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(Un)dress To Impress

(Un)dress To Impress

For retro-themed ambiance, Vienna has few rivals, being somewhat Vintage itself: elegantly decrepit fin-de-siècle decadence still saturates the very walls of the manifold venues presenting themselves. One of them is the Volkstheater’s Rote Bar, home of the burlesque carnival Cirque Rouge, a celebration of vaudeville and cabaret culture taking place every few months. Setting it apart is its dedication to recreating a first-half […]

Trailing the Krampus

Trailing the Krampus

It is cold and dark. It’s November 24, and I have been waiting in the bitter cold behind metallic fences for more than an hour. Many others, both children and adults, wait for the Krampuslauf (Krampus parade) to start. Some are drinking Punsch, and everyone appears excited. I have seen pictures of the Krampus, but […]

Mojito Coast

Mojito Coast

Nestled in a side street just off Kärtnerstraße, the Cuban dance bar El Floridita is an underground haven of alegria y pasión tropical (joy and tropical passion, the motto of its Saturday night dance club), a cavernous, peach-coloured dance hall with long, well stocked bars and an excellent humidor welcoming Vienna’s pan-Latino community and indigenous […]

Into the Great Velvet Yonder

Into the Great Velvet Yonder

To the untrained eye, Tanzcafé Jenseits looks like just another gentlemen’s club, gone bust when the skin trade moved further out of town. Nestled in a side street, just off Mariahilfer Straße, the dusty drapes and black metal door keep prying eyes out and noise in. During business hours, the only indication that anything is […]

Wasted Youth

Wasted Youth

“Waste your youth” (dj, ) is the fitting motto of this monthly tongue-in-cheek event, dedicated to new wave music and its German-language cousin, Neue Deutsche Welle. Conceived as a deliberately cheesy answer to the up-and-coming rave scene in the ‘90s, Iceberg remains both an ironic and defiant statement, combatting mass market beats with synthesizer-fuelled pop. […]

Buddha and the Art of Motorcycle Breakdown

Buddha and the Art of Motorcycle Breakdown

“I’ll meet you at the door,” were my Buddhist friend’s instructions. It was the 60th birthday of Buddhist monk Bhante Seelawansa at Palais Eschenbach in Vienna, so you would have thought he’d show up. I hovered at the entrance, trying to look as if I belonged. Suddenly, one of the hosts approached, with a smile […]

Sunset at MQ

Sunset at MQ

The sun has just set and your Schnitzel and Sommer Spritzer are settling in, revitalising the sparkle in your eyes after a long day, pulling up the corners of your mouth. Now it’s time to move again, scintillate the senses. Time to dance. Time for the MuseumsQuartier. The MQ is not just master paintings and […]

Infiltrating Austro-American Football

Infiltrating Austro-American Football

The parking lot was nearly empty as we approached the Stadion Stadlau for a football game – American football, that is, between the local teams the Danube Dragons against their arch rivals, the Vienna Vikings. Were we in the right place? Where were the “tailgate” parties I had heard so much about, the lavish picnics, […]

Summerstage

Summerstage

It could be said about the Viennese that the one thing they enjoy more than wining and dining with pleasant company would be doing the same outdoors. Even in the dead of winter, they seem to love standing around in the cold, with nothing save a warm mug of something strong. Now, at last, winter is […]

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