One of the most stunning and ornate of all the Grand Old Dames --some might say overdone -- the hotel re-opened in 2003 after a total renovation. There are no rooms, only suites, some of which are two-stories high, veritable palaces on their own. The grandiosity is tempered somewhat by the quiet gardened courtyard, filled with magnolias and the soft, babbling water.
Ask for a tour of the wine cellar.
No rooms, only suites, and each is uniquely designed, with the top tier boasting Biedermeier and Louis XVI furniture, while (relatively) lower-tiered suites feature Italian contemporary furnishings. Some are two-stories, with kitchenettes well-stocked with wine, beer and champagne. The kitchens in all are well-equipped and minibars well stocked.
YOU SHOULD KNOW Though it went all out for the renovations in 2003, not much has been updated since.
As luxurious as the suites, they are outfitted with golden fixtures, double sinks, and clawfoot bathtubs in the larger suites. Products are by Acqua di Parma. In the uber exclusive suites, you'll find whirlpools and saunas, and not just one bathroom, but two.
This sleekly styled space -- white stone and plate glass-- seems to deny the building's 19th Century history. But it truly embodies the hotel's philosophy: "preserving the past—shaping the future."
Located on the rooftop, the spa includes a whirlpool, a sauna, a steambath, a pool and a large sun terrace.
Small but fully-equipped, it is open 7 a.m. to midnight.
Breakfast is held in Clementine, the hotel's terraced restaurant, which also serves lunch and dinner. The main restaurant, however, is Silvio Nickol, which has you'll know why has earned two Michelin stars once you've tried some of the chef's masterful creations.
There is a hotel garage, if you decide to bring your car, though the expense to park is high. Your best bet is to make use of the public transportation. The Stubentor Ubahn station is near the hotel.
The gourmet’s gourmet, the Steirereck (7-minute walk) kitchen creates masterpieces that are as beautiful to behold as they are to eat. The eatery is A Class elegance, located in the Stadtpark just across from the hotel. For the most tender schnitzel in the city, head to one of the oldest restaurants, Figlmüller(8-minute walk), which has been feeding its guests the finest for more than one hundred years. The Salonplafond at the MAK (Museum of Applied Arts) (7-minute walk)is a sleek and calm setting for sampling some of Austria’s more creative inventions.
For drinks in a beautiful, shady biergarten, a stop at Biergart’l in the Stadtpark (7-minute walk) is a worth a visit. The cozy, yet lively Tinto Rosso Wine Bar (4-minute walk) is a great place to step into for a refreshing glass of vino among a mostly local clientele. For some great live music and a bit of dancing, the Albertina Passage Dinner Club at the Albertina Museum (10-minute walk) is the place to be. Great cocktails, too.
WHY WE LIKE IT
Old World charm and grace is alive and well here. The ambience makes you feel like you truly are in the lap of luxury, and the location on the quieter part of the Ring, near the leafy Stadtpark, is an added bonus.