A Travellerspoint blog

1st half of July 2013

sunny 25 °C

Lot of PAINTING.
Plain air, watercolors. In the morning, in day, in night.
With adventures of all sort.
Will show it in separate post, but meantime you may take a look in our FB profile, it's updated at daily base. Also we became kind of international cloud (community), people who love and interested in arts. Many of them are wonderful artists themselves, there are also photographers, art-funs and just friends.
It aslo combined with supply of art-materials, which is fun itself!
It's mid-July, and, actually, except of painting we didnt do much. It takes all time and energy, but gives back a wonderful feeling and wish to do more.

Yesterday in sunset, painting on the shore of Danube, we have seen a beaver - at distance of hand-touch. Swans, ducks and many other birds here, and butterflies. Rabbit came to the flowerbed against the main entrance to the building. Yes, ANIMAL life!

No CULTURAL LIFE to report, sorry :-)
Except of half-day in Arsenal - not the 1st time, but very interesting collection of things related to all wars, Austria was involved. My main interest WW1 was closed for renovation. How pity!
At coming weekend we are invited to B-Day party of friend in their summer house in the village. Will go for sure!

............ Will update photos later ..............

Posted by vanessa 01:34 Archived in Austria Tagged art painting july arsenal plain-air Comments (0)

What is new in 2013?

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green lattice near the famous Anker Clock

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yellow watermelon

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New design of passage in 1st district - loved it!

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oh, yes, St Stephan received a new (renovated) roof!

Posted by vanessa 11:24 Archived in Austria Tagged new Comments (0)

Fashion report of summer 2013

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glamour, definitely

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Think! Think!
Think about shoes - on photos below

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Time for coffee - always.
Can you see golden frogs below?

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Louis Vuitton, of course

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DESIGUAL - as usual, is a great place for inspiration.

Posted by vanessa 10:18 Archived in Austria Tagged shopping 2013 Comments (0)

June 2013

the highlights

sunny 22 °C

VIENNA IN JUNE (2013)
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Fabulous weather in Vienna in June!
Linden is blossoming with dizzying fragrant, flower covers and fresh-green all around.

In early June, the Danube (river) poured - and there was a serious flood. But they are reparing and washing the lines near water, taking out the trees, brought from Germany (?) by the river. It is getting shiny once again.

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FESTIVALs

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RAIBOW PARADE
at June 15th on Ringstrasse (will therefore be closed to traffic).
From Heldenplatz at 2.00 pm against the flow of traffic (!) around the entire ring.

Vienna Jazz Festival from June 17th to July 10th

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Free Open-Air Popfest at Karsplatz
Donauinselfest 21-23/06

MUSIC & STAGE

WIENER STAATSOPER (OPERA)
Already couple of years, Vienna’s leading opera stage shows live performances on 50 m² LED video screen on the square in front of the Opera House. Free, of course.
But nothing as good as going to performance.
Here are spots in June 2013:
" Il barbiere di Siviglia " , which we unfortunately missed at 14/06,

the ballet "Don Quixote" by Rudolf Nurejew, Marius Petipa - only in this ending season.

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"Don Quixote" was absolutely magic, outstanding, brilliant! It was such a delicious pleasure of colors and music and dance, and beautiful costumes, scenography and orcheography, that difficult even describe.

Then, Richard Wagner is 200 y.o. this year so "Die Walküre" (16 & 23/06) and "Tristan und Isolde" (18,22,26 & 30/06)
We went to hear "Tristan und Isolde" not in the theatre, but with this live-video out of Opera House.
With all respect to Wagner.. gosh.. it's soooooo long (and boring). How good that we didn't take tickets to the performance. Do you imagine about 5 hours of opera in German? Plus almost nothing happen, oversized Tristan sitting/staying/or lying in dramatic poses and sometimes he is singing too. But tomorrow (19/06) we hope to take a "Don Quixote". There are zero tickets available, we hope to take standing places. P.S. actually we did, see above <<<

"Capriccio" by Strauss 20,24 & 27/06 ... oh my God, what to choose?
Of course "Roméo et Juliette" in June 21th, 25th and 28th but Conductor is Plácido Domingo (!)

"Roméo et Juliette" was weird. Opera runs in French, scenography was kind of "modern", costumes and decorations minimal, again with elements of modern life (Romeo in jeans didn't fit my expectations). Juliette had a wonderful voice, but looked and acted not like medieval teenager from Verona, it was more alike soup-opera. And, it appeared that the main point was Placido Domingo - great singer... not a conductor. Public was so muc enthusiastic about him that almost forgot about Roméo et Juliette. Still.. :-) Wien Staatsoper - it's so awsome! It's always pleasure, always!

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and finally Nurejew Gala 2013 29/06
to die, trying to make decision!

and then, something unusual will be shown on huge display on Rathausplatz: (29/06). Rolando Villazón's adaptation of the Donizetti opera "L'Elisir d'Amore in the Wild West" (2012) - he sings the part of Nemorino and also directs.

ART
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!!! Bosch-Bruegel-Rubens-Rembrandt in ALBERTINA till 30/06 only + few interesting exhibitions
and other art-events I didnt even checked up, will do it in next days - feel need to hurry, because it's June 15th already tomorrow!

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We are painting (almost) daily. This summer is dedicated to prolonged watercolor plainair. All this is pretty much updated in our web-gallery and on FB (search for "VA Stashinski"). It takes most of our time, but that what we planned and wanted.

SPORTs

F1 on TV, as usual. Andre always up to, it's one of his very much facorite things.
Also Red Bull air-parade is in Austria this weekend (29-30/06), but it's not in Vienna, so we are going to see it on TV.
Not possible to catch more then you r able to. Our rollerblading is minor, hope to increase it in July. And that's because of few reasons. 1st of all it was a serious flood, which distroyed parts of "our island", it's getting better each day, but there are still lot of mess and river silt everywhere . Water was about 3m up. The second reason is instable weather - it was too hot, it was cold and rainy after. End of June is getting fine weather, but wind is agressive and it makes our sport activities difficult.

EVERYHING ELSE

And there are more of small events, nice meetings and various tasks.
We collected linden blossom for upcoming winter. Gosh, how it flavors, how it flavors, you are moving in honey cloud, it's alike being a bee!

Last weekend seen Nina & Franz and cats. Love to go there, love to be with them.
Spent nice time with Angelika and Gabriel

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Don't be shocked, Gabriel is a pirat!
;-)

FOOD & DRINK
as usual, we cook and we trying new tastes.
We addapted Aperol - so popular in Europe, with Prosecco and Prosecco alone is wonderful too!

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If you doubt what you see on the last picture - it's not pineapple, but yellow (!!!) watermelon

Last year we discovered and loved Gruner Veltliner - wonderful white wine from Niederosterreich.

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Fiaker: Named after horse-and-carriages, the Fiaker is a rather not-so-common drink of coffee with a shot of Austrian rum and whipped cream.

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Coffee in Vienna is always served with glass of water aside. Sometimes with another "additions" and spicies

Posted by vanessa 06:36 Archived in Austria Tagged vienna june fun music festival Comments (0)

Sky of Austria

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Posted by vanessa 08:04 Archived in Austria Tagged sky austira Comments (0)

Zum trinken und zum essen

Drink and food in Vienna- Recomendations

0 °C

Zum trinken und zum essen (Drink and eat in Vienna)-
There are places where I was eating and/or drinking personally,
and this link to "Vienna food and drink guide" with description and reccommendations of others.

>>> GOURMET:

  • JULIUS MEINL

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Julius Meinl am Graben, culinary epicentre of Austria's gourmets and connoisseurs. Three floors of the finest ingredients and materials from all over the world. Meinl is ultimative Viennise delicatessen shop, but it also: cafe, wein-bar, restaurant, sushi-bar and even "take away".

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Meinl offers 35 (!!!) different ways to drink coffee

>>> KAFFEHAUSES:

  • CAFE CENTRAL

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Address: Palais Ferstel at Herrengasse 14
It may be a tourist trap, but it's worth being ensnared by the Central at least once. The café was opened in 1860, and in the late 19th century it became a key meeting place of the Viennese intellectuals. Here were killing thir time: Theodor Herzl, Alfred Adler, Anton Kuh, Adolf Loos, Josip Broz Tito, Sigmund Freud, Adolf Hitler, Vladimir Lenin, Leon Trotsky and many others.
I liked this story: Victor Adler objected to Count Berchtold, foreign minister of Austria-Hungary, that war would provoke revolution in Russia, even if not in the Habsburg monarchy, he replied: "And who will lead this revolution? Perhaps Mr. Bronstein (Leon Trotsky) sitting over there at the Cafe Central?"
Live piano music 17-22PM.

  • GERSTNER

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Gerstner at Kärntner Strasse is one of my favorites cafehouses and absolutely the best for strudel!

  • LE MOËT

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Café Le Moet at Opernring 13, in same building where hotel Le Meridien. Modern and very stylish cafe. It's outstanding interior design changed every few months, so you always find a new concept. Cafe works: 6:30am-20pm. Go inside to see the bar (and the restroom which is quite impressive!) and enter into Le Meridien (from hall or via café) - to see interiors of hotel.

  • CAFE PRUCKEL

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Café Prückel is located near Stadtpark, MAK and U3 tube station.
Typical The Viennese café (Wiener Kaffeehaus), 100 y.o. with the original 1950th interior.

  • TCHIBO - EDUSCHO

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To buy fresh-ground coffee or coffee-beans, or just to grab cup of coffee (not for style but for coffee-injection) go to Tchibo (Eduscho). There are many branches all around, they normally open 9-19, but some (for example in train station) may be open also unconventional hours.
In Tchibo you will find not only extensive selection of coffee brands and the freshest coffee, but piece of strudle - if you are up to, coffee-related items and variety of not-coffee-related items of good quality: from bra and umbrella to table lamp and jogging dog stroller. It a bit remembers IKEA brunch of petite size.
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>>> FOR STRUDEL GO TO:

  • GERSTNER

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Gerstner at Kärntner Strasse 21 is my absolute favorite for strudels! It's typical Vieneese Cafehouse which serves good choice of coffee, variety of astonishing cakes and sweets and quality light meals, but strudel is outstanding here!
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>>> FOR ICE_CREAM GO TO:

  • ZANONI & ZANONI GELATERIA

1, Am Lugeck (just down Rotenturmstrasse from Schwedenplatz towards the Stephansdom)
http://www.zanoni.co.at/
Actually it is a net of brunches, so you can try also other places. What is nice - first you drink and eat (there r also shnitzel there, but it's rather silly!), served with a waiter - and then, when you r done, you come to pay at the entrance into building. I guess sometime people also leave with no paying, but they still prefer to trust their customers. At general, Austrians prefer to trust to each other and normally they never erase someone's expectations of their straightness.

  • There are two ice-cremerias nearby in SwedenPlatz. Local people say there are the best. I tried both, but didn't decide which one is better. Also Julius Meinl am Graben (see in "gourmet" above) sales ice-cream - even it's a famous brand, but I found it just cold n sweet - not much more then it.

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Lepantos 1, Ballgasse 4;
Opening hours: Mo 2:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m., Tue – Sat. noon – 8:00 p.m. , Sun 2:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.;
The new (2012) Lepantos ice-cream shop is opened in 1st district. There are few other brands - just next door, but only here you may see the constant ppl in line for ice-cream.
Take a look in Irene's Vienna for more details.
You can reach the place coming from Stephan. Nearby to Loos "American Bar" and my favorite "Gerstner".

  • EIS GREISSLER

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Rotenturmstraße 14
http://www.eis-greissler.at/
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>>> FOR VIENNESE SHNITZEL GO TO:
... not that schnitzel was not-perfect or I have eat it not enough, but I didn't success to choose my favorite place(s) for schnitzel. Perhaps I need more time to choose? The next year may be?
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>>> FOR DINNER GO TO:

  • CAFE-RESTAURANT VIENNE

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Cafe-restaurant Vienne (since 1829).
Address: Fleischmarkt 20, tel 431–5127928.
While you are coming from Schweden-platz - go upstairs (near Italian gelateria) to Fleischmarkt Street. There is beautiful Medieval Greek church, renovated in 18 cent and near the church is a very good restaurant.
But I want you continue some steps by same street and have your dinner in "Vienne" where great traditional Viennese cuisine and real European atmosphere. After 7:30PM live music (good!).

  • PLACHUTTA

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www.plachutta.at
Address: Wollzeile 38 and/or few others, look in web site.
It's world-famous and mentioned in every tourist guide - Plachutta symbolises all the best of typical Viennese cuisine. It's so famous that doesnt need my reccomendations, but need some whitening from being a tourist attraction. First of all Plachutta is not only for tourists, but also for locals. Viennies families come here to celebrate, business ppl (and dates) to make impression on potential partner, others because they can do (Plachutta is pricely). Definately it's a brand, but even being so much known they didn't get spoiled, keeping exceptional cooking and the very perfect service.
If you there - try Tafelspitz (boiled beef). Tenderest veal (who grew up in the alpine meadows, as stated in the menu), immersed in a fragrant broth, is fabulously delicious. The meat served in a gleaming copper pans /to keep it warm/; the waiter pours extra portions when you finished. Other meals are fabulous too. Actually there are masterpieces, you come there to enjoy, not to get stuffed. But no worries, portions are large enough for every appetite. Also wine menu done professionaly - you can ask your waiter for advice which wine to take with your meal.

  • FREIRAUM

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Freiraum- bar, cafe, restaurant at mariahilfer 117. Excellent choice for whatever reason. AC !

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>>> FOR UNUSUAL GO TO:

  • CAFE NEKO

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Blumenstockgasse on the corner with Balgasse, near "Lepantos" (Beetroot Sorbet).
Open daily 10:00-20:00
Cafe Neko is the cat cafe, where you can have drinks while playing with cats. For pictures of the cat cafe go here.

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>>> TO EXPLORE THE SUPERMARKET(s)

Except of eating/drinking out you may celebrate the life with self-made meal. When in Vienna you can have delicious lunch or dinner even not being a great cook.

  • TO DRINK

WINE
Variety of European wines is amazing and prices are very good. I usually stay tight to French wines, and the second choice will be Italian, but I found many of Austrian wines really great.

My 2012 discovery is Grüner Veltliner by family Steininger.
The Steininger winery is especially known for their delicious sparkling wines.

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Grüner Veltliner is really soooooo good!

BEER
A lot of beer of many kinds and impressive beer-culture.
I am not good in beer, but Andre is. Here is his recommendations: Stiegl, Puntigamer and Zwettler Zwickl.

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STURM
And, oh, yea.. S T U R M in September!

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  • TO EAT

CHEESE
I luv cheese. Very much so! Being a cheese-fan, I am familiar with range of around-cheese production: cheese-boxes/ - plates/ - covers/ - knives. From all knives I ever expirienced this old (I think at least 50 y.o.) one is my favorite.

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Chanterelles from forest, buckets of appricots (local product), many great wines and delicious truffle tortellini and much much more...

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Posted by vanessa 21:15 Archived in Austria Tagged food drink ice meat coffee cafe cheese ice-cream Comments (1)

Doors and windows - collection of 2012

My treasures

IN VIENNA
This window with a bear is my favorite of Vienna 2012.

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1st district
It's hard to believe that I can find something "new" in the 1st district, but at fact I do!

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Walking through 18th and 9th districts
These districts are lying nearby. It sounds a bit confusing until you see the map of districts of Vienna and understand its logic. 23 districts of Vienna spiral out from the city center (1st district) in a clockwise manner. You can find the very clean explanation here.

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The 9th district, that lies inside the ring, I know better. 18th district - Währing, lies in on the edge of the Vienna Woods. Währing is known today as one of Vienna’s wealthy districts, along with neighbouring Döbling and Hietzing. Konstantin lives there now, you can see more photos of Wahring in the day when we visited him, and also Türkenschanz Park belongs to there.

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IN SEMMERING
Architecture of Semmering is cute and organic to the landscape. Mini-collection of photos here is quite random, because the real pride of Semmering is not houses but the 42 km long Semmering Railway. It climbs through alpine pass, at an elevation of 2,930 feet (898 meters), between Gloggnitz and Mürzzuschlag in southeastern Austria. Designed in 1843 and built between 1848-54, it is still in use. Awsome!

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Panhans Grand Hotel (on the photos above) was opened in 1888 by Vinzenz Panhans - the name of hotel comes from family-name of this Vinzenz, who, it said, was the legendary personality. Then the Viennese society discovers the Semmering. The train journey along steep rock faces, over staggering viaducts and galleries to the luxurious hotels becomes a spectacular experience. Oskar Kokoschka, Karl Kraus, Adolf Loos, Stefan Zweig and many others find their artistic inspirations in Semmering... etc.

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You can see more of Semmering in my post from summer 2012.

IN BAD ISCHL
A picturesque spa town in Upper Austria.

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IN SCHALLABURG CASTLE

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Windows from Schallaburg Renaissance Castle in Lower Austria. Click here to see more of Schallaburg.

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IN GMUNDEN

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Nice town near the lake that pretends to be a place for vacation. Actually Gmunden is quite industrial, but still pretty. You may see more then doors & windows here.

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IN LAXENBURG

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I came there for the castle, but suddenly not the castle's windows were my favorite ones.

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IN MELK

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Posted by vanessa 04:39 Archived in Austria Tagged vienna doors windows bear wien doors_and_windows 2012 semmering laxenburg Comments (1)

Closeups

Mixture of faces, goods, situations and what ever comes

GRAFFITI near Danube says: "One frog a day keeps doctor away"

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KATZENKINO
Here are hand-made nesting boxes for sale. Under the little door is written "Katzenkino" - means "Cinema for cats", in English.

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GUSTAV KLIMT... as a tart!
Oh, that's awful! Poor Klimt!

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ANTIQUE DOLLS at the flea market in Vienna.
Both: creepy and attractive.

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HERE ARE NINA AND LENA.
What could be better then a sigarette in sun?

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THE SIGN in the yard of winemakers (Village of Langenlois)

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GRASSHOPPER - a citizen of Donauinsel (Vienna)

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WHO IS THERE?
Detail of wooden ornament from Laxenburg Castle. I am watching it again and can't decide if it's the devil? nymph? or mermaid? Whoever it was, he seems in good spirits.

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Posted by vanessa 03:44 Archived in Austria Tagged portrait shot closeup sloseups Comments (0)

Sturm

In early September - it's time for sturm.
You can't miss it, because it appears everywhere you go: cafe and restaurants inform: "WE DO HAVE STURM!", it sold in supermarkets and in the street you can see people that caressing it in hands. Don't ask me how I missed i]sturm[/i], but I did. For years! What the shame! Sturm- means storm or English. I guess it's about thunder behaving after sturm. Or may be not? :-)

But enough of mystery.
It's time to explain to Ausländers (= forigners) what is this sturm going about.

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Sturm is a drink - it's grape juice in the half-way to being wine. Very tasty! Alike wine, it comes in white or in red "edition". Sturm is available only in the fall and has a very short shelf life - it must be drunk within a few days of purchase, but it's not a problem, ah? The fascinating thing about this drink is that it is still continuing to ferment--constantly--and Grape juice becomes sturm when it between 4% to 10% alcohol. Do you know what? Also when it gets into your stomach it continues the fermentation. You can constantly add water and stay drunk for longer! How does it sound to you?

Here are more reasons for travelling Austria in the fall time read this post.

Posted by vanessa 11:13 Archived in Austria Tagged drink sturm Comments (0)

The flight with "Niki"

rain 16 °C

Sept 12, 2012
23:00 PM
HELLO FROM VIENNA INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT!
Rainy night. We arrived to airport a bit earlier then planned. 3rd terminal is under construction and navigation inside is difficult. However the airport is very clean and tidy and they (management and team?) apologise for inconvience each 3 meters: "Entschuldigen, entschuldigen...". We were moving through long empty corridors and holes, switching lifts, sometimes getting outdoor and then into again. It feels alike taking part in the computer game! Challenging!

NIKI LAUDA
In chance you don't know about NIKI - it's an airline company founded by an Austrian former Formula One racing driver and three-time F1 World Champion Niki (Nikolaus) Lauda. Afterwards he is a sports manager, television commentator on German TV channel RTL, an expert on auto racing, etc. Recently, couple of years ago, he has founded and run airline company. He is not only a former sport-star (he's 60+ now), but very interesting personality.
From F1 officcial site (I can't tell it better then them):
"He bought his way into Formula One racing and very nearly paid for it with his life. Given up for dead after an appalling accident he recovered by what the medical profession called sheer force of will. His astonishingly quick return to the cockpit was called the most courageous comeback in sporting history. After winning two championships he got bored and left the sport, only to return again and win another. During his remarkable career he was called both a hero and a villain. The battle-scarred champion who defied both the odds and convention remains a living legend."
Flying with NIKI for us was meaning more then just a flight.

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Niki Lauda

23:20
FLY NIKI!
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After some strolling we arrived into the place of Niki-fly (large flies on the walls!). There were very few passengers and similar number of gals in check-in. Actually, there were no passengers in the line to registrations, except of us. And no line as well. You'll not believe - we received sits number 2A and 2B! I think we were first for registration, but sits in the 1st line were saved for kids and invalids.

23:40
TIROLEAN SHINKEN
We passed through duty-free (promiced to buy sigarets to someone and did so) and stucked to watch the Tirolean schinken. Fascinated. The shop was closed but schinken behind the glass looked very attractive. Definately.

00:05
THE ENTERTAINMENT
Being unsocial, we didn't stay with other passengers that waited for flights to Tel Aviv, Teheran and Moscow (what a composition!), but returned back to the area of passport control, as we seen plenty of vacant sits there. Really, we took the spacy room alone. We were sitting there in comfort, like in the 1st row in theatre, and watching arriving passengers: Iranian women in purdah, religious Georgian Jews - dressed in black and from head to toe hung with gold, Russian girls in mini, shabby kibbutzniks with their chocolate-smeared vociferous children. All of them, regardless of origin, turned to the wrong direction - just because we two were sitting there.

Sept 13, 2012
01:00
THE FLIGHT WITH NIKI
Finally we got our sits in the 2nd row in the plain. We didn't have much expectations, as Niki is budget company, but the flight was very good. It could be perfect if no loud uneducated kids in the 1st row. Of course there were "our" Israeli children - those that doesn't know what means the word "no" and receive applauds for each silly note they say. Oh, yes, I was very angry - I prefer to sleep or just to close my eyes in 3am, not to be involved in the educational process. Once again I saluted in my heart to well-mannered and tidy Austrian kiddies.

The trained team served everyone with incredible patience and, surprisely, we ever received the "dinner" (or breakfast?) in about 3 am. It was very tasty and crispy chicken-toast, that will not be shaming the restaurant in the city. As I know "Niki" propose food from "Demel", if my toast came from there - then it really came "from the good house".

What else I mentioned in this flight: the greetings and into were said by Niki Lauda himself! Andre easily recognised his voice, as he (Andre) is keen rooter of F1. It was touching. It feels like Niki in his red cup takes personal responsibility about safety and comfort of his passengers.

Posted by vanessa 22:55 Archived in Austria Tagged flight plane niki nikifly Comments (0)

Last days - they are short days

semi-overcast

Last days are running fast.
Packing and some meetings, last talks, preparation and stuff.
Last city-strolls.

AUF WIEDERSEHEN
(We) came to say hello (and thanks!) to Monika and Gerhard. I missed a moment to take their photo in the village, so here they are - in their city-apartment. My Austrians. Angelika was busy at work and we didn't meet additional time before the flight. But Gabriel was there. He is not in photos - cause he was in his "shy" mode. Never mind, I have other photos of them.

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My last 2012 Vienna shots

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and the last pics from the island - it's not yet autumn, but summer has gone. Water is transparent and too cold for swimming

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BEAVERS
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Yesterday night we went to watch beavers! It wasn't easy in darkness but we seen them coming. Truly, I feel much less for them now then I used to do. They erase all trees on the island with monotonic callousness. I do understand that they have to eat for living, but why to damage each time another tree? It's annoying behaving.

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At another side I feel sorry for them. They supposed to be wild animals of countrysides, but they live in horrible conditions - it's not about lack of food, the area is green and very clean - both, ecologically and tidy. Another thing is disturbing. In night time all sound especially loud: disco-music from the club over the river is bumping the ears, train is rambling, ambulance is howling and if it was not enough - there are frequent helicopters in the sky.

Posted by vanessa 08:38 Archived in Austria Tagged people sky vienna donauinsel beavers Comments (0)

Le Meridien

Not just a hotel

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LE MERIDIEN is a luxurious hotel on Opernring Boulevard, next to Art Academy. Actually it's much more then "the hotel that offers an inspiring accommodation and exclusive services."
Here is the best modern design of interiors that I ever seen and it constantly changes. Each year I see a new concept - the photos below are taken in 2012.
Of course there are variety of options for meal and drink (restaurant, bar, cafe, etc), personally I only was in cafe LE MOËT - it's wonderful.

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Posted by vanessa 20:15 Archived in Austria Tagged le_meridien meridien Comments (0)

Tracking in Rax mountains

Did you ever try the barefoot hiking in Alps?

sunny 23 °C

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The Rax is a mountain range at the border of the Austrian federal provinces Lower Austria and Styria, situated in the Northern Limestone Alps. Rax is relatively easy reachable from Vienna by train. Then a shuttle - free during the day time, will take you to the lift at foot of the mountain massive. About 20 mins in the ski-lift -- it's almost vertical and supplies great views.

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At the top - alike everywhere in Austria, extensive / advanced infrastructure of all kinds of mountain activities: for hiking, for climbing, for skiing, for sleds, for children, for adults, for hungry and for thirsty people. You may find their just everything you need for successful day in mountains.

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We came there for hiking.

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Very soon we found that my mom lost her soles. They just had fallen off of her expensive Italian mountain boots. She hobbled on mountain path, keeping the soles in her hands. Happily it happen on the plateau, which is almost flat and not on a vertical "goat trail". Roger was exceedingly worried look, he held her by the elbow. Occasionally his foot were slipping (as he wore inappropriate shoes) and then he was hunging up on her.

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Normally I scold Andre for the habit to pick up "the rubbish", but now those multi-proposal plastic bands that he found on the ground couple of days ago - they were very handy. Being a worthy companion to my husband, I kept a sharp kitchen knife in the bag - to cut tomatoes. Don't forget that we were far from home and from all our equipment, so we should to improvise. Andre attached the soles back to the shoes rather quickly and they begun "walkable" again ... for some time.Definately, for barefood person the most reasonable was to go down by lift, but my heroic mother, warmed by not less heroic Roger, rejected the idea. What ever. After short walk on the plateau we begun the descent. Descent certainly easier than climbing, but I assure you, it was nevertheless serious enough even to our trained legs. There is an Austrian "light/medium trail" and it's nothing to do there for other nations. Austrians are born for mountain hiking. All of them. They are doing it from the birth to death, during whole their lives, they enjoy it - I have seen their shining eyes, they are singing in the way. They know what to eat when they arrive a heurige in the mid-way and to hold a pint of cold beer in never-trembling hands.
Prost!

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Our not-drinking and not-walking companions overestimated their capabilities. Clearly. But at that moment no one of us knew it yet.

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I will not bore you with all the details of this surrealistic trip through mountain forest. The trail was steep, sometimes even slippy, it took about 5 hours. My mom didn't complain a word, but when we arrived the mountain foot (relatively flat place, but not yet the end of the road) - her shoes were the completely no soles and her knees bended. Roger did endless number of ass-falls during the way, but, thanks God, didn't brake anything. And we - we found mushrooms. Eatable. We have eat them and still alive - you see, I even able to write this blog post. When we came to the road - it was too late for shuttle but we caught the last bus running to the train station. We reached the city in night. The happy end.

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I liked the place and I think it worth the second visit - just Andre and me, alone
;-)

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Posted by vanessa 22:43 Archived in Austria Tagged mountains hiking mountain track alps boots barefoot rax Comments (1)

L'elisir d'amore

viva la opera!

It's the magnificent opera: brilliant redaction, amazing voices and wonderful decoration. Tons of pleasure!

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Press on the photo - to see video on youtube.

As we were planned to go to Carinthia for the last week and didn't hope for any outgoing - the city-dress was already packed. I felt not in mood to unpack and re-pack it again, so I just took the dirndl that received from Monika. I think I look a bit funny in it - my Mediterranean look doesn't match dirndl. But Roger got excited, seeing me in the "uniform" and rush to take photos :-)

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Posted by vanessa 23:46 Archived in Austria Tagged opera dirndl Comments (2)

Cafe Neko

Dogs are not allowed

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I found Cafe Neko by chance, going to this weird ice-cream "Lepantos", where Beetroot Sorbet and Pepper-Caramel are served.
If you are fan of ice-cream and looking for "concept" ice - this place in Balgasse (behind the St Stephan Cathedral) is for you.
I mentioned an interesting business lable on the building near - it was a sleeping cat. I took photos I begun to have an interest about what is going inside.

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Cafe Neko is the cat cafe, where you can have drinks while playing with cats. Yea, you got it right, it's place where cats allowed and welcome, but no dogs. There are few permanent citizen -cats (clean, healthy and happy) and transparent kitchinetta - you can see the cooking lady behind. In fact, except for coffee and cake there is nothing special to eat, but prices bite - so the main attraction is the cats.

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Posted by vanessa 18:39 Archived in Austria Tagged cat cafe Comments (0)

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