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 V I E N N E S E  W A L T Z

 
 

    Butterflies and Kisses!

   

 

  

 

Take the next step...!   We say Vienna is lovely in August and September…Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, Strauss, Mahler...the former Hapsburg capital of Vienna resounds with classical music, waltzes, and serenades.  The Vienna Philharmonic -- which Mahler himself conducted from 1898 to 1901 -- and the Vienna State Opera (which faces the Ringstrasse, the beautiful avenue that encircles old Vienna) are respected throughout for their artistic virtuosity.  Vienna was once Europe's intellectual and artistic capital, part of the famed Dual Monarchy of Austria-Hungary, a metropolis that gave birth to movements and ideas as eclectic as the Vienna Secession, Freudian psychoanalysis, and the analytic philosophy of Ludwig Wittgenstein.  (Behind a classical and conservative facade lies an often inventive city that dares to experiment and challenge stereotypes.)

 

 

A section of the Beethoven Frieze

 

Summer is the perfect time to take in some of the Austrian capital's splendid architecture: the playfully designed, wildly painted, and verdant Hundertwasserhaus; J.M. Olbrich's 1897 Secession Hall and its gilded Beethoven Frieze; the soaring Gothic St. Stephen's Cathedral with its marvelous patterned roof of glazed tiles.   The butterfly, that brilliantly colored and symbolic creature, holds pride of place at the Imperial Butterfly House or Schmetterlinghaus.  Butterflies fly free in the garden's Jugendstil greenhouse -- could anything be more unexpected or beautiful?  

 

What a pleasure as well the peaceful dolce far niente of sitting in one of Vienna's many glittering, high-ceilinged cafés while savoring a Sachertorte and a Viennese eiskaffee (strong espresso, vanilla ice cream and whipped cream).  Café Dommayer may surpass its rivals in terms of sheer elegance while Café Demel is known for its irresistible chocolates.   

 

A trip to Vienna would not be complete without a visit to the Belvedere, a stately Baroque palace with an exquisite collection of Schieles and Klimts, including the famed Kiss...enough to seduce even the most jaded connoisseur or lover....

 

Visit: Vienna


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