As a major cultural hub, New York City is known for its innovation and technology: in a past feature, we documented some of the quirkiest ATMs (Automatic Teller Machines) we’ve come across in the city, including the immensely popular Cupcake ATM and the Gold ATM. Now, we’re spotlighting inventive vending machines that are popping up across the five boroughs.
From machines that dish out bike parts to ones that serve freshly squeezed orange, vending machines now offer a range of items beyond bags of chips, candy and beverages. Here are 10 of the most diverse ones that you can find in New York City.
1. The Gold ATM
Located just outside Stack’s Bowers Rare Coin Gallery on West 57th, between 6th and 7th Avenue, this gold ATM actually dispenses gold bars and rare coins at regularly updated prices. Reported as completely theft proof, the gold ATM is one of only a handful in the entire world — and while we’re not sure who’s buying gold from an ATM, they’re apparently very popular and used daily.
The machines, which are covered in 24 karat gold leaf, are all made by TG Gold-Super-Markt corporation, an online trading platform for precious metals.
2. The Cupcake ATM
Last, but never, ever least, this Sprinkles cupcake ATM, located on 780 Lexington Avenue at corner of Lexington and 60th, debuted in the Upper East Side in 2014. With the promise that every cupcake will be fresh, the ATM is open 24/7 and can deliver cookies and up to four cupcakes at a time.
3. The Bitcoin ATM
Bitcoin ATM in Crown Heights, Brooklyn
The bitcoin ATM is a recent edition to bodegas and delis across the city. While no one seems to really understand how they work, bitcoin itself has become pretty popular over the years. Even the biggest fans of the digital payment system, however, have come to admit that the ATMs are just a marketing ploy, working more or less as “deposit-only” machines.
Nonetheless, there are now between ten to 15 bitcoin ATMs in the city, with more expected to come. Even if there are a few additional security steps, we encourage you to try them out. The most recent edition is at Mario’s Gourmet Deli, on Amsterdam Ave. and 106th Street.
4. The CVS ATM
Brick-and-mortar pharmacies are inherently convenient, but this CVS vending machine takes convenience to a whole another level. In September, CVS announced that it would be introducing these retail machines in landmark locations across the northeast, such as New York City’s LaGuardia Airport and inside the New York City subway system.
They’re stocked with over 70 products, including “on-the-go necessities” like snacks, home and office essentials and personal care and over-the-counter products. In addition, they also offer items from CVS Pharmacy store brand lines like CVS Health, Beauty 360, Gold Emblem and Gold Emblem Abound.
5. The Beer ATM
Photo courtesy Randolph Beer
This self-serve beer ATM is a recent addition to Randolph Beer in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. With the installation of the Beer Wall, 24 different kinds of beer are now available on tap — ranging from a 1 oz. taster size to a regular 12 oz. In addition to their Williamsburg location, Randolph Beer also has locations in DUMBO and Nolita.
If you’re of appropriate age and responsible mind, we highly encourage you to grab a drink. The beer ATM is currently dispensing beverages at both the DUMBO and Williamsburg outposts with the swipe of a credit card.
6. Soft Serve ATM
The “Love Machine,” a vending machine that dispenses soft-served cream in cups, is a new permanent feature inside Bar Moxy at Moxy Times Square. This machine is the only soft serve vending machine in the country and was created in collaboration with artist Curtis Kulig, whose signature “love me” design adorns the face of the machine.
First, you pick what ice-cream flavor you want on the machine’s touch screen. The machine dispenses soft serve flavors developed by Moxy Times Square’s Executive Chef Jason Hall and Mike Kurtz of Mike’s Hot Honey. The result of this collaboration is a vanilla flavor with a kick of Mike’s Hot Honey’s signature chili-pepper infused honey. The machine also serves dairy free dark chocolate, and a twisted mix of the two flavors (we went with the twist!). Next you pick your toppings: Magic Hour sprinkles, Mike’s hot honeycomb, Legasea black-out cookie or greek yogurt chips. Moxy’s chef opened the machine for us so we could watch it at work!
7. Engagement Ring ATM
Photo courtesy Tishman Speyer
Luxury vending machines are all the rage now, popping up with pristine lighting in the places you least expect them, like the New York City subway. The newest addition is at Rockefeller Center, dubbed The Vend and you can actually buy an engagement ring from it. The yellow rose cut diamond ring comes from Fitzgerald Jewelry from Williamsburg and has 10 grey diamonds on the side, set on a 14K yellow gold matte finish band. It retails for $800 plus sales tax, so quite on the opposite spectrum from the $10,000 martini with engagement ring you can get at The Algonquin Hotel.
The Vend, located on the concourse level of 30 Rock, has perhaps the largest range of products we’ve seen. The six machines contain a total of 170 items. , highlights which include a button-down shirt from Brooks Brothers, a Ruth Bader Ginsberg action figure, a Polaroid camera, socks, stain wipes, CBD truffles, even a Vitamin-C shot. Tishman Speyer, which developed The Vend, calls it “Rockefeller Center’s answer to life’s emergencies.” Almost 70% of the items cost $10 or less, but the price of the engagement ring, along with items by Duncan Quinn from London like cufflinks, wallet, and tie, lend a luxury factor to The Vend.
8. The British Telephone Booth ATM
Located directly at the corner where Bedford and Nassau Ave. meet, this old red British telephone booth very cleverly houses an ATM.
This ATM gets points not only for style, but also efficiency: the surrounding area is filled popular bars and restaurants. It stands right outside of what was formerly Nights and Weekends comedy club, which has since been replaced by One Bedford cafe.
9. Freshly Squeezed Orange Juice Vending Machine
Vending machines offering beverages are pretty typical in New York City, but you’d be hard pressed to find one that serves freshly squeezed orange juice. This one here was recently spotted by an Untapped reader at the Skyview Center in Flushing, Queens.
According to the company website, CCUPS is “an intelligent fresh orange juice vending machine company” based in Singapore. Due to the machines’ popularity, however, they have been installed in countries and cities around the world, including in Beijing, Shanghai, Hong Kong, Malaysia, and India. If you’re craving a healthy beverage and a daily dose of fruit, CCUP is a convenient option as each cup contains juice from 5-6 oranges, served without added preservatives or sugars.
10. Jewelry Vending Machine
You don’t have to visit a jeweler to find exquisite jewelry. In fact, the Brooklyn Museum just installed a vending machine, which sells lock jewelry crafted by Marla Aaron. Her unique pieces, which are all made in the United States, are inspired by “the majesty of bridges, the simplest of hardware elements, and the place where fashion and art converge with Old World craftsmanship.”
“Precious things should be easily accessible, and accessible in unusual places…” says Aaron of the vending machine.“…not necessarily just in jewelry stores; not just in fancy department stores.”
11. Uniqlo Vending Machine
This summer, Uniqlo debuted a fleet of vending machines in 10 locations throughout the United States, including the Queens Center Mall. Called “Uniqlo To Go,” these machines stock a variety of different clothing items, including products from the brand’s “LifeWear” collection.
If you’re in need of a thermal heat-tech T-shirt or a down jacket, head to the mall, where you can find the machine tucked in between a jeans shop and a fast-fashion brand store, reports The Japan Times.