In total, 200 landmarks and places of interest across London will be highlighted on the Tell:scopes.
Anders Nyberg, chief executive, The View from The Shard, said: “The View from The Shard is the only place you can experience all of London all at once and the attraction will draw people into the story of London, its history, people and places like never before.
“The unrivalled panoramic views of London will be brought to life through cutting edge technology to provide a truly unique experience of one of the world’s greatest cities.
Tickets are now on sale priced a 24.95 for adults and £18.95 for children.
Head over to the official website for more information.