Comcast Philadelphia

I can’t really answer the question and debated about including a whole post devoted to the mega-corporation’s Center City campus, but there is enough stuff to fill an hour or two on a rainy day. Plus, its central location guarantees everyone will be around the buildings at some point. Obviously – since at some point we’ve done all of these things.

There are two main buildings. The original skyscraper, Comcast Center (1701 JFK Boulevard), has an outdoor picnic area (next to the fun outdoor water sculpture) and an underground food court. They have several typical food court restaurants (and an outpost of Dibruno’s), but we primarily use it as a warm/dry spot to eat when we get takeout from one of the nearby restaurants that don’t have seating and the weather isn’t picnic friendly (Octopus food truck, Dizengoff, Federal Donuts, Goldies, etc.).

This is also the location of the giant LED video wall, with programming year-round and the Holiday Spectacular from Thanksgiving through New Year’s.

In 1959, Philadelphia pioneered its “Percent for Art,” requiring new construction and major renovation projects to spend 1% of the total budget for the inclusion of site-specific public art. Comcast has embraced this and has art all around the public areas. Look up:

Public Art Philadelphia

Several large artworks are the focal point of the new Comcast Technology Center (1 block away at 1800 Arch).

Also located here is the Universal Sphere. How to describe? A sort of mini-EPCOT, Stephen Spielberg designed, pro-Comcast video “ride” (the seats raise and lower) highlighting the power of ideas. Yes, it’s cheesy, but with the right mindset, actually kind of fun – plus, it’s free. You can reserve a spot on-line or just walk up. Shows run every 15 minutes.

Also in the Technology Center is the new Vernick Coffee bar/cafe, with its tasty, Instagram worthy treats and bizarre lack of seating. There is a long communal bench and communal table and a few seats for waiter service in the back.

The building is also home to the new Four Seasons hotel and super fancy restaurant on the top floor, which in addition to great city views has mirrors on the ceiling to show the plebs on the sidewalks below. It gets good reviews, but I can’t comment personally, as it’s a bit beyond my price range and comfort level. Apparently, there is a bar up there, so maybe one day I’ll check out the view.

Note: both buildings have public restrooms – behind the coffee bar in the Technology building and in the underground concourse in Comcast Center.