Rockefeller Center is transforming into a groovy roller skating rink this spring
April 11, 2022
The days of ice skating at Rockefeller Center are over—a groovy roller skating rink is opening in its place this April with live DJs, concerts and performances as well as lessons.
Flipper’s Roller Boogie Palace, an iconic West Hollywood roller rink that became a “mecca of uninhibited fun,” will operate a new roller rink between April 15 through October, according to Rock Center’s owner, Tishman Speyer.
The rink, which will be designed by Bureau Betak, will be smaller than the traditional ice rink at Rockefeller Center. Instead of keeping that size, it’ll have space for the public to watch the skaters at rinkside from tables and chairs and from the Esplanades and Plaza on the upper level.
The Rink Level has been restored to the vision of the original architects, meaning that it will now serve as a grand entrance from the Plaza and Channel Gardens. People will now be able to enter and exit through glass doors, which will also allow in light and air.
The roller rink will come with a lot of fun too, including DJ sets, live music performances, concerts, roller boogie nights, food, a viewing deck and a store at the Channel Gardens that’ll sell gear and merch from Flipper’s.
“Roller skating at Rockefeller Center will be a quintessentially New York moment,” said Rob Speyer, the CEO of Tishman Speyer. “We are thrilled to welcome Flipper’s as a partner in transforming the rink level at the Center, and can’t wait to see everyone out there.”
The Saks Fifth Avenue Foundation is helping to support the roller rink to promote better mental health.
“We, at Flipper’s, believe in less scroll, more roll!” said Liberty Ross, the rink’s co-founder and creative director. “Through our programming at The Rink at Rockefeller Center and partnership with Saks, I look forward to supporting mental health awareness and education, encouraging young people to put down their phones, be present, and let go.”
Flipper’s Roller Boogie Palace was originally opened in 1979 by Ross’ father, Ian “Flipper” Ross in West Hollywood, Los Angeles. Now, it’ll take NYC and later this year, West London. With Broadwick Live and Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield, it’ll be hosted in a two-floor, building dating back to 1899.
“Our goal is to build world-class spaces where everyone is welcome; spaces where connection and self-expression roll free, without judgment or prejudice,” said Ross. “It’s my hope to support the amazing roller skating community and the future of the sport, while welcoming the curious to the freedom and fun that is roller skating. Flipper’s is—and always has been — a place for individuality, experimentation, joy and respect.”
Tickets are available today, starting at $20, not including skate rentals. Timed tickets must be reserved online in advance at flippers.world.
Flipper’s Roller Boogie Palace at The Rink at Rockefeller Center will be open starting April 15 on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, 10am-10pm, Thursday, Friday from 10am-midnight, Saturday 8am-midnight, and Sunday 8am-10pm.