Top 10 Unique Elevators in the World

As we ride up and down our building every day, confined in our usual metal box elevators, it’s easy to feel a bit claustrophobic. But our imaginations can take us to the most beautiful and extraordinary elevators in the world, some of which we may have only seen in movies: from glass capsules that offer stunning views to external elevators that cling to the side of buildings like spider webs.

These elevators are not only remarkable for their aesthetics, but also for their unique features and functions. From the world’s fastest elevator that can travel at a speed of 75 km/h, to an elevator that takes you underground to explore ancient ruins, there are countless exceptional elevators that deserve our attention.

So, let’s take a closer look at the top 10 unique elevators in the world, each with its own fascinating story and design. Whether you’re an elevator enthusiast or simply looking for a new way to experience heights, these elevators are sure to leave you in awe.

10 Unique Elevators in the World

1. AquaDom

One of the most unique elevators in the world can be found at the Radisson Blu hotel in Berlin-Mitte, Germany. This elevator is actually a tourist attraction called the AquaDom, located at the Berlin Sea Life Centre. The elevator is made of transparent material and is situated in the middle of an enormous cylindrical tank that is 82 feet tall, making it the largest of its kind in the world. The tank is made of acrylic glass and contains more than 260,000 gallons of seawater, which is home to over 1,500 different species of fish from around the world.

Each day, the fish are fed a total of 18 pounds of food by a team of three to four divers, who help to maintain the aquarium’s ecosystem. The AquaDom provides a truly unique experience for visitors, who can ride up and down in the elevator while enjoying an up-close view of the underwater world. This is definitely a must-see attraction for anyone who loves marine life or is simply looking for an unforgettable experience.

2. Falkirk Wheel

One of the top 10 unique elevators in the world can be found in Falkirk, Scotland, and it’s called the Falkirk Wheel. This extraordinary elevator is a one-of-a-kind rotating boat lift that connects two canals: the Union Canal and the Forth and Clyde Canal. The boat lift serves as a connection between the canals, which are 79 feet apart in height.

Unlike traditional elevators that move in a straight line, the Falkirk Wheel rotates boats between the canals using 10 hydraulic motors, making it the only rotating boat lift of its kind in the world. Despite its massive size of 600 tons, the wheel runs perfectly level, using only 30.2 horsepower. It’s a true engineering marvel that attracts visitors from around the world who come to witness this incredible feat of technology.

3. Autostadt Silos

One of the top 10 unique elevators in the world is the Autostadt Silos, which can be found in Wolfsburg, Germany, adjacent to Volkswagen’s headquarters. This impressive structure serves as a car garage that spans multiple levels, but it operates without any driving involved.

A sophisticated system of conveyor belts transports finished cars from the Volkswagen factory down an underground tunnel that stretches for half a mile. The cars are then picked up by an elevator and placed into an open slot in one of the silos, which towers at a height of 200 feet.

What sets this elevator system apart is that it requires no driving. The entire process is automated and controlled by advanced technology, making it both efficient and environmentally friendly. The Autostadt Silos is a remarkable example of how technology can be used to revolutionize traditional systems, and it’s certainly worth a visit for anyone interested in engineering and innovation.

4. Rising Tide Elevator

The Rising Tide Elevator is an extraordinary feature located on the MS Oasis of the Seas, which is recognized as the largest cruise ship in the world. What makes this elevator stand out from the rest is that it doubles as a bar, making it a unique experience for passengers.

The elevator connects the Central Park deck of the ship to its Royal Promenade and can accommodate up to 35 passengers. The two-story trip in the elevator takes approximately eight minutes, giving riders enough time to savor a delicious cocktail while enjoying the breathtaking views.

It’s the only elevator of its kind in the world that combines transportation and entertainment, making it a popular attraction for visitors. The Rising Tide Elevator is a perfect example of how modern technology and innovation can be used to enhance everyday experiences, even on a cruise ship.

5. Luxor Hotel Inclined Elevator

The Luxor Hotel, situated in the peculiar city of Las Vegas, is a standout structure due to its iconic pyramid-shaped design. It’s commonly referred to as the Pyramid Hotel in Las Vegas and boasts elevators that move at a unique incline of 39 degrees. Despite this unconventional design, the elevators provide a relatively normal riding experience due to the level floors, with only a brief sensation of difference.

This innovative elevator design has proven to be popular with all types of riders as it combines a sense of thrill with a comfortable experience. The Luxor Hotel’s unique elevators are an excellent example of how unconventional design can be used to enhance the functionality and aesthetics of a building.

6. Lloyd’s Building Elevator

The Lloyd’s Building, situated in the bustling city of London, UK, is known for its distinctive architecture and is often referred to as the Inside-Out Building. This innovative building design incorporates water pipes, power conduits, and staircases on the exterior, allowing for maximum interior space utilization. Additionally, the building features 12 glass elevators, which were the first of their kind in the UK, positioned on the outside of the building.

These elevators offer a unique and exciting experience to passengers as they transport them up and down in full view of the financial district. This feature has become a notable attraction for the building, drawing visitors who are keen to see and experience the Lloyd’s Building’s architecture and design. The Lloyd’s Building’s use of external elevators demonstrates how architectural creativity can be used to provide a distinctive and memorable experience for visitors.

7. Maritime Museum Birdcage Elevator

The Birdcage Elevator at the Maritime Museum, located at the Victoria Museum, is the oldest operating birdcage elevator in North America. The museum was formerly home to the Provincial Law Courts, and the elevator was initially intended for the use of the second Chief Justice of the British Columbian Supreme Courts, Theodore Davie. However, Davie never had the opportunity to use it.

Despite its age, the elevator’s gold exterior and blue grillwork have been impeccably maintained for over a century, adding to the museum’s historical charm. The Birdcage Elevator at the Maritime Museum serves as a unique reminder of the past, highlighting the ways in which elevator design has evolved over time while preserving its original aesthetic appeal.

8. Globen SkyView

The Ericsson Globe, situated in Stockholm, Sweden, is the world’s largest hemispherical building, standing at a towering height of 279 feet and boasting a diameter of 361 feet. One of its most remarkable features is the SkyView glass gondolas located on the external side of the hemisphere. These gondolas take passengers on a 20-minute ride along the curved surface of the globe, all the way up to its summit.

The SkyView elevator is truly one of a kind and offers passengers an unparalleled view of the stunning Stockholm skyline. As riders ascend the globe, they are treated to breathtaking panoramic views of the surrounding area, making for a truly unforgettable experience.

9. Umeda Hankyu Building Elevator

Located in Osaka, Japan, the Umeda Hankyu Building boasts of elevators that are incredibly spacious, with an area of 11.15×9.2 feet. These elevators are so large that there are studios in New York that are smaller than them. The elevators can carry up to 80 passengers or a weight of 5 tons. The reason for their immense size is that the offices start only from the 15th floor, and a large number of employees need to be transported together.

10. Louvre Elevator

The Museum situated in Paris, France, is a popular tourist destination, not just for its remarkable exhibits but also for its unique open-topped elevator. This hydraulically powered elevator has a futuristic design that makes it stand out from other conventional elevators. The open-top design of the elevator allows guests to have a panoramic view of the surrounding area as they ascend or descend. The elevator is also an iconic landmark of Paris, and visitors can’t help but be amazed at its impressive structure.

One of the most intriguing aspects of this elevator is the way it operates. The circular platform moves smoothly and quietly, providing a relaxing and enjoyable ride for passengers. As the elevator comes to a stop, guests can step onto the slide-out walkway that appears for them to board. This feature is not only convenient, but it also adds to the overall unique experience of riding this elevator.


There are numerous exceptional and unique elevators in the world, transporting individuals up and down some of the highest buildings and providing breathtaking views to those inside, resulting in a feeling of being on top of the world. In reality, riding in any of these elevators is an incredibly thrilling and enjoyable experience. Do well to check out any of the above-mentioned elevators on your next trip.