Annie Leibovitz Photographic Exhibition in Vienna

Mikhail Baryshnikov & Rob Besserer, Cumberland Island, Georgia, 1990
Mikhail Baryshnikov & Rob Besserer, Cumberland Island, Georgia, 1990

The former head photographer of the magazines Rolling Stone and Vanity Fair  was born Anna-Lou Leibovitz in Connecticut in 1949 and became famous above all for her portraits of US celebrities. Her shots of Bette Midler, the Rolling Stones and Whoopi Goldberg have been seen around the world. However, Leibovitz was most renowned for capturing John Lennon and Yoko Ono just hours before Lennon was tragically shot and murdered.

Today The Kunst Haus Wien presents a cross-section of the artist’s creative work from 1990 to 2005 with the exhibition “A Photographer’s Life”.  The show  is an eclectic mix of photographs of politicians such as Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Nelson Mandela and celebrities including Demi Moore and Jack Nicholson. More extraordinary are the many private, even occasionally intimate photographs from the everyday family life of the photographer. These include family parties, trips to the beach, moving images of the death of her father and shots of the birth of her three daughters, plus pictures of journeys to Sarajevo, Venice, Berlin, Kyoto and Cairo.

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Christmas Markets by Boat

AMAWATERWAYS, the fastest growing river cruise line in Europe, is offering a series of European river cruises in November and December to take in the famous Christmas markets in Germany, Austria, Hungary and The Netherlands, with prices from £1,085 for a 7 day cruise, including breakfast, lunch, tea, dinner with wine complimentary on-board bicycles and organised tours.

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Each town’s market has its own style, some with a medieval theme, some specialising in handicrafts but all of them brimming with atmosphere as shoppers browse the wooden stalls piled high with handmade gifts and decorations, and the scent of mulled wine and baking gingerbread wafts through the air.

The seven-night Christmas Time Cruise operates on two AMAWATERWAYS vessels, Amalyra and Amadolce, between Nuremberg and Budapest, with ample time in the markets at Regensburg, Linz, Vienna and, for Advent with a Hungarian flavour, Budapest. There’s also an optional excursion to romantic Salzburg, a tour of the abbey at Melk and complimentary guided walks and tours in every port.

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Late Summer & Autumn Holiday Offers

Kornelia
Kornelia

Kornelia and Schubertiade Festival Schwarzenberg
Vandans
£382 per week end of August throughout September
4* sleeps 5

The Kornelia Country House is in a quiet area, 300m from the town of Vandans.  The attractive holiday home is on the first floor and has a shared entrance with two pleasant bedrooms, a large bathroom and a kitchen.  A beautiful, furnished garden and a children’s playground are next to the house.  In a very convenient position, the town centre, shops, public swimming pool and the many cycle routes and walking paths are all within 100-300m.

From the 29th August to the 8th of September the Schubertiade Festival Schwarzenberg takes place in Hohenems (32km from Vandans).  This is the most significant and distinguished Schubert festival in the world. Chamber and orchestra concerts, lieder recitals, exhibitions etc.  A festival for Franz Schubert which would accord him his due place alongside Mozart and Beethoven -this was the idea behind the first Schubertiade, which was founded by Hermann Prey in 1976 in the small town of Hohenems situated in the most western part of Austria.  This quickly developed into one of the most renowned of all festival locations, becoming an annual meeting place for an international audience that seeks an exceptional cultural experience: hearing music performed by outstanding artists in idyllic surroundings.  The concerts, furthermore, are not presented in some anonymous or interchangeable international festival, but are part of a structured festival programme whose distinctive identity is formed by an uncompromising dedication to the art of Franz Schubert.

Hollinger
Hollinger

Hollinger and European Bike Week
Afritz
Carinthia, Austria
£305 per week throughout September

Holiday home Hollinger is located in a pretty and quiet area at an attitude of 1000m altitude. Verditz has a family-friendly ski area with good pistes where you can enjoy stress free ski ing without having to wait around for ski lifts. On the langlauf pistes at 1900m you can enjoy a splendid panorama over the Nockbergen and when there has been a sufficient amount of frost you can skate on the Afritzer See. Other ski areas like Kleinkirchheim, Dreiländereck and Gerlitzen are also easily accessible and after an exhausting day why not relax in the thermal baths of Villach or Bad Kleinkirchheim.  Villach (20 km) is definitely well worth it with its zoos, swimming pools, nature parks, museums and castles.  From the 8th to the 13th of September 2009 the world’s largest Harley-Davidson meeting is held on one of Carinthia’s most scenic lakes – Faaker See.

The unique atmosphere of this small lakeside village has an almost magical appeal for the bikers. It is however the people, the bikers and motorcycle fans from all over Europe and even further afield with their gleaming chrome machines, who add to the fascination.  The Harley-Davidson brand brings together men and women, young and old, social classes and indeed whole nations.  You simply have to experience the European Bike Week for yourself to feel the good vibrations that emanate from this event!

Landschlösschen
Landschlösschen

Landschlösschen Luxnachmühle and the Romantic Advent
Häselgehr
Tyrol, Austria
£11828 per week throughout November and December
5* sleeps 26

The Luxnachmühle castle is a very unique place and former monastery in the Alps dating back to 1200. Completely restored in 1998, it became a luxurious 5 star hotel and was awarded the most beautiful hotel in Austria in 2003.  Today, you can stay at this country estate and enjoy all its facilities. The residence is 1150m2 and can only be described by superlatives. There are 5 luxury 2 person bedrooms, 7 suites and 13 ultra luxurious bathrooms. Most of the suites have four poster beds, separate living areas and a separate bedroom. Some suites have an open fireplace and some have several bathrooms. The furniture is sourced from around the globe. There are Italian bathrooms, authentic Greek baths, French tiles and much more.

At Luxnachmühle you can also enjoy the benefits of a wellness centre. It is divided over three floors with every luxury provided. There is a sauna, luxury Turkish steam bath, beauty salon and massage. There are various living rooms and dining rooms on the ground floor, including the old Lechtalstube where barons and baronesses used to dine. The wine cellar may be used after consultation with the owner. There is a large garden with terraces. The grounds even have their own spring where they produce their own pure mineral water. An open air swimming pool with sunbathing terrace completes the package.

If you’re looking for a dreamy white Christmas, the Tyrolean ski resort of Seefeld is a safe bet. A wealth of festive events add to the atmosphere during the Romantic Advent period.  Wooden huts topped with powdery white snow sell all kinds of goodies and tasty snacks at the advent markets, while the local brass band keeps everyone entertained. For the kids there’s a special play area where they can create their own decorations and presents or send a letter to the Christ Child (the equivalent of writing to Father Christmas).

For something a little more sedate there are plenty of Christmas concerts held in the local churches of the valley. The Baroque Orchestra and Choir of Innsbruck University perform in the St Oswald Parish Church on 7 December with a programme of Bach and Vivaldi.  Five villages make up Seefeld and one of these is Leutasch, where, every Christmas, traditional walks around the mountain chapels take place in torchlight to the sound of Christmas folk songs.

Chalet Saliterer
Chalet Saliterer

Chalet Saliterer and Salzburg Christmas Market
Grossarl
Salzburg, Austria
£1310 per week throughout November and December
5* sleeps 20

Enjoy a superb holiday with friends or family in this newly renovated holiday home situated in the heart of the Hohe Tauern National Park, one of the most beautiful regions in Austria.  Guaranteeing pure comfort and furnished in a modern style, the home is 285m2 and based across three floors. There is a balcony, a terrace, a large garden, a sauna with a relaxation area and a bar. The large, attractive live-in kitchen is very well equipped and all eight bedrooms have cable TV. The ski-room has a heated boot rack with the ski-run a mere 100m from the house. (Though, you can take a free ski-bus only 20m from your door)

The Grossarltal is connected to the Gasteiner Tal, which is one of the most beautiful ski-areas in the Salzburgerland. You can enjoy trips to the many other enchanting parts of the Sportwelt Amadé. After an exciting day’s skiing you can relax in the sauna with friends and family. It’s the ideal end to a perfect day.

The tradition and ambiance of Salzburg’s Christmas market make an ideal setting to start off the Christmas season. Every year visitors are enchanted by the charm of Cathedral Square, the traditional booths, the strings of light and the quality of the diversified items on sale. Come and enjoy some of the magic this year: from traditional handicrafts, fine baked goods, aromatic tree ornaments and various objet d’art for the Christmas season. Salzburg’s Christmas market is a feast for all the senses: the delicious scent of mulled wine wafts around booths adorned with precious, decorative, old and new items. Performances by traditional Salzburg choirs and children’s school groups lure a crowd of visitors year after year. The market will be opened by the archbishop on the 1st Saturday in Advent right after the blessing of the Advent wreaths.

All villas can be booked via www.belvilla.co.uk or by calling 020 8099 0751

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Austrian Spa Holiday Offer

If you are yet to book your getaway this summer, you are in luck because Wahanda has teamed up with Austria’s Finest Spa Hotels and Resorts to round up a whole host of great spa packages to send you on a holistic journey to remember. What’s more, Wahanda are offering a free signature facial during your spa break at a selection of their hotels when you mention Wahanda with your booking.

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Austria offers a world-class wellbeing experience with a breath of fresh air and proves to be an ideal location whether you are searching for a short family break, a short retreat or a longer relaxing holiday.  Charlotte’s VVeb and Wahanda have teamed up to provide you with exclusive summer offers so you can enjoy exquisite alpine waters and soothing thermal pools, combined with an abundance of outdoor activities and top cuisine.

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