In a trip to Austria this summers, we entered the country from the western side through Innsbruck and travelled via Salzburg to reach the capital city of Vienna, located in the east as our final destination. We booked ourselves a stay in the Ritz Carlton to add some real grandiose and indulgence in the the visit to this imperial city. And Ritz went ahead and made it sweeter by upgrading us to to a junior suite with the club lounge access.
We took a cab from the Central station in Vienna and arrived at the hotel in less than fifteen minutes. Located on the Ring Boulevard, adjacent to Stad park, the hotel is a short walk away from most sights such as Vienna state opera, Imperial palace, city hall, museums and the night life.
As you walk through the door, the sense of history, art and ornate and modern is all around you. Four 19th century imperial palaces (or palais as they are called) were combined to create the sprawling building of Ritz Carlton as it stands today.
At the lobby, the concierge assisted us to the club lounge, located on the seventh floor for a private check-in that is offered to the guests who are booked for club rooms or the suites at the hotel.
The club lounge had a relaxed lounge ambience with lots of options of magazines and newspapers. Although, it was past lunch time when we reached, our lively and helpful personal concierge arranged some light nibbles and we poured ourselves some wine from the wine dispensers in the lounge.
The concierge had some excellent suggestions for opera concerts worth attending, non-touristy Viennese cafes to hop over for a cuppa of Melange coffee and the cake shops that dessert fans simply couldn’t miss on a trip to Vienna.
As we entered our suite, the first feeling we had was a sense of space. As residents of Hong Kong, space becomes one of the top most luxuries and the sprawling suite at Ritz was all that we needed to get into an indulgent and winding-down mode. The junior suite came with its interesting privileges like getting your morning bed tea delivered along with the wake up call. So thoughtful and truly indulgent!
After relaxing for some time, I headed to the spa where I was pre-booked for an Imperial rose ritual. This ninety minutes ritual inspired by empress Elizabeth or “Sissi” and her beloved walks through the Imperial Rose Gardens.
I poured myself some herbal tea and lounged on the steam chair, centering myself to get into a slow and easy pace. As I strolled back to the spa lobby, my therapist was waiting for me in the lobby and escorted me to the beautiful massage suite. We crossed the spa pool on the way and I made a mental note to return to the pool in coming days for some down time.
The Imperial rose ritual started by a gentle body scrub by products from the organic and natural Austrian brand, Susanne Kaufmann. Post a shower after the scrub, a sixty minute hot stone massage followed. I could feel the goodness of the oil seeping into the skin after the exfoliation.
I relaxed in the room for a while before walking back to the lobby. A freshly made cucumber celery smoothie awaited me. Perfect way to round up this deeply relaxing ritual with a healthy and refreshing drink.
With travel fatigue wiped clean out of my body and mind, it was time to head out and enjoy the city. We headed out for an evening of Viennese food and drinks in the buzzy pubs lined up on the sides of the canals.Started the next day with the breakfast at the club lounge. The spread was good and the staff was kind enough to offer healthy options from the kitchen such as chia seeds pudding, special fruits platter and range of gluten free breads.
On the last day of the stay, I joined the yoga class at the Atmosphere Rooftop bar (they organize one every Saturday morning). Practicing Hatha yoga on a sunny morning, overlooking St Stephen’s cathedral, with a diverse yoga community are some of my most grateful and relaxing memories of the trip.
The impeccable service by the hotel staff, the finest amenities on offer and a typical first class Ritz Carlton fashion about everything makes you feel nothing short of royalty yourself in the stay at Ritz Vienna. Our tryst with this imperial and culturally rich city couldn’t have been any more indulgent and royal.
Where : The Ritz-Carlton, Vienna
Schubertring 5-7, Vienna, 1010 Austria
Phone : +43131188