you don"t need to save the crystal for a special day, even water tastes better in a "Fancy Glass"

Sunday, December 24, 2006

in and around the Hofburg in vienna

We arrived in Prague last evening after a really wonderful journey here that included a stop in a wine growing town, a wine tasting and a fabulous local lunch. But there is still so much I have not written about from our time in Vienna, so I am going to keep working forwards even though this was a few days ago.

On the 21st, we spent the morning in and around the Hofburg, which was the downtown palace of the Habsburgs and the Holy Roman Empire. We walked around the area with a local vienese guide Ingred, who told us some of the history of the area and explained the different architectural styles. Then we had a fascinating tour of the Treasury- where they kept the vestments and crown jewels. It was a pretty amazing collection. The jewels and hand stitched robes, gloves, etc were overwhelming, just as was intended when they were used to demonstrated their power and wealth over other visiting royals and politicians. the various Crowns were really quite gorgeous. Ingred was a terrific guide. One of the main features I think of going on a tour is that the guides can give you so much information. She was really wonderful. Very matter of fact and funny.

the photo above shows (from top left) one of the horse and carriage teams that are all over the Hofburg area. I think it is so cute that in cold weather the horses have "ear-socks" the next picture is a view of one of the main gates leading into the hofborg complex, below that is a hand stitched vestment of one of the processional robes, and to the bottom left, a lion sculpture and highly decorated inner gate that went to the building housing the treasurery.

It was a lovely morning, and we had a small lunch on our own at a great traditional cafe near the Sachar called the tirolerhof cafe. (by the way the hofburg is VERY close to the Sachar hotel which has a fantastic location!) For some more background on the world famous Viennese cafe tradition read here. Below the photos show the gorgeous interior, me studying the map of Vienna, my Einspanner (espresso and whipped cream) with Chris' Local beer, and a fantastic sandwhich that we shared that was the speciality of the house. Rye hot sandwich with Ham, local cheese and onions. tasty!

No comments: