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Attractions in Vienna-Terrific Tips

Naschmarkt, Lobmeyr, Glasmuseum, Backhausen and so much more. Discover off-beat boutiques in small backstreets, meet and talk with designers personally during your shopping excursion and explore one of Vienna’s trendiest districts.

 © Österreich Werbung / Volker Preusser
1. Naschmarkt

A journey around the world doesn’t take 80 days at Vienna’s Naschmarkt, you can probably manage it in about four minutes. At least, culinarily.

The ones who really know their way around have dubbed it ”Belly of the City”. It has been in pulsating existence since the 18th century and is Vienna’s largest inner city marketplace. Monday through Saturday, the Naschmarkt invites you to stroll, gaze, discover and enjoy. You can buy anything and everything your kitchen needs: fruits, vegetables, meats, fish, bread, cheese. But it doesn’t stop there. Delicacies like Persian caviar, sushi and oysters, as well as an overwhelming selection of international produce, particularly from Japan, China, Greece, Turkey and the countries that used to comprise Yugoslavia. And if you get hungry from all the colourful items, there are lots of restaurants right on the marketplace. What’s more, on Saturdays, you can visit Vienna’s most famous flea market, right next door. more on the Naschmarkt

2. Lobmeyr shop and museum

Former ”Suppliers to the Imperial & Royal Court” Lobmeyr is a symbol of Viennese-designed glass and lighting worldwide. Beyond the borders of tradition, this glassmaking empire today introduces and spotlights the creations of young Austrian designers.

Back in 1823, Lobmeyr opened a glass shop on the Kärntnerstrasse. Nowadays, the glass manufacture and the shop are being operated by the 6th generation of Lobmeyrs. Queen Elizabeth II numbers among its customers, so does Elton John. Still today, the endless possibilities of designing and processing glass are being explored at Lobmeyr, in their quest to ongoingly renew and revivify the enchantment of glass. This extends far beyond traditions which include chandeliers and hand-blown carafes: Lobmeyr is now a big name in the young Austrian designers scene. Brilliantly creative young artists such as LUCY.D of Vienna or Duo Polka have already designed bowls and carafes for Lobmeyr. Glass designer Miki Martinek was even awarded the Adolf Loos National Prize for Design in 2007 for her musselin wine glass. more on Lobmeyr

3. Backhausen

This traditional Viennese company has manufactured cloth and furniture fabrics of highest quality since 1849. It also has the largest archives in the world of original Wiener Jugendstil designs.

Already more than 100 years ago, Backhausen was authorised to manufacture the fabrics and materials for many prestigious buildings throughout the city of Vienna: National Opera, Parliament, Burgtheater and several Imperial homes. For that reason, the family enterprise was awarded the coveted title of ”k. & k. Hoflieferant” (”Suppliers to the Imperial & Royal Court”) in 1888. The company’s global renown stems mainly from its association with the nearby Wiener Werkstätte and the arts of Vienna’s fin-de-siecle movement known as Jugendstil. The company, as a founding member and major supplier of Wiener Werkstätte, manufactures fabrics, materials and carpets based on original designs by artists such as Josef Hoffmann, Koloman Moser, Joseph Maria Olbrich and Otto Wagner. More than 3,500 of these original designs still exist and can be viewed free of charge at the Wiener Werkstätte Museum, immediately adjoining the elegant Backhausen shop. And still today, Backhausen manufactures fabrics and accessories based on these originals. You can purchase them right on the spot, by the way - wonderful gifts to take home with you, full of history and art. more on Backhausen

4. Meinl am Graben

Austria’s first address for gourmets and connoisseurs is located in the heart of Vienna. In a refined, noble setting, delicacies from all over the world are available for purchase here. The selection comprises more than 16,000 scrumptious items.

The bright orange shopping bags with the discreet, unobtrusive logo number among the secret emblems of Vienna: whoever has been shopping at Meinl am Graben is immediately identified as a gourmet. Vienna’s largest fine food temple is truly a supermarket of superlatives. Filling three stories, you can purchase - at prices appropriate to the wares - exotic fruits, truffles, caviar, handmade italian pasta, kobe beef from Japan and rare chocolate delicacies from all over the globe. In the imposing vaulted cellars you will find one of the finest vinotheque selections the city has to offer. And on the first floor, with views of the luxury mile of the Graben and Kohlmarkt, you can taste the products on offer at one of the city’s best restaurants. If you are looking for something really special, this is the place. more on Meinl am Graben

5. Porzellanmanufaktur Augarten

”White gold” has been produced in Vienna for nearly 300 years. This fine porcelain is still made entirely by hand, and one can observe the production from up close on a tour of the Porcelain Manufactory Augarten.

Austria’s presidents dine from tableware from Augarten, guests of the state receive this fine porcelain as an official gift, and travellers splurge on the expensive vases and figurines to take home as quintessentially Austrian souvenirs. With precise craftsmanship and sophisticated artistic design — today, new series are designed by internationally known designers — Augarten unites tradition with a contemporary approach to art.
The manufactory, where all Augarten porcelain is produced, is situated in Vienna’s oldest Baroque gardens, between outbuildings of Augarten Palace. On weekdays the production facility opens its doors to visitors at 10 a.m.: between firing ovens and towers of half-finished tableware, one can observe the craftsmen as they meticulously assemble Lipizzaner figurines, glaze cups, turn plates, and paint vases with chinoiserie and Biedermeier motifs. But they always find time to chat with the visitors about their work and answer questions. And the best part is: under professional guidance visitors can try their hand at designing their own Augarten porcelain piece — and then take the fired object home with them.
Spring 2011 saw the opening of a new museum as well as a traditional Viennese restaurant, a shop and workrooms for handcraft classes.
more on Augarten

6. Sightrunning

Discover Vienna on the run: with the guides from Vienna Sight Running you can get to know the Austrian capital from a completely different side — and at the same time do something for your own fitness, stamina, and health.

St. Stephen’s Cathedral, the Hofburg, the Parliament, and the world-famous Ring: Vienna’s sights can be easily visited via horse-drawn carriage, bus, streetcar, or on foot. If you are more the sporty type, you can take to your heels to see the city, under the guidance of sport experts. The starting line is at your hotel, company site, or congress centre. From there you can choose one of three routes: through the historic city centre, retracing the footsteps of ”The Third Man” along the Vienna River and the canal to the Prater and the Riesenrad, or from the Danube up to the Leopoldsberg, with views of the entire city.
The routes are between eight and ten kilometres long, and there is one suitable for every runner. But if desired, tailor-made routes can also be put together for individual runners or groups. The price per route is
€ 70 for the first person, with a reduction for each additional runner to € 20 for the fourth participant. more on sightrunning

7. Snow Globe Museum

Over 300 museums in Vienna are just waiting to be explored. Aside from such famous institutions as the Albertina and the Museum Moderner Kunst there are also plenty of lesser-known, unconventional sights to discover. One of these is the Snow Globe Museum and its adjoining production site.

What makes a high-quality snow globe? Among other things the speed with which the flakes float to the bottom after the globe is shaken. With cheap, mass-produced models the snowstorm is usually over in thirty seconds. But the snow globes produced by hand in Erwin Perzy’s small Vienna workshop keep the glittering crystals floating with apparent weightlessness inside the globe for up to two minutes! This is no wonder: Perzy’s firm, which was founded by his grandfather — the inventor of the snow globe — can look back on over a century of experience and know-how! Today, visitors to the firm’s own museum can still marvel at many exquisite specimens produced over the years as well as the original workshop of Erwin Perzy I. On a guided tour, one can also learn all about the countless custom-made globes produced in Perzy’s workshop. This was where, for example, a silver snow globe was manufactured for Bill Clinton, incorporating original confetti from his inaugural parade! After visiting the museum, aficionados have the opportunity to purchase their favourite models in the museum shop or place an order for a custom-made snow globe.
Important information: tours must be booked in advance by phone. Opening times may vary; in Advent the museum is open daily from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. more on snowglobe

8. 7tm — die kreative Modeszene, Vienna

Discover off-beat boutiques in small backstreets, meet and talk with designers personally during your shopping excursion, and explore one of Vienna’s trendiest districts.
This is all made possible through Initiative 7tm, which links together the creative fashion scene in Vienna’s 7th district, offering a wonderful alternative to large shopping boulevards and malls. Thirty-four selected Austrian designer studios and fashion shops can be reached easily by foot, offering an absolutely unique shopping experience. In this way, shoppers are able to find and purchase clothes ranging from the elegant to the freaky to the imaginative, as well as unique jewellery, handbags, and accessories, directly from the local designers. The quality of the encounters along the way is also important: in the course of the two-hour tour, the predominantly female clientele, accompanied by shopping guides Lucie or Stefanie, visit shops and designer studios, not only receiving styling consultation, but also having plenty of time to chat with the manufacturers. more on 7tm