Austria's palaces

If you think visiting a palace means plugging in to an audio-tour, then you haven’t been to Austria. At this country's stately homes and former imperial lodgings, you can learn about falconing, listen to concerts, admire art and encounter orang-utans. If even that is too much effort, why not just retire to a palace for a glass of wine or a good night’s sleep?  

 

Hotel Erzherzog Johann

Right in the heart of Graz, Austria’s second largest city, you can stay in one of the popular Imperial Rooms of this former palace. The very traditional Hotel Erzherzog Johann is located in a former Baroque Palais only a stone’s throw away from the city’s main square. 

Back in the 16th century, this establishment was already the largest inn within the city walls of Graz. 
In the Baroque era of the 18th century, it developed into a grandiose city palace with spacious apartments, state rooms, and a chapel. From that era came the magnificent wrought-iron metalwork of the inner courtyard, which has remained unchanged to this day.

This glass-roofed inner courtyard is unique in its own way, the heart of the hotel, both physically and gastronomically: The cafe-restaurant "Wintergarten" offers modern cuisine with strong local influences, as well as delicious homemade pastries.  

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Coburg Palace

The Palais Coburg in the heart of Vienna has been restored to its original splendor and now houses a most luxurious all-suite hotel, a gourmet restaurant and a collection of rare wines that seeks international comparison. On your tour of the six unique and stunningly designed wine cellars, you will discover more than 60,000 bottles of valuable wine spanning four centuries.

Numerous rare wines from which only a few bottles exist, or perhaps even only found in Palais Coburg, rest here. Among the treasures of the collection of Palais Coburg is a bottle of what is probably the world’s oldest and still drinkable bottle of wine and a collection of 100 vintages of Château d’Yquem. The New World cellar resembles the bulk of a wooden ship while the Champagne cellar is housed in the deepest coldest part of the Palace where the ice blocks were once stored. Your tour concludes with an educational tasting of seven exquisite Austrian wine specialties with the sommelier of the house.

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Schönbrun Palace

Long before the lions came, the 'lions' of the Austrian Empire inhabited this vast palace and relaxed in its grounds. Founded on July 31st, 1752, the Vienna Zoo at Schönbrunn Palace was originally reserved only for Habsburg family members.

Later on, this exotic animal menagerie opened its doors to the public, granted they were “dressed properly”.
 
Today, the longest standing zoo to date is one of the highest ranking and most modern in the world. In 2009 and 2010, it was voted Europe’s best zoo.

More than 500 animal species live on Schönbrunn’s grounds: Siberian tigers, hippos, one-horned rhinoceroses, and pandas, just to name a few. Experience the tropical wildlife, foliage, and thunderstorms that simulate a real Southeast Asian rainforest in the Rainforest House. The South American section is landscaped just like the continent’s pampas, with anteaters and capybaras roaming and enjoying their habitat. In the ORANG.erie, learn about this endangered species and watch fun-loving orangutans swing and play.
 

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