Unsurprisingly, Vienna has no shortage of quality accommodation, whether five star hotels or simple apartment alternatives.
I have numerous hotel suggestions for you based on typical location needs, as well as general advice on such issues as local taxes, use of English, visitor-friendly parts of the city, etc.
Hotels & location tips
(Do&Co Hotel Vienna with views across the central cathedral square)
Let’s begin with suggestions for the better hotels around notable Vienna hotspots and event locations:
- Best hotels close to the centre: places to stay around the pedestrianised square (Stephansplatz) at the heart of the city and home to Stephansdom cathedral.
- Places to stay near the Christmas markets: specifically the famous Christkindlmarkt on Rathausplatz square, though the suggestions remain handy for other central markets, too.
- Places to stay near the airport: at the time of writing, only two hotels occupy space on the actual airport grounds. Both are just a very short walk from the terminals.
(Hotel Sacher sits opposite the opera house)
- Hotels near the state opera house: in case you want to fall into bed before the echoes of the last aria at the Staatsoper have died away.
- Hotels near Schönbrunn palace and park: the Habsburg “country” residence makes a destination in its own right and has several good hotels nearby.
- Hotels near the Marx Halle: a popular event centre in a converted historical slaughter house in the media and bioscience quarter of Vienna
- Hotels near Messe Wien: locations around the big venue for large expos and shows, such as the Vienna Comic Con.
(Entrance to Hotel Imperial, one of Vienna’s 5* superior hotels)
- Luxury hotels: those officially recognised as five star or five star superior by the Vienna Chamber of Commerce.
- Hotels near the Austria Center: another big convention centre and adjacent to the Vienna International Centre (home to the United Nations, the IAEO and other multinational orgaisations).
- Hotels near the Musikverein: find accommodation close to Vienna’s most prestigious concert venue featuring world-class classical musicians and performances.
Which part of Vienna should you stay in?
(Stephansdom cathedral dominates the centre)
The centre of Vienna (1st district, postal code 1010) is the old town within what were once the medieval city limits: good for soaking up historical atmosphere and actually relatively quiet toward the evening.
Other good central districts for a hotel or apartment are Neubau (7th district, postal code 1070) or Josefstadt (8th district, postal code 1080): lively, well-connected, and have lots of places to eat and drink.
You can’t go wrong really with any district 1 to 9, though, since they encircle the old town.
Having said that, Vienna is a relatively compact city, and public transport gets you more or less anywhere very quickly.
(The Austria Trend Parkhotel Schönbrunn Wien once housed the emperor’s guests to the summer Habsburg palace)
Among those districts a little further out, the 13th, 18th and 19th are well-to-do and the 13th also covers the popular Schönbrunn palace complex.
(I live in an outer district and am under 20 minutes away from the centre by tram.)
The same concept applies if you choose accommodation outside the city. Most surrounding settlements have frequent city train (S-Bahn) services into Vienna.
On that note, easy accessibility means places can get away with describing their location as “central”, even when it isn’t perhaps as truly central as that might imply.
Bonus accommodation tips
(Hotels fill up during the Christmas market season – mid-November through to New Year – so book early)
- Will I pay a hotel or local tax? Yes, but it’s low and normally included in the price you find quoted on hotel websites.
- As always with planning a visit, book early where possible. Vienna gets pretty full with visitors throughout the year (in normal times!), with the exception of late January, February, March (unless Easter is early) and early November (before the seasonal markets open).
- The summer brings many visitors, but December is particularly busy thanks to the immense popularity of those Christmas markets. Consider late November as a solid alternative, however, since all the main seasonal markets should be open by then but the accompanying seasonal crowds have yet to arrive in full.
- Given the high level of education in the country, plus the many vocational schools specialising in tourism, your hotel and accommodation staff should be well-qualified and conversant in English.
- Should you need help planning where to stay, take a look at the main sightseeing areas (with a map).
- And this map lets you jump right in and pick out hotels and apartments near the pedestrianised centre of town:
(Service provided by Booking.com*, who I am an affiliate of)