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Hofburg Innsbruck

Amidst Tirol’s Alpine landscape, visitors are treated to a close-up of the lives of prominent Austrians of the past. The Hofburg Innsbruck, one of Austria's three most important historical buildings, was once a favourite Habsburgs residence.

Hofburg Innsbruck © BHOe/G.R. Wett
Beautifully glazed porcelain stoves that were heated by servants from hidden passageways, painted mirror frames which created the illusion of a real mirror, silk wall tapestries, opulently laid banquet tables and precious furniture from various historical periods. A stroll through the Imperial Apartments of the Hofburg Innsbruck, which has now been restored to its original lustre after a fifteen-year restoration phase, is like a walk through (art) history.

Simply overwhelming is the Giant Hall, regarded by many as the most splendid ceremonial hall in the Alpine region. Rather amusing are some of the everyday items that reflect imperial life at the time, such as the spittoon of fine walnut and the elegantly decorated bidet. An interesting piece of trivia: separate bedrooms for the imperial couple, common at other European courts, were unheard of in Austria in the days of the Habsburgs.

Visitors ready for a cup of coffee in an elegant setting after all this imperial nostalgia should head for Café Sacher. Not the famous Viennese coffeehouse of the same name, of course, but the one located here at the Hofburg in Innsbruck. This Café Sacher's culinary offerings are every bit as "royal" as those of its cousin in the Austrian capital.