Hotel Review: Hotel Bristol Vienna


A long-standing and celebrated symbol of Viennese high society, Steph Theodosiou jumped at the chance to experience an exclusive stay at the 5-star Hotel Bristol Vienna

I step out of the U-Bahn (tube) and come face-to-face with the majestic Vienna State Opera house in the heart of Vienna’s beautiful First District. Tonight is opera night and the lights are glowing warmly inside as they prepare for the evening’s performance. Across the road on the neighbouring corner, just a mere 90 metres away from the opera’s front doors, lies my destination for the evening: the legendary Hotel Bristol Vienna.

Hotel Bristol_Entrance & Concierge

Upon entering the stunning lobby with its Art Deco influences, one automatically feels the hotel’s sense of grandeur oozing from the exquisite marble bathing the space and the black, white and warm ochre designs. Importantly, it doesn’t feel oppressing, it still maintains that significant at-home ease. Steeped in superior service and elegant Viennese charm, we are greeted by a bellboy and an attentive concierge who show us to the check in desk.

Hotel_Bristol_Bristol Bar_1

Our room for the night is a wonderfully traditional Viennese suite on the top floor, complete with a striking combination of fin-de-siècle antiques, intricately patterned accessories and views of the extraordinary rooftop and spire of the St. Stephen’s Cathedral. The marble bathroom, chaise longue and beautifully-made, gigantic bed are all certainly inviting, but first, the all-important matter of dinner.

Hotel Bristol_Penthouse Suite

The dining lounge is impressive; ornate chandeliers sparkle, the fireplace roars and the glossy black grand piano all add to the feeling of comforting sophistication. As it is also the middle of Vienna’s Ball season, the setting looks even grander, with every table adorned in pressed white tablecloths; guests donning fabulous floor-length gowns and handsome tuxedos are starting their festivities here before heading to one of three balls happening this evening.

The Hotel Bristol’s excellent dinner menu features delicacies such as Atlantic Lobster and Champagne Risotto and Austrian classics including Fried Veal Escalope (which some claim to be the best in the city) and Beef Goulash “Vienna Style”. Tonight however, there is an exclusive 4-course Ball Menu which we naturally choose without even looking at what it entails. Luckily all the courses are delicious, I cannot recommend this menu more highly!

Hotel Bristol_Bristol Lounge_2

We whet our appetites with a delicious peach Bellini and an amuse bouche of prosciutto with black nut jelly and sour cream. The starter is a salmon carpaccio with passion fruit, followed by a cream of celeriac soup with small pineapple chunks. It sounds like a strange combination, but I assure you works fantastically!

The main dish is a melt-in-the-mouth steak filet with truffle potato puree and snow peas. Dessert is a lusciously rich but perfectly sized slice of Valrhona chocolate mousse cake with raspberries. We happily head to bed with full stomachs already dreaming about the morning’s breakfast selection.

Hotel Bristol_Opern Suite

After a refreshing night’s sleep and lie in in the biggest and possibly most comfortable bed I have ever slept in (quite a claim, I know!), we stroll downstairs to enjoy the buffet. And what a spread awaits us! The smell of fresh bread wafting in from the kitchen accompanies a feast for the eyes and soon to be for the belly, also: fresh juice, teas, coffee, pastries, cakes, fruit, cereals, cold meats, cheese… A highlight is the integrated show kitchen with two chefs making custom omelettes. Omelettes ordered, we settle down to slowly work our way through the delights; the eponymous Bristol cake is particularly tasty, so we help ourselves to second slices.

Suitably stuffed and energised, we check out and get ready for a day of sightseeing, beginning of course at our neighbour, the Vienna State Opera house.

Make it happen
Where: Kärntner Ring 1, 1010 Wien, Austria
Cost:Ball Menu costs €94 per person for 4 courses. Rooms start from £247 per night.
Bookings: To make a reservation, click here or phone +43 1 515160

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