Luxury Hotels, Vienna

With the exquisite architecture found throughout Vienna, it’s no secret that you’ll find magnificent luxury hotels sprinkled throughout the city.  Many with a history dating back to the 1800s.

Hotel Sacher

Hotel Sacher… and to think that it all began with dessert!  In 1832, Prince von Metternich asked his apprentice, Franz Sacher, to construct a special dessert.  The outcome was a masterful mix of chocolate, apricot jam, and whipped cream and is known around the world as the Original Sacher-Torte.  Forty-four years later, Franz’s son, Eduard, opens a luxury hotel in the heart of Vienna, rightfully taking on the family surname, Sacher.  Shortly after the last of the Sachers died in 1930, the Gürtler and Siller families took over and restored the beautiful hotel to its original glory.  Throughout WWII, the hotel is taken over by different countries and finally lands back in the hands of its rightful owners.  In 1962, the last Siller died which left the Gürtler family in complete control to the present day.  

“The Sacher Hotel has long been a place where artists, politicians, and personalities meet and mingle. Celebrities from all over the world have been welcomed at the Sacher from its inception until this very day.” 

Georg Gürtler, Owner

It has been a treasured meeting place for many throughout the years such as U.S. President John F. Kennedy, Anna Netrebko, Queen Elizabeth II of England, Sharon Stone, Justin Bieber or Naomi Campbell.  I felt prestigious walking along the same corridors and sipping champagne in the same bars as some of the world’s most renowned!

Hotel Bristol

Another amazing hotel filled with Viennese charm is Hotel Bristol, a Luxury Collection Hotel and party of Marriott Bonvoy.  With its prime real estate next to the Vienna State Opera on Ring Boulevard since 1892, it is a great central location for all the sights Vienna has to offer.  Additionally, its rooms offer some of the best views in Vienna and the rooms are quite the spectacle themselves with their beautiful antiques and modern amenities.  

Within Hotel Bristol is one of my favorite bars in Vienna, The Bristol Bar.  It is the first “American Bar” in Vienna and I love it for its cozy atmosphere (fireplace included) and decor.  The amazing architect, Pierre-Yvess Rochon, stylishly designed the space with chic leopard patterned carpet, friendly wood-paneled walls, and a gentle cognac-colored ceiling while incorporating the Art Deco style of the hotel.  I am not the only person to become infatuated with this watering hole; the walls bear autographed photos of Richard Strauss, Leonard Bernstein, Herbert von Karajan, Rose Kennedy, and Enrico Caruso.

Hotel Imperial

A place designed for a prince, this hotel is dazzling in decor from its immaculate marble to the dangling chandeliers dotting the royal staircase.  It was converted into a hotel in 1873 for Vienna’s World’s Fair. One must try the incredible torte that was created for Emperor Franz Josef, hence the name of the hotel, Imperial.  It’s a secret concoction of marzipan, oranges, and raspberries.  You can find beautiful oil paintings of Franz Josef throughout the hotel.

When visiting Vienna, if you don’t have the luxury to stay in one of these fabulous hotels, at least pop in to marvel at the gorgeous decor and maybe sip on a cocktail.  Cheers to your trip to Vienna!

Antiquing in Vienna

As an interior designer, I absolutely love searching for antiques when traveling!  Vienna and the surrounding countryside did not disappoint in my pursuit for uncommon treasures.  I found numerous items from antlers to chests and I am so excited to present these gems to my clients, maybe even keeping a few for myself.  

You might be thinking how do I get all of these objects back to America?  As I go on these trips for half business half pleasure, I organize for the items to be secured appropriately, packed into a storage container, and shipped to the US.  

Some of the beautiful antiques that I found during this trip were:

  • Antlers. Hundreds of them! From big to small with simple to extremely ornate mounts.  I even found a tray made of antlers.
  • Chests. My favorite was a dazzling Bierdermeier chest with an outstanding wood grain pattern, key holes, and elegantly detailed pulls. 
  • Walking sticks.  Too many to count!  Lightweight to heavy duty. Light to dark in color. Plain to exquisite engravings.

Some of my favorite finds came from an hour outside of Vienna in a town known as St. Polten.  If you love antiquing as much as I do, you will not want to miss this hidden treasure in the Austrian countryside. 

Among one of the oldest auction houses in the world is The Dorotheum Auction House in Vienna. Today, its goal is to put Vienna on the world’s stage as a top auction destination while preserving the heritage that gave it its start. I adored walking and gawking at all the displays!

The early bird catches the worm!  At the crack of dawn every Saturday in Vienna, they have the Naschmarkt.  Some consider it a cult event where the vendors sell antiques, produce, fruit, cheese, flowers, and food from all over the world.  We had a ball searching through all of the stalls locating unique treasures.

Vienna, Austria is an antique lover’s dream so make sure to designate time during your trip for a one of a kind treasure hunt!

Scott Antique Markets: A Designer’s Dream

As a designer, a large part of my job is sourcing furniture and decor for my clients’ designs. I’m always striving to find unique and beautiful pieces, and going antiquing seems to be the best way to guarantee this. Scott Antique Markets is one of my absolute favorite places to source home furnishing and decor.

Why Antique?

There are numerous benefits of choosing to invest in antique pieces.

Quality & Durability: Most antique pieces were handcrafted long ago. They were made by skilled craftsmen with care and precision which is often lost in flat-pack furniture and commercial retail. When someone fabricates a single piece, you know it’s been given more attention than something made by machines on an assembly line. The piece has made its way through history which speaks for itself in terms of quality and durability. When you invest in antique pieces you know that they’ll last you life time. Not only are they physically durable, but antique pieces don’t go out of style. So you can have confidence when buying an antique that the piece will last you a lifetime.

Investment: Antique furniture and decor keeps its value. In some cases, it even increases in value the longer it’s around. If you purchase an antique piece today and later decide you want to change it, selling the piece should be no hard task. You may even make some money from it!

Sustainability: Buying an antique is one of the best forms of sustainability. Rather than sending the piece to a landfill, it gets to live on with you. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, about 9.69 million tons of furniture was taken to landfills in 2015 alone. Choosing to buy antique pieces instantly cuts down your personal contribution to this. Antique pieces are the epitome of the “reuse” in “Reduce, reuse, recycle!”

Individuality: Whether it’s a rug, a chair, a vanity, or a vase, if it’s antique, it’s unique! I take pride in the fact that my designs for my clients are always bespoke, personalised and unique. One of the easiest ways to do this is sourcing antique pieces. Because they’re not mass produced, no one will have the exact same piece as you, bringing a lovely individuality into any design.

Scott Antique Markets: All You Need to Know

The Market only opens once a month, so be sure to plan ahead! The Atlanta Market is opening from February 11-14th, so make sure to book a morning or afternoon off to make it there! If not, they’ll be open again next month. They also have a location in Ohio, which is due to reopen in November of this year. For a full timetable, please visit their website. Be aware that admission is $5, to be paid at the door only. But with the variety and amount of beautiful pieces to browse, it’s worth every penny.

The Scott Antique Markets were started by Don Scott who worked for nearly 20 years buying and selling antiques around the country. He was working as an exhibitor when he decided to create his own Antique show with a large focus on Customer Service. The Scott Antique Market in Atlanta was born and shortly afterward they expanded to open a market in Columbus, Ohio. Having been to the market since I was a young teen, I can confirm how wonderful their customer service is!

I usually take a list from a client of pieces that need to be sourced for their design. The home furnishings are sourced from all over Europe. And while they do sell New Home furnishing, their antiques are definitely my favorite to look at!

Here are some of my favorite pieces I saw last time I was at the market!

Favorite Pieces - Part 1

Favorite Pieces - Part 2

Interested in renovating? We’ll go to the market for you! Head to our services page to see how we can help you create the home of your dreams!

Kelley Astore Interiors

Expert Interior Design & Renovation Services of Every Style.

Where We Work

Northern Virginia, Washington, DC,
and the Greater Washington Area


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