Palais Coburg Residenz, Vienna, AustriaBack to Forum
Our Stay in July 2016, 3 nights/4 days
Since it was my milestone birthday we were looking for a very special hotel in Vienna, Austria.
We had the Sacher and the Palais Coburg Residenz in mind.
The rates were roughly the same. The major difference was that for the same amount of investment we would have a City suite with breakfast included, free minibar and WIFI at the Palais Coburg, while the Sacher “only” offered a Superior room with free WIFI. Both hotels are independently owned and beautiful. In the end the Palais Coburg seemed to be more unique to us, it’s a palace heritage hotel nevertheless, so we decided to have three nights – including my birthday – there in July 2016.
Before our stay we were in contact with the hotel to organize a complimentary tour of the exclusive wine cellar and our dinner reservations at Clementine im Glasshaus at the Palais Coburg.
The e-mails were always answered promptly and felt warm and welcoming at all times.
The palace belonged to the family of Saxe-Coburg, who are related with every major royal household in Europe, and was built on the Braunbastei, a bastion, dating back to the 16th century. Part of the medieval city walls can be still seen at the hotel. The wall is currently under restoration.
The bastion was named after the engineer.
The Renaissance casements of the Braunbastei have been preserved, which is unusual for Vienna, due to the palace being built before the fortifications of the Braunbastei were demolished to make way for the Ringstrasse.
Part of the building was rented out to the Austrian Railway at one time.
The palace was sold by Princess Sarah Aurelia in 1978 to a realtor. Other owners were two banks.
Finally in 1997 it was bought by the POK Puehringer Foundation, the current owner.
The palace was in a decrepit condition. It took three years of planning and three years of renovation and restoration before it opened in new splendor in 2003 as hotel. For a while it was a member of Relais & Chateaux before it changed to Leading Hotels of the World.
The hotel is a magical place and we have very fond memories. It’s difficult to explain, when you haven’t experienced it.
The complete stay was flawless, luxurious and pampering in heartwarming ways.
The staff was the most intuitive we ever encountered so far. It’s very difficult to find the right balance between being professional and warm and to know when the guest needs attention and when to leave him/her in peace.
During our stay we had only pleasant experiences and each member of staff was very kind to us. Besides they managed to be warm and efficient at the same time.
The building itself was in top condition and the internet was very fast too.
The location is just behind the Marriott Hotel Vienna with a ca. 5 minute walk to the Stadtpark, around 10 minutes to the Westbahnhof with access to the CAT for the airport. The Albertina and Stephansplatz are ca. 20 to 30 minutes from the hotel, making it a good base to explore the city in our opinon.
Check in was very pleasant with a choice of drinks as welcome gift. We had a glass of Pol Roger Champagne and Evian water.
During check in we were explained all amenities and given a handwritten card with all our “appointments” within the hotel during our stay.
The check in formalities had been swift and we were accompanied to our suite by Ivan who took our luggage and explained all features to us.
All suites are named after a member of the house of Saxe-Coburg.
The key was interesting. It looked like a medallion or badge and depicted the image of the person the suite was named after and the room number.
It was also needed to open various security doors and to operate the elevators.
Beside high security the hotel is very discreet too.
We had booked a city suite, the entrance category. The size ranges from 54 m2 to 84 m2. We were brought to suite 106 Archduke Josef of Austria (1833 – 1905). He was the husband of Clothilde of Saxe-Coburg, the granddaughter of Ferdinand of Saxe-Coburg, who built the palace.
It was also a duplex and the largest suite in the category [City Suites] on offer.
Of course we had speculated before which suite we would receive, but hadn’t expected this.
It suited our tastes completely in many ways while combining heritage and modernity.
There was a long, curved hallway with a seating area, wooden floors, a wardrobe and a guest toilet, leading towards to the living space.
It could be closed off from the actual suite by doors, so it’s ideal if you schedule business appointments and someone has to wait.
No wonder it is favored by politicians like John Kerry, who stayed here during the Iran nuclear talks. We could even see part of the meeting rooms where the talks had taken place in the hotel.
The suite, a duplex suite was very large, airy and bright with extremely high windows, stretching the whole two storey space and a classic chandelier.
The first part was dedicated to work. It included a classic writing desk, a matching chair and a display cabinet with books about the Palais Coburg, Austria and her history, the sister hotel Park Hotel Vitznau in Switzerland and Austrian music.
In one of the drawers of the writing desk contained all necessary office supplies and an adapter.
There were also Good Life Spirit and a Blanc Pain magazine and a telephone, suitable for deaf or hard of hearing which we found very thoughtful.
The wall mounted large flat screen TV was swiveable and could be watched from the seating area, which included a white sofa, plus sofa chair, a large coffee table, side tables, a credenza with Bose wave radio, DVD player and DVDs of the Vienna Philharmonic New Year concerts from 2005 and 2015, or the writing desk.
The 75 TV channels included regional and international ones like CNN, Bloomberg und Sky Sports 1 to 3 among many others.
The furniture was dark brown and antique. It had beautiful, simple inlays and the carpet was blue and white with a flower print. Again there were wooden floors.
The kitchen at the opposite end could be completely closed off and had every essential needed.
It was white and included plates, cutlery, can and bottle opener, pans, glasses, a microwave, two hotplates, a Nespresso coffee machine, Nespresso capsules selection and Ronnefeldt tea bags and a minibar. Ivan explained the minibar was complementary and all alcoholic beverages were included too. Again the content of the minibar was comprehensive. It included six different Pago juices, Evian and Voesslauer mineral water, Fever Tree Tonic, Schweppes, Trumer Pils, Gruener Veltiner and Wiener Trilogie wines and different flavored schnapps (plum, apricot and Williams Christ pear).
More welcome gifts and a handwritten note from the general manager including a full-sized bottle of Pol Roger Champagne, fruits, chocolates and a brownie were waiting for us. They were replenished daily.
A substantial staircase was leading up to the elegant bedroom. From there you could overlook the living area.
There was a luggage rack, a bureau, a bench in front of the king sized bed and another flat screen TV. The color scheme was dominantly blue. There was a carpet as well and a door led to the large polished marble bath room.
It included two wardrobes, one with safe, a separate room for the toilet and bidet, double sinks, an unusual bathtub/shower combination, a weighing scale, chair and larger than usually sized Acqua di Parma amenities. All the frames and bathroom fixtures were golden. It fitted the heritage ambience and wasn’t ostentatious in our opinion.
Artwork throughout the suite was of the Archduke Josef of Austria incl. portrait photographs and the Palais Coburg.
The whole room was comfortable and invited for long stays due to it feeling residential and lots of storage space.
The bed allowed for a restful sleep and turn down was provided every night with Evian water and Valrhona chocolates.
Views were over the building next door in the back of the hotel.
The hotel has also 24 hour in room dining – the menu is small, but good quality and we used it once during our stay, a spa with swimming pool and a terrace, the Coburg Restaurant by Silvio Nichol, who holds two Michelin stars, and as mentioned above Clementine im Glasshaus for all day dining.
Our in room dinner included one hot chocolate, two fresh pasta with basil pine nuts and Parmesan and one strawberry, quark, sour milk and almond and one chocolate with milk, banana and hazelnut dessert. It cost 75 Euro (ca. 80.70 USD).
Picnics, tours and anything else you might want can be organized by the concierge.
On the same day we arrived we asked if we could see the Prunkraeume or the State Rooms.
They are used for meetings, banquets and celebrations, so they are not always accessible. The rooms are magnificent and very well worth visiting. My favorite was the Yellow Room. In the Green Room portraits of famous members of the Saxe-Coburgs can be admired. One of them depicted Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom.
Ivan told us that the State Rooms were going to be used in the future for brunch, so they were going to be made more accessible to the paying public. I could easily imagine what it would look like in the future. I didn’t have problems conjuring up the past either in these very special surroundings.
Doors leading to the terrace gave great views over the city, the small garden and Clementine im Glasshaus.
The State Room staircase was very beautiful and grand too.
Some parts of the public spaces have a medieval feel with dark wooden furniture and accordingly printed fabrics which matched the style and atmosphere perfectly at every turn.
A family tree of the Saxe-Coburg can be found near the elevators. At the time we were there it wasn’t completely updated. For example Prince William was mentioned on it, but not his marriage to Kate Middleton or the birth of their two children. We guess, updating needs a little time and will done on occasion.
On the day of my birthday I received three birthday cakes/brownies during the day, which was a first. All members of staff were aware it was my big day and I was congratulated by everyone, I encountered, which hasn’t happened before in such a comprehensive manner. It was wonderful and again heartwarming. I felt special and welcomed at all times, a landmark birthday in a landmark heritage palace hotel.
There was also a personalized birthday card on our Suite.
We had breakfast every morning and twice dinner at Clementine im Glasshaus. A review will follow in due time.
We enjoyed strolling through the garden when it was accessible. As mentioned above it’s not very large, but perfectly manicured and has an understated water feature. It gives you the chance to admire the palace’s façade as well.
The Palais Coburg is nicknamed the asparagus castle. The columns of the neoclassical building reminded the Viennese about asparagus stalks, hence the name.
On my birthday we could also visit the wonderful wine cellar, which some parts date back to the 12th century, and were given a tour by the sommelier. We started off with a glass of Pol Roger Champagne at the first room. Then the tour began for real. It was a treasure trove for wine lovers. Unfortunately we couldn’t go into the Champagne cellar due to it being renovated at the time. The hotel has a large collection of rare Dom Perignon vintages.
The cellar is divided into different sections and includes one dedicated to Spanish, Portuguese and New World wines including some rare bottles of Robert Mondavi, a European section including Austrian and Bulgarian wines and a wide selection of rare dessert wines like Tokaj, wine from the Austrian producer Kracher and ice wine from the Czech Republic.
The French cellar holds Mouton Rothschild and Petrus and of course other wines.
One cachet of Mouton Rothschild was bought at a charity auction in New York for 1 Million Euro.
The largest bottle in the collection contains 27 l and we were explained that there is specific machinery available to handle opening the bottle and filling glasses. It is suitable for a party of ca. 60 persons.
Other bottles contain 6 l.
The most expensive single bottle on offer/view is valued at ca. 120.000 Euro.
Another, very special collection, is the Chateau D’Yquem. It is one of the rarest in the world and celebrates 4 centuries of this very special wine and winery.
Some bottles are very old and easily identifiable by the darker color of the wine.
Near the Chateau D’Yquem cellar a quote about wine in Arabic by Suleiman the Magnificent is inscribed in red lightning on the floor. He is infamous for the siege of Vienna in the 16th century.
It was really fascinating and we learned a lot.
Unfortunately check out approached way too quick. We were a bit sad to leave, since our stay had been so pampering.
Check out was efficient and again very warm. Organizing a taxi to bring us to the Hauptbahnhof for our train wasn’t an issue at all. We even received a little bag with goodies (water, apples, Manner wafers and Mozartkugeln) for the journey to Innsbruck.
Even after checkout we hadn’t been forgotten and received another card at our return to Dublin with a short note from the manager, hoping our stay had been a good one and that we had arrived back home safely. It was a thoughtful touch and we appreciated it.
There is no doubt we would return in our future to the Palais Coburg Residence when celebrating something special, since the history speaks to us, the staff is gracious and you are really in the lap of luxury which incl. heritage architecture and modern luxurious interiors and beautiful/memorable service standards of the highest caliber befitting a “Leading Hotel of the World”. Kudo to the Palais Coburg Residenz and sincere thanks for the beautiful hospitality and attention rendered towards both of us.
Please see/visit our uploads/memories on Flickr about our stay at the Palais Coburg Residenz, Vienna, Austria, July 2016:
Would we recommend this beautiful Heritage Palace Hotel to a friend? YES!
Would we want to stay at this beautiful Heritage Palace Hotel in our future? YES!13 Mar 2017
Correction for our above review as follows in regards to the access of the hotel:
The location is just behind the Marriott Hotel Vienna with a ca. 5 minute walk to the Stadtpark, around 10 minutes to the Wien Mitte/Landstrasse Bahnhof with access to the CAT train for the airport.
Cheers & Safe Travels.13 Mar 2017