SPOILER WARNING: Plot details follow. Caution is advised!

The New York Institute refers to the Shadowhunter Institute in New York. It serves as their headquarters and a high-tech and highly-protected operations center.[1]

It is also a typically a place where protection can be provided to Shadowhunters, and, in some cases, mundanes and Downworlders in need of their help. Trials for New York Shadowhunters can also take place in the Institute.[2]

Formerly run by Robert and Maryse Lightwood, the couple has since been replaced by two temporary leaders since 2016.[3][4]


TMI102 Deglamourizing Institute 01

The entryway "de-glamouring".

TMI201 Institute glamoured 01

The exterior of the church, glamoured.

Being hidden beneath glamour, the Institute is seen as an abandoned, run-down gothic cathedral by mundanes without the Sight.[5][6] The exterior is in fact a large, magnificent church, while the inside of the Institute is enormous, with several interconnected corridors, hallways, and large rooms.

The exterior of the Institute, as seen from different sides, angles and lighting:


The Institute has an infirmary, a greenhouse, and a weapons room.[7] It also has and the cloisters area—the belly of the church which is convertible, where they can train, hold events, and many more.[8]

The entryway leads right to a central space: a war room called the Ops Center where most computer stations—for monitoring demon activity and researching for missions—can be found, and where preparations for battles and missions take place, often making it the most crowded part of the Institute. In front of the room is a raised platform from which the head of the Institute and other authority figures may make announcements or address the residents.[9][8]

From this central area are several sets of stairs that lead to other raised platforms, including a weapons and training area, and to other hallways that connect to the other parts of the Institute, such as the offices and bedrooms.

The Institute also has an annex, which has a secondary door that leads to the sub-cells.[10]

The Institute's walls contain adamas.[11]

Ops Center / War Room:
Training and weapons areas:




TMI101 Institute01

The appearance of the Institute in the first season.

  • For the first season, the Metropolitan United Church in Toronto was used for the shots of the Institute's exterior.[12] For the Season 2, the interior and exterior shots of the Institute is a combination of CGI and location shots of the Cathedral Church of St. John the Divine in New York.[13][14]


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