Vienna: An Imperial Luncheon Guest

with Nina Slawek

Ursula Pusch - Vienna Airport; Ernst Holzer - Vienna Airport ; Elke Bachner - Vienna Tourist Board; Nicole Lindner - Swarovski; Armando Mendonca - AMPM; Stephanie Bishop - Globus 

When you think of Vienna, what comes to mind? Great coffee. And cake! Great opera. Museums. Mozart. And of course, Balls (with a capital b)! 

Walking through the imperial city, home to 800 years of Hapsburg rule, is like walking through a movie set. Except that, according to Elke Bachner of the Vienna Tourist Board, it’s all very accessible to modern sensibilities.

That was the message at a recent 'Vienna: Now or Never' lunch held at posh George’s restaurant in Toronto. I’m not sure that if I don’t visit now I won’t ever – but, I believe the sentiment being touted is that there is no reason to wait.

Vienna is, we are told, a very open city. As evidenced by the yearly Rainbow Ball or The Wiener Regenbogenball. It is the number one ball for LGBTI community and people travel from all over the globe to attend and dress in magnificently opulent costumes. It is considered one of the most successful balls in all of Austria.

But Vienna isn’t only about waltzing the night away to Strauss’ Blue Danube. Open air concerts for all ages are very popular, attracting up to 1 million youth at one event.

The musical city also provides even younger entertainment in the form of the famous Viennese Boys Choir, which is the oldest choir in the world.

For lovers of bling, Vienna is home to more Swarovski crystal than you can shake a chandelier at. Entire installations are on display at their flagship store where you can spend an afternoon sipping coffee and admiring your reflection in a thousand facets.

Clients interested in exploring the wonders of Wien are invited to review with you the many options offered by the Globus family of brands. As we enjoyed our heavenly halibut, Globus’ Hilary Brown walked us through the variety of offerings – from fully escorted Globus, with centrally located hotels, to value packed Cosmos, independent minded Monograms and Avalon river cruises. Avalon, we were told, is launching a new Avalon Fresh menu offering in cooperation with Vienna’s Wrenkh brothers.

Their claim to fame is that it’s so delicious; you won’t know it’s healthy.

Forgive me, but I think I’ll stick to the sachertorte.

Last, but certainly not least, the Viennese experience can be carried through the entire trip by choosing to fly Austrian, where 10 different types of coffee are served on board.

(will not be published)