Hilton Vienna Danube Hotel Refurbishment Complete

Hilton has completed its refurbishment of the Hilton Vienna Danube Hotel located 20 minutes from the airport and 7 minutes by metro from the city centre.  The hotel has 367 rooms and guests can enjoy Austrian and international dishes made from local ingredients at its Waterfront Restaurant.

Hilton Vienna Danube Hotel

The hotel has a spacious terrace and the Pier 269 Bar & Lounge.  There is also a new Hilton Fitness by Precor, sauna and outdoor pool.

For more information visit Hilton Vienna Danube Hotel.

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Travel Through Vienna By Fiaker

Think about Vienna and images of waltzing, coffee houses and St. Stephen’s Cathedral are most likely to be conjured up in one’s imagination.  However, the fiakers, two-horse-drawn carriages are just as much part of the city’s culture and there is arguably no better way to see the city.  The term actually originates from the French hackney carriage stand in Paris.  The carriages were referred to Janschky until they were renamed fiakers in 1720.  It was at this time they were also numbered.

Chariots waiting outside the Imperial Palace, Vienna, Austria
Fiakers waiting outside the Imperial Palace, Vienna, Austria

With more than 1,000 fiakers on the road in the late nineteenth century the trade began to boom.  Drivers were born entertainers and often performed as singers.  Nevertheless, it was their discretion for which they were most appreciated, particularly by elite gentlemen and their mistresses.

Enjoy a little old-time luxury yourself from any of the fiaker stands in Vienna: Stephansplatz, Heldenplatz, Albertinaplazt, Petersplatz and Burgtheater.  A short tour, taking about 20 minutes and travelling through the centre of the Old City, costs € 40.  Alternatively, the long tour, which takes 40 minutes and travels through the Ringstrasse as well as the Old City, costs € 65.

A Top Tip: If you wish to enjoy a particularly romantic journey, ask the fiaker coach for a “porcelain ride”, which is a particularly calm and steady drive. This term originated from the time of transporting precious porcelain safely from one place to another. Today, it’s a nice way to enchant your beloved!

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2 Million to Revel at Danube Island Festival

More than 2 million visitors are expected to revel at Europe’s largest free party from the 25th to the 27th of June on Danube Island.  With over 2,000 artists offering live music across 13 stages: pop, rock, hits, Latin, soul, jazz, blues, hip hop, electronic, hard rock – the festival is once again set to be the place to party this June.

Danube Island Festival
Danube Island Festival 2009

The open-air spectacle will see successful international musicians such as Kim Wilde, Adam Green, The Dubliners, Hot Chocolate, Amy McDonald, Aura Dione and Pendulum perform with Vienna as their stunning backdrop.

Locals including, Austrian superstar Rainhard Fendrich will also perform his greatest hits, while the Seer are a tip for their fan community.  While DJs such as DJ Tom Snow will provide the right house sound.

In addition, there will be more than 250 catering stands on the 4.5 km-long party strip, offering a range of culinary delights and accompanying drinks – from juicy steaks and crispy grilled chicken to freshly drawn beer and cool cocktails.

This is partying, but not as you know it.

Danube Island Festival
25-27 June 2010

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2010 World Wine Festival in Vienna

This April the impressive Palais Coburg will welcome leading international wine producers when it hosts the World Wine Festival for the third time in 2010. Participants include Smith-Haut-Lafitte and Lascombes from the Bordeaux region, Champagne producers Pol Roger and Ruinart, Meo Camuzet from Burgundy, Ornellaia from Italy, Roda from Spain and Egon Müller from Germany. Half a dozen leading Austrian wine producers will also attend.

World Wine Festival at Palais Coburg

A presentation format with fine wines and excellent food gives the event additional cachet. Diners can experience the interplay between the wines and gourmet dishes first hand at a series of exclusive wine dinners. German Michelin-starred chef Christoph Rainer from Villa Rothschild in Königstein and Swiss cook of the year Marcus G. Lindner from Mesa in Zurich will be serving up the culinary delights at a gala evening on 23 April, 2010.

World Wine Festival
21 – 24 April 2010
Palais Coburg, Coburgbastei 4, 1st district

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Vienna Takes Centre Stage

Westbahnhof, Wien,
Westbahnhof, Wien,

Film clips are the stars of the show in an unusual exhibition, `Vienna in Film’, 27 May to 19 September 2010, when the Wien Museum takes a look at Vienna’s role on the silver screen.  The exhibition at the Wien Museum shows the city in cinema clips dating back a century. Changes in the fabric of the city and the way it is perceived are highlighted in sequences from popular and lesser-known movies from the early days of cinema to the present day. The exhibition also takes a fresh and at times critical look at the way some established city landmarks are portrayed.

Clips from Austrian and foreign films form the backbone of the show and make for a refreshing new take on the exhibition format. Clips are sourced from works including Erich von Stroheim’s drama The Wedding March (1928), post-war masterpiece Abenteuer in Wien (1952; directed by Emile Edwin Reinert), Willi Forst’s Wien, du Stadt meiner Träume (1957) and more contemporary works such as Nordrand by Barbara Albert (1999) and Antares by Götz Spielmann (2004).

Vienna in Film
27 May  – 19 September 2010
Wien Museum Karlsplatz, Karlsplatz, 4th district

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Spring Events in Vienna

Vienna State Opera
Vienna State Opera

Vienna is a bulwark of culture, be it music, art, history, both modern and old.  This spring the city hosts a variety of events which will no doubt attract thousands of visitors to the city.

26 Jan – 25 Apr 2010: Vermeer. The Art of Painting. Analysis of a Masterpiece/ Kunsthistorisches Museum

“The Art of Painting” is the sole focus of this exhibition at the Kunsthistorisches Museum dedicated to the famous Dutch painter The show focuses on the work’s creation and its reception, composition and importance as a source of inspiration to others.

Kunsthistorisches Museum, Maria-Theresien-Platz, 1st district, www.khm.at

10 Feb – 24 May 2010: Jakob and Rudolf von Alt By Order of the Emperor/Albertina

The leading watercolorists of the day were commissioned by Archduke Ferdinand (from 1835 Emperor Ferdinand I) to compose a picture book of the most attractive scenery and major locations in the Austrian Empire and neighboring countries. Of the 300 large format watercolors on show, 227 are from the Albertina’s own holdings. The finest examples were created by Jakob and Rudolf von Alt, and a selection of their works is on display at this exhibition.

Albertina, Albertinaplatz 1, 1st district, www.albertina.at.

10 Feb – 30 May 2010: A Feast for the Eyes: Food in Still Life, Bank Austria Kunstforum

This exhibition looks at the way food and drink is portrayed in still life painting. It uses around 100 representative works from a range of artistic landscapes and eras spanning the 16th to 20th centuries to examine the history and importance of food in still-life painting

Bank Austria Kunstforum, Freyung 8, 1st district, www.kunstforumwien.at

11 Feb – 6 June 2010: Prince Eugene – General-Philosopher and Art Lover/Belvedere

Prince Eugene of Savoy was Austria’s most important military commander during the Turkish siege of Vienna. He later had the Belvedere built as his summer residence. This baroque gem is the backdrop for an exhibition presenting Prince Eugene of Savoy (1663–1736) as field marshal, statesman and patron of science and the arts.

Belvedere, Lower Belvedere, Rennweg 6, 3rd district, www.belvedere.at

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Charles the Bold, Museum of Fine Arts, Vienna

Reliquary of Charles the Bold Gerard Loyet Lille, around 1467/71 gold, silver, enamel Liege, Trésor de la Cathédrale
Reliquary of Charles the Bold Gerard Loyet Lille, around 1467/71 gold, silver, enamel Liege, Trésor de la Cathédrale

Charles the Bold is considered one of the most glittering personalities of the 15th century: On the one hand he was a powerful knight, on the other he appreciated the splendid imperial culture and all types of precious objects. The Museum of Fine Arts presents an impressive exhibition on the last ruler of Burgundy.

Shortly after his birth in 1433, Charles the Bold is dubbed knight of the order of the Golden Fleece. As the Duke of Burgundy, he extends the borders of his dominion, and therefore his influence, in numerous battles. His notable will to power and his military strength soon earn him the sobriquet “the Bold”.

He surrounds himself with valuable tapestries, noble trinkets and golden arms. For within the war-thirsty commander there also a lies a stylish prince, who likes to dazzle his political opponents with pomp and splendor. In his campaigns against the Swiss he loses incomparable riches (“Burgundy Booty”). Charles the Bold dies on the battlefield in 1477, aged just 43. Through the arranged marriage of his only daughter Maria to Maximilian I, he paves the way world empire for the Hapsburgs: Just two generations later, Emperor Charles V. reigns over an empire on which “the sun never sets”.

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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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