New York may have the world's most famous subway, but does it have the most beautiful stations? From Stockholm to Taiwan, these cities have transformed a mundane commute into a journey through some of the world's most beautiful architecture.
1. Komsomolskaya Station, Moscow
Opened on Jan. 30, 1952, the yellow, arched ceiling and ornate pillars have made Komsomolskaya Station in Moscow one of the most recognizable in the world. Architect Alexey Schusev was awarded the Stalin Prize for designing the station, which combined history with beautiful architecture. The station is consistently named one of the most beautiful in the world.
2. Formosa Boulevard, Taiwan
This three-level station in Kaohsiung, Taiwan boasts the art installation known as the "Dome of Light." Covering an area of 660 square meters, it is the largest glass work in the world, dominating the station and giving it an otherworldly feel. It's often even used as a venue for weddings. Imagine getting married in Penn Station.
3. Kirovsky Zavod Station, St Petersburg
Another oppulent Soviet-era relic, this station in St. Petersburg, Russia is among the most elegant metro lines in the world. The line has been open since 1955, and the station is yet another example of simultaeous beauty and utility. Like many of the stations including Kirovsky Zavod, it was used as a bomb shelter during the Cold War. The upkeep of the station has been impeccable, and it's just as stunning as it was when it opened. Also, it's part of the deepest subway line in the world.
4. T-Centralen Station, Stockholm
Known for its impeccable design, it's no surprise to see Sweden with an entry on this list. However, T-Centralen is not what you would expect of a country so well known for modern and sleek designs. Its carved walls incorporate the city's natural underground, turning a network of caverns into a modern space.
It is also part of a metro line that is known as the world's longest art gallery, bringing together the utility of being Stockholm's central station with the beauty of art.
5. Central Park Station, Taiwan
Another station on the Kaohsiung line, this one is not about an art installation, but rather a giant indoor park. It was designed by Brit Richard Rogers and boasts windmill-shaped flowers and a large grass-like area. It provides a green oasis in the populated city and is among the most original subway stations in the world.
6. Champ-De-Mars, Montreal
Providing the link between Old Montreal and downtown, this otherwise unremarkable metro station is transformed by a giant stained glass window designed by Québécois artist Marcelle Ferron. The station opened in 1966, but the art wasn't given to the government until 1968. Once they were installed, the Champ-De-Mars became one of the most stunning stations in North America.
7. Zoloti Vorota Station, Kiev
The Zoloti Votora station is a great example of late-Soviet architecture, and it's become one of the most recognizable pieces of architecture in the Ukraine. Despite its soaring arches and opulent decor, the station wasn't opened until 1989. Under the tutelage of numerous designers, the station is reminiscent of pre-Soviet aesthetic and is a must-see on any trip to Eastern Europe.
8. City Hall, New York City
Last but not least, the mysterious subway station at the end of New York's 6 line. However, even New Yorkers can only dream of this station since it's discontinuation in 1945. Originally, it was the last station on New York's first line. It remains the most beautiful New York station — our own rebuttal to the still-active works of art and transit across the globe.