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‘Spyscape’ spy museum now open in Midtown Manhattan

by Brittani Tuttle
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Spyscape opened to guests on Feb. 16 in Midtown Manhattan. Photo courtesy of Scott Frances for Spyscape.

A new spy museum, Spyscape, has now opened in Midtown Manhattan, giving visitors  a more clear look at their world through the lens of spying.

This new attraction combines three elements to create its unique appeal: “a contemporary museum, an immersive experience, and a journey of personal discovery.”

Contemporary Museum

Spyscape tells guests the amazing stories of spies throughout history. From spy pilots and code-breakers to the spy catcher who managed to nab the FBI’s greatest traitor, as well as the teenager who hacked the CIA’s website, every story is brought to life through artifacts and multimedia storytelling.

Immersive Experience

This new spy museum features interactive and experimental Spy Challenges, where guests can test their skills in lie detection with interrogation booths, observation in a 360-degree live surveillance mission, and even agility in special ops laser tunnels.

One of these experiences is the Encryption Challenge, where visitors will use ciphers to send and receive coded messages to and from agents behind enemy lines. The success of the missions will rely on the messages and how quickly and accurately they are sent. The outcome of the missions will play out as animated shorts based on real-life events.

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Guests will test their skills in this unique laser maze. Photo courtesy of Scott Frances for Spyscape.

Another experience guests can enjoy is the Deception Challenge, where they will learn to lie and the art and science of spotting lies in an interrogation room. A pulse monitor, along with audio and facial recognition software will track heartbeat, facial expressions and vocal cues as guests try their hand at lying.

The Surveillance Challenge will surround guests with a 360-degree projection of live and pre-recorded imagery. They will wear special headsets with microphones and voice-recognition software as a surveillance officer takes them through authentic surveillance missions.

In the Special Ops Challenge, visitors will have to make split-second decisions, reach for targets and make their way through laser beam to reach the end of the tunnels as they race against the clock. This challenge will test their strategy, agility and reaction times in this twist on a laser maze.

Journey of Personal Discovery

Throughout each of Spyscape’s galleries, guests will be challenged with Question Stations that test their spy traits like brainpower, risk-tolerance, and personality. As they travel through the galleries, their interactions and choices in the Spy Challenges and Question Stations will help to build their overall Spy Profile.

The Experience

Once they enter the museum, each guest will receive a unique Identity Band, which utilizes RFID technology to help personalize the experience. Then they will enter the Briefing, a high-tech theater that rises up through the building and introduces the world of secret intelligence through a film developed with the studio that creates the special effects for films like “The Avengers,” “Blade Runner 2049” and “Ex-Machina.”

The guests’ Spy Profiles will then be analyzed in Debrief, where they will discover which of the 10 archetypal Spy Roles they are best suited for. This profiling system was developed in collaboration with a former Head of Training at British Intelligence and industrial psychologists. Guests will be sorted into one of the following roles: Hacker, Special Ops Officer, Agent Handler, Spycatcher, Cryptologist, Intelligence Analyst, Surveillance Officer, Intelligence Operative, Technical Ops Officer and Spymaster.

Spyscape also hosts The Book Shop, which holds more than 1,000 spy-related titles throughout contemporary and historical fiction and nonfiction, along with a selection of first edition and rare spy books.

The Gift Shop at Spyscape offers a selection of gadgets, smart tech, spy games and products to protect visitors’ transactions and personal communications. The Cafe & Bar inside the museum offers food and drink in a dramatic setting. There are even Multiple Event Spaces that offer unique surroundings for all occasions.

Admission to Spyscape is $39 for adults and $32 for children for a specific date and time of visit, which includes admission to the Briefing and Main Galleries, access to all experiences, and a full Spy Profile which is emailed to each guest once they complete their visit.

VIP admission is also available for $59 for adults, and $52 for children, and offers no wait, and no specific date or time for the visit.

For more information and to purchase tickets, visit Spyscape.com.

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