Portrait: Johannes Brahms, composer, pianist, and conductor of the Romantic period

25 March 2020 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: Hamburg, Portrait

Johannes Brahms in 1889 - New York Public Library - C. Brasch

Johannes Brahms in 1889 – New York Public Library – C. Brasch

Johannes Brahms was a German composer, pianist, and conductor of the Romantic period. Born in Hamburg into a Lutheran family, Brahms spent much of his professional life in Vienna. His reputation and status as a composer are such that he is sometimes grouped with Johann Sebastian Bach and Ludwig van Beethoven as one of the “Three Bs” of music, a comment originally made by the nineteenth-century conductor Hans von Bülow.   read more…

Portrait: The novelist and short-story writer Franz Kafka

26 February 2020 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: Portrait

Franz Kafka in 1923 © Archiv Frans Wagenbach

Franz Kafka in 1923 © Archiv Frans Wagenbach

Franz Kafka was a German-speaking Bohemian novelist and short-story writer, widely regarded as one of the major figures of 20th-century literature. His work, which fuses elements of realism and the fantastic, typically features isolated protagonists facing bizarre or surrealistic predicaments and incomprehensible socio-bureaucratic powers, and has been interpreted as exploring themes of alienation, existential anxiety, guilt, and absurdity. His best known works include Die Verwandlung (The Metamorphosis), Der Process (The Trial), and Das Schloss (The Castle). The term Kafkaesque has entered the English language to describe situations like those found in his writing.   read more…

Hotel Sacher in Vienna

17 February 2020 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Hotels

© Thomas Ledl/cc-by-sa-3.0

© Thomas Ledl/cc-by-sa-3.0

The Hotel Sacher is a five-star hotel located in the Innere Stadt first district of Vienna, Austria, facing the Vienna State Opera. It is famous for the specialty of the house, the Sachertorte, a chocolate cake with apricot filling. There is also an art gallery in the hotel with works from the 19th century. The hotel is built near the former residence of Antonio Vivaldi. Hotel Sacher is a member of The Leading Hotels of the World.   read more…

Lake Wörth in Austria

11 December 2019 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General

MS Klagenfurt © Johann Jaritz/cc-by-sa-3.0-at

MS Klagenfurt © Johann Jaritz/cc-by-sa-3.0-at

Wörthersee is a lake in the southern Austrian state of Carinthia. The popular bathing lake is a main tourist destination in summer. The northern shore is densely built up with the main resort towns of Krumpendorf, Pörtschach, and Velden. The Süd Autobahn motorway and a railway mainline occupy the narrow space between the steep hills and the shore. The southern shore is quieter and less developed.   read more…

Portrait: The economist and philosopher Friedrich August von Hayek

20 February 2019 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: Portrait

Friedrich August von Hayek, 1981 © flickr.com - LSE Library

Friedrich August von Hayek, 1981 © flickr.com – LSE Library

Friedrich August von Hayek (CH FBA), often referred to by his initials F. A. Hayek, was an Austrian economist and philosopher best known for his defense of classical liberalism. Hayek shared the 1974 Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences with Gunnar Myrdal for his “pioneering work in the theory of money and economic fluctuations and […] penetrating analysis of the interdependence of economic, social and institutional phenomena”. Hayek was also a major social theorist and political philosopher of the 20th century and his account of how changing prices communicate information that helps individuals co-ordinate their plans is widely regarded as an important achievement in economics, leading to his Nobel Prize.   read more…

Hofburg, Vienna’s Imperial Palace

25 January 2019 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Museums, Exhibitions, Palaces, Castles, Manors, Parks

Hall of Festivities during a concert of the Vienna Hofburg Orchestra © Wiener Hofburg Orchester/cc-by-sa-3.0

Hall of Festivities during a concert of the Vienna Hofburg Orchestra © Wiener Hofburg Orchester/cc-by-sa-3.0

The Hofburg is the former principal imperial palace of the Habsburg dynasty rulers and today serves as the official residence and workplace of the President of Austria. It is located in the center of Vienna and was built in the 13th century and expanded several times afterwards. It also served as the imperial winter residence, as Schönbrunn Palace was the summer residence.   read more…

Burgtheater in Vienna

2 January 2019 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Opera Houses, Theaters, Libraries

© Anna Saini/cc-by-sa-4.0

© Anna Saini/cc-by-sa-4.0

The Burgtheater (english: (Imperial) Court Theatre), originally known as K.K. Theater an der Burg, then until 1918 as the K.K. Hofburgtheater, is the Austrian National Theatre in Vienna and one of the most important German language theatres in the world. The Burgtheater was created in 1741 and has become known as “die Burg” by the Viennese population; its theatre company of more or less regular members has created a traditional style and speech typical of Burgtheater performances.   read more…

The Prater in Vienna

21 March 2018 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Palaces, Castles, Manors, Parks

Prater und Stuwerviertel © flickr.com - flightlog/cc-by-2.0

Prater und Stuwerviertel © flickr.com – flightlog/cc-by-2.0

The Prater is a large public park in Vienna‘s 2nd district (Leopoldstadt). The Wurstelprater amusement park, often simply called “Prater”, lies in one corner of the Wiener Prater and includes the Wiener Riesenrad Ferris wheel. The area that makes up the modern Prater was first mentioned in 1162, when Emperor Friedrich I gave the land to a noble family called de Prato. The word “Prater” was first used in 1403, originally referring to a small island in the Danube north of Freudenau, but was gradually extended to mean the neighbouring areas as well. The land changed hands frequently until it was bought by Emperor Maximilian II in 1560 to be a hunting ground. To deal with the problem of poachers, Emperor Rudolf II forbade entry to the Prater. On April 7, 1766, Emperor Joseph II declared the Prater to be free for public enjoyment, and allowed the establishment of coffee-houses and cafés, which led to the beginnings of the Wurstelprater. Throughout this time, hunting continued to take place in the Prater, ending only in 1920.   read more…

The Palais Coburg in Vienna

25 December 2017 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Hotels, Palaces, Castles, Manors, Parks

© Diana Ringo/cc-by-sa-3.0-at

© Diana Ringo/cc-by-sa-3.0-at

Palais Coburg, also known as Palais Saxe-Coburg, is a palace in Vienna. It was owned by the Kohary branch of the House of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha.   read more…

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