There are over 6,000 high-rise buildings in New York City alone. If you’re not from there, and walk around long enough, it all starts to blend together. Everything looks the same. Just tall building after tall building (with the occasional stand-out). Disregarding height, however, what buildings really stand out due to being incredibly unique? What are some of the coolest high rise buildings in the world (that you never heard of), where you go “Wow!” upon seeing them (and not due to their size, but due to being different)? Here are some of the coolest high-rise buildings in the world today that you didn’t know existed.

The Mode-Gakuen Spiral Towers

Located in Japan, this tower, as its name suggests, is constructed in a spiral fashion. It is one of the tallest buildings in Nagoya, at 560 feet (39 storeys). It is an educational facility, home to three vocational schools. The unusual twisting shape was thought to promote an environment which would foster creativity within the schools. It has become a landmark of Nagoya and as Gordon Gill, CTBUH 2009 Awards Chair said “Finally we see a rotated tower scheme that has real integrity. It is well planned and creatively varied in its spatial experiences.”


Formerly known as Carnegie 57, One57 stands at 75 storeys tall and is located in Midtown, Manhattan. It is over 1000 feet tall, the tallest residential building in New York City until 432 Park Avenue was built. In January 2015, the most expensive residence in New York City ever sold was in this building. It was designed by Pritzker Prize-winning architect Christian de Portzamparc.

The Corning Glass Building

The Corning Glass Building has a stylistic green-glass facade and like One57, is located in Manhattan. It is 26-storeys and was constructed between 1956 and 1959. It was the first glass-walled skyscraper on Fifth Avenue. It features rotating art exhibitions in the lobby and it was designed by Wallace K. Harrison. The Corning Glass Building was recognized for achieving a pinnacle of refinement in the design of glass curtain-wall towers.

Kingdom Centre

The Kingdom Centre is the world’s third tallest building with a hole, after Shanghai World Financial Center and Tuntex Sky Tower. It has a shopping mall, a Four Seasons hotel, and apartments within. It stands at nearly 1000 feet tall and is the third tallest skyscraper in all of Jordan. It cost $453 million to build and was completed in 2002. It features a very cool looking parabolic arch as well, and was designed by Richard Tenguerian.

Robot Building

Probably the coolest looking building on this list, the Robot Building has its name for a good reason. It looks like an actual robot. It was completed in 1986 for only $10 million, the Robot Building stands at 20 storeys and is located in Bangkok, Thailand. It was selected by the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles as one of the 50 seminal buildings of the century. It earned several other awards for its unique design.

Genex Tower

Also known as Western City Gate, Genex Tower is located in Belgrade, Serbia. It was designed in 1977 in the brutalist style. There are two towers connected by a two-storey bridge with a revolving restaurant on top. It stands at 35 storeys (115 meters) as the second tallest high-rise in Belgrade. The design is meant to resemble a high-rise gate, greeting people who arrive in the city.

Are there any buildings you would add to this list? Sound off in the comment section below.