Palais Hansen – Kempinski
Contributed by Jens Hoffmann
At a time when more and more hotels are uniform in appearance I love hotels with unusual forms and style.
At Palais Hansen every stone recalls a fascinating history, the luxury 5-star hotel Kempinski is a true gem.
Designed as a hotel for the 1873 World Exhibition by Theophil Edvard von Hansen and Heinrich Förster, the building never opened its doors to guests, and it has taken more than 140 years for the building to be put to its originally intended use.
Perfect restoration and interior construction were conducted under the aegis of Vienna-based architect Boris Podrecca, the Austrian Atelier Hayde Architekten and designer Jean-Claude Laville.
On seven floors, the heritage-listed renaissance style building accommodates 152 rooms and suites, the Kempinski The Spa, two restaurants and two bars, a florist’s and a delicatessen, 17 private residential apartments as well as Vienna’s largest hotel cigar lounge.
Designed as an extended living room for hotel guests and visitors alike, the bright and spacious Lobby Lounge & Bar is the heart and soul of the Palais Hansen with a lovely team time, better the Vienna afternoon tea with or without Sacher cake.
Traditional, yet unmistakably Viennese, this culinary experience is sure to be a new staple of Viennese lifestyle.
The historical mezzanine level is all about wellness.
In six treatment rooms, guests can enjoy treatments inspired by the seasons of the year, administered using Elemental Herbology products and anti-aging cosmetics by Daniele de Winter. Sprinkled with Ottoman-style design elements, several saunas, a steam room, a hydropool and a gym Kempinski The Spa’s comprehensive list of amenities.
Situated in the heart of Vienna, the Palais Hansen Kempinski Vienna is the ideal basis to explore the city.
Sights like the Burgtheater, St. Stephen’s Cathedral, the Sigmund Freud Museum or the Rathausplatz square, Mozart house are only a few minutes walk away.
For sport freaks, you will find nice jogging trails stretch along the nearby Donaukanal and the Prater amusement park.
We had a fantastic stay at this glamorous hotel.
To sleep in the Hansen suite was a chilled experience.
F&B tips: “Die Küche” & “Edvard” in the Palais Hansen.
We tried only “Die Küche”.
The guests can place themself in the capable hands of the sommelier, with his wealth of knowledge and experience. We had a nice white wine from one of my favourites South african vineyards.
Winemaker and golf pro Ernie Els (South Africa). Beautiful joy, liquid sex.
The Chef de Cuisine Mr. Vogel creates lovely austrian compositions – to match the charming ambience.
Followed by a great dessert mixture with cake, ice and chocolate. A perfect evening.
The “Edvard” was not on our plan, but we heard it serves unpretentious, seasonal fare including traditional recipes with a light twist. Inspiring the culinary team to new heights of creativity, the predominantly local produce used for the dishes is combined with spices and cooking techniques from around the globe.
Thanks to its separate entrance opening directly onto Schottenring street, the restaurant is probably the perfect spot for nice dinners in a relaxed atmosphere.
Finally, the night bar “Henri Lou”, elegantly designed in white and blue, invites guests to wind down with classic and seasonal cocktails or fine Champagne.
Vienna’s youngest nightlife catwalk is named after the exceptional writer Lou Andreas-Salomé, one of the first women in Austria to be accepted into male-dominated circles including Friedrich Nietzsche or Sigmund Freud. Fittingly, a female bar manager and a female bar keeper are in charge at the Henri Lou. The bar also plays host to Austrian and international DJs Thursday through Saturday nights, which was quite chilly.
Resto tip #2 – Palais Coburg.
The Coburg is also a luxury hotel in Vienna dating back to 1864.
The restaurant is a opportunity, the wine list is immense, representing a cellar with 5,000 separate bins and 65,000 bottles.
We had a salad of veal and celery, which worked well, the crunchy and distinctive taste of the celery a nice earthy counterpoint to the veal, the good salad leaves having a celery-flavoured dressing, we had a veloute of duck, fluffed up and having strong duck flavour, caserved with a pair of crisp duck samosas on the side; the key here was how well the flavour came through.
Desserts here arrive the old-fashioned way, on a trolley. We tried a rich chocolate cake, apple shortcake with white chocolate, and the legendary apple strudel. These were all nicely made, the service was extremely good and helpful.
Palais Hansen a glamorous journey back to a glorious past.
Information: Palais Hansen Kempinski