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At Jean Nouvel’s New Sofitel Hotel: Pride goeth…

The top floor of the new Sofitel across from Schwedenplatz seems to hang from heaven. A vast back-lit ceiling floats above the all-glass walls, silhouetting tiny people seated at tables. It had been beckoning me for months. The hotel itself, a pile of trapezoidal black shapes slightly askew as if cut by a huge knife, […]

Urbanauts: The Real Boutique Hotel

In the strict sense of the word, a boutique is one of a kind. It attracts customers from afar with unique designs and local expertise. Yet, few have taken the term “boutique hotel” quite as literally as Theresia Kohlmayr, Jonathan Lutter and Christian Knapp. The three architects are turning small shops into beautifully designed guest […]

After Dark: On the Roof

Launching a new upscale hotel in the tourist haven that is Vienna is undoubtedly a daunting prospect. Still, my interest was piqued upon hearing about a new “25 Hours”  design hotel opening up next to the Volkstheater, promoting a rooftop bar with a magnificent view of the city. This was the fifth and newest branch […]

Fighting Words

His charm offensive had hit home in both senses long before Jack Kendrick actually touched base with friends and fans in Vienna: He had returned home of the 1980s once again, his favorite European city after Stockholm, to read from his Selected Poetry (2008).  He had just hit a literary home run with his new […]

Bumming in Style

Bumming in Style

Many recall our first experience at a youth hostel: Crowded rooms, dirty halls and one dingy toilet for what seemed like the entire Light Cavalry was what I faced the first time I ventured into the heart of Paris. My first hostel visit made me feel like a tramp, to be frank, without the romance. […]

Dining with Wolfgang Puck

Dining with Wolfgang Puck

“The press conference is on the second floor in the ‘Rosa Festsaal’”, said the friendly young woman in hotel uniform at the reception. It was 11.30 a.m. on a weekday morning when I crossed the imposing entrance hall in the Radisson SAS Palais Hotel on Parkring and proceeded to the elevator. The second floor ballroom […]

Best Reception

Best Reception

Holidays matter. Time away and time shared is precious, and when we arrive, we expect everything to be perfect. In the holiday of our dreams, we are met at the door by a liveried valet who takes our bags and ushers us effortlessly to the front desk where we are greeted by an attractive, smiling […]

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