Vienna gave us one of opera’s happier love stories (Franz Lehár’s The Merry Widow since you ask). So here some options for February 14th in our fair city.
- For the record: yes, it’s celebrated locally
- Book a concert & dinner* in Vienna
- See also:
Romance for two in 2025
Not going to lie…I’ve been married so long that a romantic gesture now means cleaning the apartment on a Saturday morning while your partner has a lie in. But I am not entirely lost to the art of romance.
For those who prefer to say it with flowers rather than a vacuum cleaner, a few suggestions for Valentine’s Day 2025 in Vienna…
(Dinner in the sky at the Danube Tower; press photo © Donauturm)
The obvious choice is a suitably romantic location for a tête-à-tête over a glass of wine and fine food. Perhaps with a view across the city rooftops.
Since a romantic dinner is not just something for Valentine’s Day, I actually have a whole article of suggestions. Obviously, book well in advance for the commercial locations.
Many restaurants will have Valentine’s Day offers, of course. Last time out, for example, the Donauturm viewing platform had special options available in its tower café and restaurant.
Dinner and a concert?
(The Kursalon venue)
How about a night of light classical music in a romantic historical ambience with dinner to boot? Two strong options which might repeat in 2025:
- Schönbrunn concerts: a bit of Strauss and Mozart in the long Baroque palace orangery, where the latter used to play for Emperor Joseph II (unless I’ve mixed up my monarchs)
- Kursalon concerts: another evening of Strauss and Mozart at the very neorenaissance venue where the former once waved his baton with energetic vigour
Check out a few concert options here*, too, as the big day approaches.
Valentine’s Day specials
(A kiss beneath The Kiss? Press photo © Ivory Rose Photography / Belvedere, Wien)
Obviously, a lot of locations, hotels, and attractions have come up with ideas for special events or offers on the 14th.
It’s way too early for 2025, but the following are various specials for common tourist attractions that passed through my inbox in 2024…
(NB: expect numerous museums to put on unique love-themed tours, but most of these will be in German only.)
Sample specials from last year
Enjoy a kiss and the Kiss?
Between 6.30pm and midnight on February 14th, Upper Belvedere offered free entry to its Klimt rooms. A professional photographer took your photo as you kissed in front of Gustav Klimt’s most famous masterpiece and then gave you a copy of the result (also for free).
All on a first come first served basis.
Look out for offers for couples and pairs at the museums and similar locations. Last year, for example:
- If you bought a ticket on February 14th on-site at the Albertina art museum, your other half got a free ticket.
- The Retro Gaming Museum had the same deal available, so you could form a love triangle with your partner and Pac Man.
- Ditto the Künstlerhaus art venue. The offer also extended to a combi-ticket with the Albertina Modern in the same building.
On the water?
(Valentine’s Day dinner along the Danube; press photo © DDSG Blue Danube & Emanuel Kaser)
Ah, moonbeams on the waterfront as your gondola…um, no, that’s Venice not Vienna. However…
- The DDSG Blue Danube cruise service that operates around Vienna’s waterways offered an evening trip up the river with a candlelit dinner and live jazz on the 14th.
- From 3pm on the 14th, the 10th floor of the huge Haus des Meeres aquarium and vivarium had a “Puppi in Love” photo booth for a suitably romantic photo opp featuring a denizen of the sea.
A night at the opera?
(The Staatsoper State Opera House)
A spot of high culture seems a fine way to spend the evening on Valentine’s Day. Though the major houses eschewed romantic themes in 2024. Perhaps 2025 will bring more luck, but we have to wait for the 2024/2025 season programme to find out.
(Scene of the poetry recital in Before Sunrise)
Alternatively, simply draw Valentine inspiration from fictional and courtly lovers and retrace their journeys. For example:
- Before Sunrise movie: copy Jesse and Céline as they wander nocturnal Vienna, talk about life, and learn that we’re all just stardust. Recreate Jesse’s recital of Auden’s poem As I walked out one Evening outside the Albertina.
- Sachertorte movie: take after Karl and enjoy chocolate cake and coffee in honour of the (possible) love of your life
- Empress Elisabeth: turn the clocks back some 150 years and tread gently in the footsteps of the legendary Sisi, subject of Emperor Franz Joseph’s undying love. (Although that relationship was perhaps also as much tragedy as romance.)
I shall update and add options as they cross my desk…