Hotel Imperial Vienna. If you want to gold frame your special trip, go for the boundless luxury of this hotel. Unless you are Queen Elizabeth II or Prince Sultan al Kabeer, Hotel Imperial is out of the ordinary. To find out why you should upgrade to this place read my comprehensive report.
Hotel Imperial Vienna: What To Expect
Prominently lining up on Ringstrasse boulevard, the Imperial is right next to Musikverein, home of the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra and location of the famous New Year’s Concert.
At Hotel Imperial ‘cool’ is an unword. On the contrary, old-world exuberance and classical European culture reign proudly and without affectations. Right when entering the lobby you met sparkling chandeliers, giant paintings of the Austrian Emperors, and shiny marble.
Whereas Hotel Sacher is legendary, the Imperial is Austria’s official residence for state visits. Although you could have expected more stiffness, the receptionist checked me in using that respectful informality that made you feel both special and welcome.
But not only state officials like to dwell in this jaw-dropping town palace. For almost 150 years, international celebrities, doyens of classical music, senior politicians and business people have run over the Imperial.
To name a few, just think of Charlie Chaplin to George Michael, J.F. Kennedy and Bill Clinton to the Queen Elizabeth II and the Emperor and Empress of Japan.
With the exception that at Imperial you could rest your head and were fantastically looked after. Almost throughout the 138 rooms and suites historic paintings dominated the scene. Whether in the halls, rooms or suites, upholstered French-style furniture in vibrant colours inevitably called for a break. Though I’m no cat, my other favorites were the heavy brocade curtains with huge tassels. Mixed with soft pastel silk wallpaper, glitzy chandeliers, gold-plated mirrors, you tasted a mesmerizing concoction of pure luxury.
My Own Four Walls
Hotel Imperial Vienna. If you had grown up in Vienna, my room would have made you feel equally nostalgic. More than anything, it brought back those Austrian soap operas from the 1940s: Where on Saturday afternoon Empress Maria Theresia would ponder about the Empire’s fate. When Empress Sissi would indulge in candied violets and the Congress of Vienna waltzed away.
Since Viennese feel nostalgic at the Imperial it’s because this site displays an authentic setting: the blue silk wall paper, the rich stucco ceilings, the upholstered Empire-style chairs, the romantic flower paintings…
As a 5-star hotel would require, my bed was immaculate. In fact, elegance is often uncomfortable, though that was not the case. Where on earth do I get such a heavenly mattress that is neither too soft nor too hard?
Besides an exquisite bed great connectivity contributes as much to a delightful stay. Unlike with some other luxury places, Wifi was not only free throughout the hotel but worked seamlessly.
As you can see my favourite detail in the bathroom was its frosted shower door carrying the house’s embleme. Although most luxury hotels such as the Imperial boast a heated marble floor the magic is in the detail.
A note aside: If you upgrade to a suite, you can get your personal butler service. Upon arrival, he will hand over your personal business cards with the Imperial’s address. Not just will your butler clean your shoes, unpack and pack your suitcases. He will iron your morning newspaper! For ultimate relaxation, he will also prepare a rose petal bath, and advise and accompany you on antiquities shopping trips if requested.
Breakfast – What Shall I Tell You
Hotel Imperial Vienna. Along with bathrooms and Wifi, breakfasts are mission-critical for a great hotel. As with a luxury Viennese hotel it is at the end only as good as its bread and cake selection.
From the first serving it was clear that Imperial was serious about bread and cakes. However, it wasn’t so much the impressive amount of fresh viennoiseries and cakes. Moreover, two very distinct features won the morning: the handmade irregular rolls (Kaisersemmeln) and a wonderful traditional nut strudel that I last had at my late Viennese grandmother’s. In the photo you can see part II of my breakfast: Kaisersemmeln with honey, a soft egg, Staud’s jams, and a melange.
The Imperial’s Signature Cake
The Imperial includes a traditional café and restaurant, serving classical Viennese cuisine. Most importantly for cake connoisseurs, the Imperial Torteis the secret queen of Viennese cakes for many locals:
A square shaped multi-layered chocolate cake wearing a thin coat of marzipane and chocolate which is decorated with an embleme of the Imperial Eagle. I tried it long ago and made it my favourite Viennese cake.
Michelin Star Restaurant OPUS
Like other luxury hotels the Imperial boasts its own fine dining space. However, you can safely expect a level up on haute cuisine. Why? Because OPUS is a place where its chef arranges dinners and receptions for the Austrian president, famous maestri and artists. As for the type of cuisine prepare for eclectic food with a sometimes Austrian twist.
In contrast to the Imperial luxury OPUS’ interiors emulate elegant 1930s style of Viennese artist Josef Hoffmann. Click to find out more about restaurant OPUS.
Other Things To Know About Hotel Imperial
In 1867, the German Duke of Württemberg needed a home on Ringstrasse and built a town palace. At the occasion of the World Exposition 1873 the palace converted into Hotel Imperial. Why? Because the Duke and his wife did not feel comfortable there – hard to believe.
At the end of World War II, the Russian Allies used the Hotel Imperial Vienna as their headquarters. Whereas the British used Hotel Sacher.
Note: I was invited by Hotel Imperial. All opinions expressed and English language mistakes made are my own.
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