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Monthly Archives: November 2010

5 Tips for Visiting Vienna in Luxury

Vienna-XMass-MarketThe Rathaus (City Hall) Christkindlmarkt (Chrismas Market) in Vienna

1 General
Over 40 years I visit Vienna almost annually. Hence I may have visited it over 40 times already. I may be biased, but for me Vienna is the number 1 city destination, especially around Christmas. It has a lot of Old World charm and elegance.
When I checked my Vienna category here, I noticed I had only one post labeled correctly with Vienna, while I have mentioned it in over 30 posts.
So it’s about time to cure the huge omission of not having written about Vienna in detail with tips and so. As one of my travel blogging friends will heading there I’ll rather do it now than later, to be able to help her a bit. Because I have so much material, it certainly will take several posts.
As Vienna has one of the best tourist sites at Wien.info, you should always check it out before you visit Vienna. You can even link through very easily to order theater tickets online or make restaurant reservations via its Search and Book widget at the right.
It may also be an idea to look for free audio/video tours at Itunes. I found this one, but haven’t checked it out yet.

City Airport Train (CAT)The Vienna City Airport Train or CAT

2 Getting There
Traveling by air you’ll most likely arrive at Vienna’s Airport which is located south of the Danube river between the little town Schwechat and the village Fischamend and only approximately 15 miles due east from the city.
From there the best connection with the city center is the City Airport Train (CAT) follow the signs. Traveling with the Cat you’ll end up in the city center and if your hotel is in the city center (roughly in the neighborhood of the Ring), it is somehow easy to reach walking from the CAT city terminal. It is also good to know that you can check your luggage in there for your return flight. Especially handy when you have a late flight back and want to do a bit of last minute shopping. You can check your luggage in in the morning and don’t have to return to your hotel. Before you get on board of the CAT it is maybe handy to buy a public transport pass for several days.

Vienna tram with Christmas decoration at the KarlsplatzEven the trams have Christmas decorations in Vienna

3 Public Transport
Vienna has a tightly knit net of bus and tram lines. As it spreads across the city like a spiderweb, it is not always easy to find the right connections.
Vienna is one of the last cities that has realized a small metro network which means it is fast and efficient. When I’m not using my car I use the metro, or U Bahn in German.

Style Hotel Vienna with Café CentralLeft Café Central, Fiakr in the middle and the entrance of the Style Hotel in Vienna right

4 Hotels
Austrian Hotels are usually very good and Vienna has many good and also more affordable hotels, but my favorite hotel is the Radisson Sas Style hotel. It is right in the center, two steps away from the “Goldene Meile” (the Golden Mile) shopping area of the Kohlmarkt and from the Graben. It is close to the Royal Palace and various theaters and museums. It is opposite Café Central where you can have a better breakfast for less than that in the Hotel. When you are on a shopping spree, you can drop your finds underway while shopping. It is not too big with 75 rooms and the personnel is very friendly. I find it really nice to hear the “clippediclack” of the horse hoofs and their echoes through the streets early in the morning, because one of Vienna’s great tourist attractions, the Viennese Fiakrs or horse carts that do the tourist routes from the Stephans Dom, always come along this hotel on their tours.

Café Landtmann in ViennaLandtmann

Sacher Torte!

Elephant Decorating at Demel ViennaElephant Decorating at Demel Vienna

5 Coffee, Coffee, Coffee and Cake!
Vienna is all about Coffee and Cake. They practically invented the Café and have maintained the old Café traditions throughout. A Konditorei is more of a cake selling shop or pastry shop where they serve coffee and tea and lunch as well. Usually the Konditoreis are less relaxed than the cafés, but usually they offer better quality (the ultimate quality) cakes.
Some of my favorites are:

  • Café Central off course
  • Restaurant Café Landtmann, just opposite the City Hall.
  • Hotel Sacher. It has its own café and on your first visit to the city it is a must to taste their very own world famous Sacher Torte.
  • At Dehmel you should try and find a place in the back (you’ll have to go through a door in the back of the shop with coffee bar) in front of the huge glass separation with the kitchen where you can follow the decorating of the wonderful cakes they make.
  • Oberlaa, Neuer Markt 16, Konditorei & Restaurant is one of our faves as well.
  • In summer you shouldn’t forget to visit the Café in the Gloriette, a pavilion in the Garden of Schloss Schoenbrunn.

More to follow.

Josiah Mackenzie at BTO

Josiah Mackenzie at BTO

It was a busy week on the travel and social media front. First I would like to share with you the keynote of my blogging friend Josiah McKenzie @Hmarketinghelp of Hotel Marketing Strategies. at the Buy Tourism Online (BTO) conference in Florence. It’s an instructive introduction for hoteliers why and how they should be involved in social media.

Update

Originally I’d embedded a great video here, but that sadly disappeared. Hence I’ve embedded Josiah’s slideshow.

Last edited by GJE on March 13, 2012 at 12:57 pm

My Impressions from a Thought Provoking TBCamp10

The TBCamp10 After Party was best

The TBCamp10 After Party was best!

I’ve attended TBCamp10 with my camera that some people envy. They probably don’t know the actual weight of the darn thing when hanging from your shoulder all day.

  1. Darren (of Travel Rants) was able to secure the help of a very nice lady to hand out name tags which were new for the event. Mind you, he had single handedly printed the lot as almost single handedly he has succeeded to create the third edition of this event. Thank you Darren for organizing it again.
  2. What I have missed in preparation of the venue is:
    A) A list of attendants. Darren has given a link to a list that seems having disappeared.
    B) An introduction to the speakers.
    Why is that important to me? Then I’m more able to mind map those who are attending.
    On the other hand this is not so bad because now, as usual, I let my camera is find its own interesting people.
  3. When I entered the venue I was met by a welcoming warm sound wall of conversation. Travel bloggers do relate!
  4. The venue was huge. Approximately 130 to 150 bloggers and PR types and hangers on around and about. Not until after the venue I realized there were many of high profile types. Off course with such a huge group it is not easy to relate to all who I would have liked to relate to.
  5. Amazingly Kevin (of Tnooz) got the posse totally quiet as a good moderator. He introduced the sponsors and the speakers. After that everybody was amazingly quiet during the speeches certainly when taking into consideration how chatty and outspoken bunch travel bloggers usually are.
  6. What also amazed me that 2/3 of the attendants rushed out as soon as the last speaker had stopped. That was at around 9.30 far before the anticipated 11.00 PM closing. These people didn’t grasp the whole idea of the venue: Getting to know each other better irl…..
  7. Being concentrated more on catching the people with my camera, I hardly paid attention to the discussions, but am glad some people published what they said and thankful to be able to read back some tweets.
  8. I have the impression this is a very British event. Although I’m reasonably well versed in the English language, some of the discussions are too fast for me and maybe a bit insiderish… Brits remain Brits, they can discuss in circles and they are masters of the understatement.
  9. Avatars do matter! especially at such venues. If you enter a room full of people you haven’t met irl, it is always helpful to relate a person to their twitter account or their blog. Therefor I’ll illustrate this by giving away prices here for those who are most true to their avatar.
  10. Sadly loads of people were there I would have liked to communicate with…well maybe next time
  11. What I hope will happen is a nice roundup from various people who attended. After Sales service for an event is also very important.
  12. Oh yes, as usual, I got carried away…, before I forget: Why was the event Thought Provoking?
    1. Of all people attending only one raised his hand when asked “Who makes more than UK pnd 1,000.- per month from his blog?”. (I know of some who were not attending among one who was tweeting from her HQ as if she was attending)
    2. Traditional Printed Press is experimenting with paid travel content and proudly announcing they have approximately 100 K paying customers…(but see a former competitor comment below) .
    3. Travel bloggers do relate and I feel at home with them!
    4. Buddy Press is not where it should be…whenever I’ll create a community I’ll be going to use the paid Ning thingy
    5. The after party in the Beduin bar was best…luckily the taxi driver found my personal B&B back for me.
    6. Online communications almost only mobile…a year ago almost unthinkable

Okay publishing it to be fast… Will be fleshing it out to be complete… soon…also as usual:-)…but first uploading the 300 something photos….[update: here they are via Fluidr ]

Check out these:

Last edited by GJE on November 13, 2010 at 00:20 AM