So you’re in Vienna for the Christmas markets and want a hotel near enough lights and gingerbread to delight a Disney princess?
I’ve listed the best hotels located around 450 yards or less from the Rathausplatz square, where the main Christkindlmarkt takes place. Each had a user rating (when I last checked) of at least 7.8/10.
I’ve some general tips after the suggestions, too. And the map at the end shows more hotel and apartment options that are also close to the market.
Your top options…
Located in a town palace built in 1882 and now part of the Radisson hotel group. My parents stayed in this hotel when they visited at Christmas a few years back and were very happy.
(My dad would always pop out in the early evening just to grab a quick bag of roast chestnuts from the market.)
The Rathauspark of the hotel name is the park that flanks the market. It features its own seasonal displays that include the famous (at least locally) tree of glowing hearts.
The road behind the hotel has the Long Hall bar, which is an excellent choice should you also want to keep up with the football.
Self-styled “Design Hotel” featuring a unique collection of glass art and a large inner courtyard. On the opposite side of the Christmas market from the Hotel Rathauspark, but equally close.
Your short walk to the market from here takes you past the rear of the newly-renovated 19th-century Austrian parliament: the free English tours lead you right into the centre of national politics.
You also pass Conditorei Sluka, who once served cakes to Empress Elisabeth of Austria. (I have a crush on their Birnentorte pear cake.)
Turn right out of the hotel and walk along the road south for around eight minutes to reach another major market on Maria-Theresien-Platz.
This small, old-Viennese style hotel located in another of Vienna’s many late-19th century buildings might just be the closest of all: the park hosting the market is literally just around the corner.
Near to the prestigious University of Vienna and also (like Hotel Rathauspark) not far from the neogothic Votivkirche church put up in the late 1800s as thanks for a foiled assassination attempt on Emperor Franz Joseph.
With so many stars, you don’t have to worry about whether they have fresh rolls at the hotel breakfast.
The location on lovely Herrengasse on the other side of the Ring Boulevard from the Christkindlmarkt puts you in the heart of the historical old town. The hotel is also close to the Freyung, Michaelerplatz, and Am Hof Christmas markets.
Herrengasse has its own subway station on the U3 line. And, if you fancy a change from hotel food and drink, one of Vienna’s most famous coffee houses sits opposite: Café Central (gorgeous interiors, but consider reserving a table as queues are frequent).
5. Steigenberger Hotel Herrenhof*
As above (the two hotels practically adjoin each other).
Incidentally, Herrengasse also leads up to the giant Hofburg palace complex, with the Spanish Riding School, Sisi Museum, Crown Jewels, and other such attractions.
That end of Herrengasse also links to the central pedestrianised streets with their luxury brands and historical architecture. These connect all the way down to Stephansdom cathedral (and another market!). Hard to get more central, frankly.
(Your next door neighbour: the Schottenkirche)
6. Benediktushaus im Schottenstift*
This one’s somewhat unusual: a guesthouse that’s part of the Schottenstift, a working Benedictine Monastery with its own museum and roots in the 12th century (fortunately, sanitation has improved since then).
Expect a quiet ambience. The rooms have no TVs or radios, for example (you do have WiFi though!).
Excellent value for the incredibly central and historic location: the building actually backs onto the Freyung Christmas market on the same-named square. A friend of mine stayed here and spoke very positively of the experience.
The Benediktushaus also looks across to a Baroque palais or two, not to mention various restaurants, a leading contemporary art venue and Austria’s constitutional court.
Other hotel options
(Map provided by booking.com*, who I am an affiliate of. The Christkindlmarkt on the Rathausplatz is labelled at the centre)
Although the Christkindlmarkt can be considered the main market, Vienna has several others that are smaller, but still worth a visit. So hotels in the central part of town may well be close to a Christmas market of some description.
Equally, the compact old town means a little bit of walking usually lets you take in three or four markets without too much effort.
(Gateway to the Schönbrunn Christmas market with the palace behind)
Also, Vienna’s municipal transport system is top quality. Trams and subways are fast and frequent, so you should be able to get to most market locations pretty easily, wherever you might be staying in town.
The below map shows where you find the main markets. And should you wish to stay close to the Schönbrunn market and all that the palace has to offer, then try these specific suggestions.