Austria

Austria

Vienna

Park Hyatt Hotel (our four-night stay at this exquisite, centrally located hotel was covered, except for breakfast, by our Hyatt points)

Park Hyatt Hotel

Park Hyatt Hotel

An exquisite, luxurious hotel in a converted 100-year-old bank building overlooking Am Hof Square. Situated in Vienna’s new Goldenes Quartier, within the First District of the city, which is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It also sits within the heart of the most exclusive shopping district in Vienna, near Prada, Louis Vuitton and Emporio Armani and many more, as well as the boutiques of Kohlmarkt. Within easy walking distance to the city’s most important sights, historic monuments and museums.

Sights

  • Historic Centre of Vienna UNESCO World Heritage Site
    • Vienna developed from early Celtic and Roman settlements into a Medieval and Baroque city, the capital of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. It played an essential role as a leading European music center, from the great age of Viennese Classicism through the early part of the 20th century. The historic center of Vienna is rich in architectural ensembles, including Baroque castles and gardens, as well as the late-19th-century Ringstrasse lined with grand buildings, monuments and parks. The Austrian Parliament building, shown in the feature photo above, is exquisite.  When we were there, during Breast Cancer Awareness Month 2015, there was a large pink ribbon, the famous breast cancer symbol, displayed on the front of the building.The pink ribbon is an international symbol of breast cancer awareness. Pink ribbons, and the color pink in general, identify the wearer or promoter with the breast cancer brand and express moral support for women with breast cancer.
    • Stephansplatz, and St. Stephansdom (St. Stephen’s Cathedral)
St. Stephens Church

St. Stephansdom

  • Vienna State Opera, a beautiful Renaissance building and an exquisite landmark
    • We saw two delightful productions: Gaetano Donizetti’s’ l’Elisir d’Amore and Gioachino Rossini’s Barber of Seville. Best to order tickets in advance online prior to your visit to Vienna: information@wiener-staatsoper.at.
Vienna Staatsoper

Vienna Staatsoper

  • Belvedere Palace, grand baroque palace with gardens, fountains, and statues.. The Upper Belvedere houses the impressive collection of Austrian art dating from the Middle Ages to the present day. The glittering highlights are Klimt’s golden pictures Kiss and Judith I, and masterpieces by Schiele and Kokoschka. Prominent works by the French Impressionists and the outstanding collection of Viennese Biedermeier paintings are further attractions at the Upper Belvedere.
    • The Upper Belvedere houses the impressive collection of Austrian art dating from the Middle Ages to the present day.
    • Stellar collection of Austrian art, including the world’s largest collection of Gustav Klimt paintings (recent movie, Woman in Gold, starring Helen Mirren tells the story of restitution of Klimt paintings by the Government of Austria to the American heirs of the original Jewish owner)

 

Belvedere Palace

Belvedere Palace

  • Kunsthistorisches Museum
    • The Picture Gallery, developed from the art collections of the House of Habsburg,   is one of the largest and most important of its kind in the world. The foundations of the collection were laid and its main emphases set in the 17th century: 16th-century Venetian painting (Titian, Veronese, Tintoretto), 17th-century Flemish painting (Peter Paul Rubens, Sir Anthony Van Dyck), Early Netherlandish painting (Jan van Eyck, Rogier van der Weyden) and German Renaissance painting (Albrecht Dürer, Lucas Cranach).
Entrance, Kunsthistorisches Museum

Entrance, Kunsthistorisches Museum

 

Lucas Cranach, Adam and Eve

Michael Coxcie, Fall of Man, c.1550 (Detail)

 

IMG_0704

Pieter Brueghel the Elder, The Peasant Wedding, 1567

 

Pieter Brueghel the Elder, The Hunters in the Snow

Pieter Brueghel the Elder, The Hunters in the Snow, 1565

Among the other highlights in the Picture Gallery are its holdings of pictures by Pieter Brueghel the Elder, which are unique worldwide, as well as masterpieces by Vermeer, Rembrandt, Raphael, Caravaggio, Velázquez and Italian Baroque painters.  We met a talented young art student, Marcela Chiriac, www.marschiriac.com, who was making a precise copy of a Brueghel painting.

Entrance to Upper Belvedere

Sculpture by Jeff Koons, American Artist Born January 21, 1955,  at Entrance to Upper Belvedere

  • Ringstrasse
  • Naschmarkt, the largest food market in Vienna, a foodies’ paradise with inviting restaurants for dinner (though most of the food stalls are closed in the evening)
  • Albertina Museum, large graphic art collection (but many reproductions of Durer)
  • In spring 2007, one of Europe’s greatest private collections of classical modern art came to the Albertina as a permanent loan from the Rita und Herbert Batliner Foundation in Liechtenstein.
  • The Albertina now includes international modern art with key works of French Impressionism, Post-Impressionism, German Expressionism, Fauvism and the Russian avant-garde.
Marc Chagall, Albertina Museum

Marc Chagall, The Kite, 1926, Albertina Museum

  • The Batliner Collection includes outstanding works by Marc Chagall, Claude Monet, Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Paul Cézanne, Amedeo Modigliani, Henri Matisse, Pablo Picasso, Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, Alberto Giacometti and Francis Bacon. These masterpieces can be seen in a new permanent exhibition at the Albertina.
  • The Bitzinger Wurst Stand outside the Albertina has the juiciest sausages in Vienna—the long queue at all times of night and day attest to the popularity of this typical Viennese snack.

Restaurants, Food, Pastry & Chocolate

Bitzringer's Sausage Stand Near the Albertina

Bitzringer’s Wurstelstand Near the Albertina

  • La Piazzetta, Naschmarkt, raucous, welcoming restaurant owned by three talented and hospitable Turkish brothers; inexpensive, imaginative, delicious food, fish a specialty
  • Akakiko,  intimate, contemporary Japanese restaurant near Park Hyatt Vienna, excellent, well-priced food
  • Bitzinger Wurstelstand Albertina for takeout sausages
  • Aida, wonderful pastry and confections, chocolate and marzipan a highlight
  • Chocolate only: Xocolat, in the arcade of the charming Palais Ferstel

 

 

Naschmarkt Delicatessan

Naschmarkt Delicatessan

 

Ferstel Passage, with Xocolat Shop

Ferstel Passage, with Xocolat Shop

Jewelry Shop: Mythos Edelstein, Kranzelbinder (near Park Hyatt Vienna)

  • Beautiful jewelry in a wide price range
  • I found a beautiful necklace for my daughter, a family tradition when I travel, made of amethyst, citrine, and amber beads, and one for my daughter-in-law made of tiny, delicate aquamarine beads

Vienna Private Walking Tour

Excellent guide arranged by JayWay: Andrea Schwaiger.

Travel Agent

JayWay Travel, Central & Eastern European Vacation Specialists: www.jaywaytravel.com

Contact: Carmine Matarazzo
JayWay Travel Inc.
+1 914 500 8912
carmine@jaywaytravel.com
Central Europe Destination Manager: Nataly Karimova

With her educational background in hospitality and tourism and Prague guide training, Nataly is the perfect fit for her combined duties as Destination Manager and local representative for JayWay’s Central European destinations. Part of the JayWay team since 2012 and based in Prague for a decade, Nataly is originally from the Ukraine and has deep local knowledge of the city as well as the region in general. Nataly provided guidance for our entire Central Europe trip, including seasoned guides, automobile transportation with experienced drivers between places, and tips on sightseeing and restaurants.  Georgi Baloh, a skillful driver, drove us from Vienna to Budapest.

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