Old World Glamour Off-The-Path
A small town palace in a narrow Viennese side street: This is Eugene of Savoy’s Winter Palace. It is not not even Imperial. Why would you squeeze Prince Eugene’s winter palace into your sightseeing programme? I tried it out on a grey December afternoon for you to decide.
From outside, the palace looks bigger than it is. It’s probably whiter than your teeth.
The moment you enter the palace, you are hit by unexpected glamour. I bent my knees as I walked up the grand staircase. The red carpet was lined with life-size atlas sculptures. They blended neatly into the white-washed foyer. The exquisite apartment covered little more than 10 rooms at the Beletage of a town palace off Kärntner Strasse.
Eugene’s Baroque Show Home
Eugene of Savoy’s Winter Palace. Himmelpfortgasse 8 was a rather modest address for military commander Prince Eugene. He was one of baroque Europe’s grand military geniuses. As a high ranking military official of the Habsburg Empire he used this palace as his main residence and office.
The interior design of the Yellow, Blue and Red Salons was magnificent: Dark blue and gold-coloured silk hugging the walls, gold-plated and richly carved chandeliers hovering over patterned parquet floors, mythological figures lounging beneath the ceilings, pompous potentates and historic celebrities exchanging looks; A bedroom showed nasty Ottomans and grim Imperial warriors holding up the Prince’s state bed. The gold, silk and wooden floors in Prince Eugene’s winter palace were extra shiny, following renovation in 2013.
Eugene of Savoy’s Winter Palace. In a floor-to-ceiling painting Eugene of Savoy battled to save the Empire from the Ottomans. It covered three walls, letting you capture the epic dimensions of this victory. The sumptuous Gold Cabinet must have been another bonus for his victory.
But Prince Eugene didn’t only love art and pomp. He collected thousands of books and scriptures, piled up on the shelves of his palace. Shortly after his death, Emperor Charles VI. moved the collection to the Austrian National Library. It is known as the ‘Eugeniana’.
Photography is not allowed in the main rooms. You can get a visual flavour of the winter palace with this video:
Practical Information For Eugene of Savoy’s Winter Palace
Location: Himmelpfortgasse 8, 1010 Vienna (off Kärntner Strasse)
Opening hours: daily, 10am to 6pm
Eugene of Savoy’s winter palace regularly hosts historic and contemporary exhibitions.
Tickets: Get your entrance tickets now
Buy these tickets together with other museum tickets in Vienna