Page 1

THE MOST FAMOUS HOTELS IN THE WORLD

HOTEL

BRISTOL VIENNA

ANDREAS AUGUSTIN


Hotel Bristol Vienna

2


THE MOST FAMOUS HOTELS IN THE WORLD

BRISTOL Vienna

Hotel Bristol, around 1910

A Select Member of

The Most Famous Hotels in the World


ANDREAS AUGUSTIN presents Hotel Bristol, Vienna as part of the series THE MOST FAMOUS HOTELS IN THE WORLD The idea to produce this book was encouraged and supported by the former managing director of Imperial Hotels Austria AG Erhard Noreisch. Ever since it was accompanied by the director of public relations of the house, Dr. Petra Engl-Wurzer and we thank her for all her efforts. Our heartfelt gratitude also goes to the current and former general managers of the house, in particular Oscar del Campo, Thomas Schön, Raimund Jeschek-Fritsch, Andreas Vögl, Georg W. Engelhardt and the late Otto Scheiner. Research for this book started in the 1990s, and on the way we have met many helpful people who provided material. Thanks to Isabella Rittenschober, Wolfgang Erdhart, Dieter Ludewig, Andeas Bienenstein, Pamela Engelmann, Evelyne Seyfried, Regina Klaus, Barbara Bischof, Heiko Brunner, Reinhard Gerer, Konrad Gutlederer, Dieter Hölzl, Johann Krätschmer, Caroline Müller, Lisa Nassler, Gerhard Palm, Franz Ramusch, Gabriela Reithofer, Rupert Schnait, Gerald Angelmahr and all the others. Special thanks to Prince Ulrich Kinsky. Historical database: Mag. Carola E. Augustin and Dr. Marcello de la Speranza. Special thanks to our George Gershwin specialist, Richard Lewis, to Haik Zarian and Dr. Helmut Lederer. Photography: Jaime Ardiles-Arce; Philipp Hutter, archives of the Hotel Bristol; archives of the Austrian National Library (portrait collection, picture library and Fideikommissbibliothek); archives of M. de la Speranza, Vienna; Famous Hotels Main Archives, Vienna; Imperial War Museum, London; The British Library; Archives d’Outre-mer, Aix-enProvence, Franz-Ulrich Prince Kinsky, Gustav Kollar, Hans Brunner. All historical data used in our research was selected and collated according to universally applicable principles. Our aim was to provide a general historical overview that should be both informative and entertaining. Therefore, this work does in no way claim to be complete. The entire work including its cover, attached postcards and bookmarks is subject to copyright laws. No part of this book may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, or by any information storage and retrieval system without express written permission from the copyright owner. Important Note for Publishers and Authors All photographic material used in this book can be obtained as digital files of the highest quality. Please contact the Archives of THE MOST FAMOUS HOTELS IN THE WORLD and request the best possible photographic material for your own publications. We would be delighted to help. Cover: Hotel Bristol, by Manfred Markowski, 2010 Digital edition: Hotel Bristol Vienna, by Andreas Augustin © THE MOST FAMOUS HOTELS IN THE WORLD 1998–2010 Main archives: Glasauergasse 36, 1130 Vienna, Austria e-mail: info@famoushotels.org All books can be found at www.famoushotels.org


Bienvenue Willkommen Welcome


Hotel Bristol Vienna

In May 1986, British/Canadian novelist Arthur Hailey (1920– 2004) stayed at the Bristol. The author of ‘In High Places’, ‘Airport’, ‘Wheels’ and many more thrilling novels left this little note in the hotel’s guestbook. Of course he knew what he was talking about, after all he had written the best-seller ‘Hotel’, which had been turned into a TV-blockbuster. Philipp Hutter

Andreas Augustin, Viennese, connoisseur, family father, a passionate traveller, specialized in great hotels. That's in short the description of a man, who had founded THE MOST FAMOUS HOTELS IN THE WORLD to record the saga of a select group of over 400 hotels of distinct class and significant history in a unique series of books. Over many years he has compiled this history of the Hotel Bristol with devotion and attention to detail.

6


Hotel Bristol Vienna

1

2

Kärntnerring with the house (1) which, in 1892 became the first Hotel Bristol. Next door to the right, the house belonging to Anton Schneider. In 1870 it opened as the Grand Hotel (2). The full set of all engravings by F W. Bader can be seen at the Bristol’s gourmet restaurant Korso (‘Die Wiener Ringstrasse in ihrer Vollendung’, by L E Petrovit)

Contents Traveller‘s Notepad 12 Vienna, 26 June 1892 15 Paris, Gare de L’Est, 16 January 1900 33 Korso and Sirk Corner 50–53 The Painter, the Society and a Piece of Art 55 Seeing the Business through the great War 65 A Deluxe Hotel 82 An American in Vienna 93 The Crash, Politics, the Ball and the Opera 103 The Prince and Mrs Ernest Simpson 119 Good Bye, Austria 129 From war to Cold War into a Free and Modern Austria 137 Who‘s Who at the Bristol 157

7


Hotel Bristol Vienna

8


Hotel Bristol Vienna

9


Hotel Bristol Vienna

10


Hotel Bristol Vienna

THE FOUNDERS OF FAME

11


Hotel Bristol Vienna

Traveller’s Notepad

‘Welcome to the Hotel Bristol!’ The car attendant opens the door. The modern hackney carriage is made of solid metal and the door falls back into the lock with a rich sound. In front of me the Bristol. Across the road the Opera. From the open windows of a répétiteur’s chamber the wind carries strains of La Bohème over the Opernring. Later we will find out that Puccini resided at the Bristol. The welcome at the reception is the usual warm one, ‘welcome back home!’ – and I am ‘at home’. Opposite the all competent concierge desk – ever since a legend and tradition at this hotel. I immediately discuss the tickets for the opera performances, there is a philharmonic concert at the Musikverein, and a new ballet group is in town. There might be a chance for a ticket ... While I sink into the pillows of the Chineischer Salon, my mind already travels back to what we have researched and found about this great hotel. Follow me on a journey back to the Vienna of the 1890s. At that time it was the capital of the Austro-Hungarian Empire in the heart of Europe. Amidst a multitude of different nationalities and languages – the Hungarians called Vienna ‘Becs’ and the Czechs called it ‘Viden’ – German was the official language: from Bregenz in the west to the Russian and Romanian borders in the east, from Prague in the north down to Trieste and Pula – coastal towns on the Adriatic Sea. In 1892 over 41 million people lived within the boundaries of this empire. On 26 June 1892 Andreas Kührer, owner of two fine Viennese restaurants, opened the Hotel Bristol. The Hotel Bristol began its career approximately 100 metres from its present location. Over 12


Hotel Bristol Vienna

time it expanded, block by block, until finally in 1916 it included that part in which it is housed today. Gradually the hotel ‘worked its way up’ to the best address in town: Kärntnerring 1, on the corner of Kärntnerstrasse. This is where the ‘Sirkecke’ used to be, named after a merchant whose shop used to stand here. Enter the hotel with its exquisite restaurant, its discrete bar and its cosy ambience. You are diving into one of the last remaining secret meeting places of one of the most efficiently run republics in the world. The Bristol is one of the secluded switchboards of the country. Political decisions are made in meeting rooms hidden away under its roof, deals are sealed at its discrete bar, cultural sensations revealed in its oval lobby, books written in silent rooms, films made under its original Art Deco staircase and last but not least: exquisite food is served. After you Madam, or maybe the gentleman would like to take the first step onto the next pages, back to the year 1892.

Andreas Augustin Illustrations: The daily ‘Corso’ on the Korso. A detail from the genre painting featured on page 52. To the right the menu of the 1908 Derby dinner, traditionally held at the Bristol, then home of the Wiener Renn- und Kampagnereitergesellschaft.

13


Hotel Bristol Vienna

1892 The signs have been fixed and the Hotel Bristol eagerly awaits its first guests. ‘Will business be good?’ That was the burning question on everyone’s lips. Those were the days long before marketing managers began to sell their ‘products’ and services via e-commerce solutions. Yield management, which defines price structures depending on the number of reservations, was yet unheard of. In those days you simply opened your doors and waited. The most aggressive method of advertising was to send your porter to the train station to draw business away from the other hotels. 14


Vienna 1892

Vienna Royal Seat Capital of the k u k.* Monarchy Austria – Hungary 26 June 1892 The Bristol was born in the heart of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, in its capital Vienna, a cosmopolitan city of over one million people. At the forefront of artistic and social development – the somewhat cosy and stiff period of Biedermeier was long over – the age of the automobile, of speed, of electronic information transfer was dawning. Emperor Franz Joseph I. von Habsburg was already over 60. The stability of his reign had given the country decades of relative peace, with the exception of small ‘emergencies’ in Serbia, Montenegro, Bosnia. But that was ‘far away’, Vienna itself was never troubled by these things. The nobility and a very small circle of people who had access to court matters dominated the all important gossip columns in various papers. The Habsburg with all their princes and princesses appeared in public to open bridges, inaugurate electric illuminations, cut ribbons. Preferably they gathered at intimate celebrations without outside guests such as the ‘Ball bei Hof’. Meanwhile, the outside world was developing rapidly and we know today that the old Emperor eventually didn’t undertake much to keep up with this pace. While in London and other cities around the world young Suffragettes grew up to one day chain themselves to public gates, in Vienna feminists like Rosa Mayreder shone under the newly invented electrical bulb. The author-turned medical doctor Arthur Schnitzler created scandal with his love and sex addressing plays such as ‘Liebelei’ or ‘Reigen’. Siegmund * k.u.k. stands for kaiserlich und königlich = imperial and royal

15


Hotel Bristol Vienna

Freud was about to discover the secret desires of mankind. Hugo Wolf composed his hard-to-get-used-to music and a small group of artists were inspired to create a genre that later became known as Art Nouveau. The masters of the opulent neoclassical architecture of the Viennese city like Arthur Hansen were lying on their deathbeds. The next generation was all ready. In protest against the playful style of their old masters, the likes of Adolf Loos would soon trigger off the Modern Movement. When the Bristol opened in 1892, Loos was 22, the artist Klimt already 30, Egon Schiele only two. In 1848 only 7.000 Jews lived in Vienna. By 1913, there were 190.000. As more and more Jews from Bohemia, Moravia, Hungary and Bokowina moved to the city, anti-Semitism – openly supported by the Viennese mayor Lueger – began to rear its ugly head. Soon Jewish factory owners were blamed for the plight of small trade and most politicians did nothing to dispel this idea. The fact that Vienna’s cultural and intellectual power depended largely on Jewish input did nothing to alleviate the problem. Austria had gone through the phase of being ‘French’, with Napoleon’s short visits at the begin of the nineteenth century. Leftovers of this failed attempt to free the Austrian people from imperial oppression were and still are found in Viennese daily language. In houses we have Mezzanines and Parterre. ‘One’ spoke German with the occasional French word; one didn’t converse, but parlierte (from parler = to speak). Morning concerts were matineés and late evening meals of course supées. Menus were all in French. In return, the croissant, the most French of all French bakery products, is an Austrian invention, brought to Paris by Marie Antoinette, the daughter of Maria Theresa, who first lost her heart and later her head in France. There the croissant and other pastries from Vienna are still called Viennoiseries today. Now, times were changing. With the arrival of modern technical inventions from England, it had become fashionable for the Viennese to do things the English way. English terms flowed into the German language. Countess Vetsera, who had joined the heir to the throne, Crown Prince Rudolf, in a much-doubted suicide pact in 1889, had called herself Mary. The suburb 16


Vienna 1892

Mariahilf was home to the Savoy and the Windsor hotels. The Hotel Britannia was at Schillerplatz. There were the Hotel zur Stadt London, the Grand National and the Continental. People chatted about News from the Turf, the traditional midday meal became lunch and at night you had dinner. Servants were now butlers and suddenly people drank tea. However, the connections to the empire of Queen Victoria were not only of a fashionable nature. Economic issues played an important part, too. English companies and their know-how had spread across the entire continent. It had all started with the railway over half a century earlier. Now, specialists for gas and electricity came over from England. Vienna’s most famous sight, the Riesenrad, the Prater’s famous Ferris wheel, was also constructed by a team of English engineers.* Travelling people, in particular Americans, were the latest sensation and a very profitable source of income. They came by ocean liners from the States, boarded the overnight trains to European capitals, where they started to search their past, their roots, an historical identity. And they came for culture. First to consume it, then to copy and finally to buy it. Plenty of classic European pieces of art were sold to Americans and crossed the Atlantic on a one way trip. American standards were modern, Viennese hotels were not. This is the point when our story begins, right here in Vienna. Slowly we glide over the houses of the formidable Ringstrasse. The grand Palais, the Ministry of War (in the following century globally turned into Ministries of Defence), the huge museums, the City Hall, the Burgtheater, the elegant Gsssg * A Ferris wheel is an amusement ride consisting of an upright wheel with passenger gondolas suspended from the rim. It is named after George Washington Gale Ferris, Jr., who designed a 75-metre (250-foot) wheel for the World Columbian Exposition in Chicago in 1893. It was designed as a rival to the Eiffel Tower, the centrepiece of the 1889 Paris exhibition. This first wheel carried 2160 people at a time. Its axle was the largest piece of steel cast to that time. The entire machine weighed 2200 tons. At 26 stories it was four stories taller than the tallest skyscraper in the world also in Chicago but only a quarter of the Eiffel Tower’s height. It was reused at the St. Louis World’s Fair. The Viennese Ferris wheel dates back to 1897.

17


Hotel Bristol Vienna

Hotel Imperial, the exuberant Grand Hotel, the Opera House. Opposite the Opera House we find two men, whose conversation turned around the subject of this book: ‘Well, my dear Kührer, I’ll keep my fingers crossed for you,’ said Carl Wolf. Andreas Kührer looked at him suspiciously. He’d never quite been able to fathom out the man who had come to Vienna almost ten years earlier. Wolf was from Saaz, the mostly German-speaking regional capital of Bohemia. That was where the best hops were grown. Unsurprisingly, Wolf was in the beer business. He represented the Alt-Pilsenetzer Brewery in Vienna. The flow of Alt-Pilsenetzer beer into the city on the Danube had increased year by year until it was available almost anywhere in Vienna. Andreas Kührer, the restaurateur and soon hotelier, sold it in his beer cellar Zum alten Stephanskeller at Stephansplatz 2 and of course in his upmarket restaurant Monopole on the elegant Kärntnerring. Both men were standing in front of the Monopole looking over the broad ring road. A horse-drawn tram rattled by. It was full of Viennese citizens travelling to the green meadows of the Prater on this gorgeous Sunday. An ox cart was slowly drawing nearer. On its loading area stood a giant wooden box. Everybody knew what it contained: the name Bösendorfer, Vienna’s leading piano manufacturer, was written on it in neat capitals. Hotel Imperial in 1873 18


Vienna 1892

The Ringstrasse in 1880. The trees are still young, but all the houses that one day would belong to the Bristol already existed. In the distance we can see the Grand Hotel. Across the road stands the Hotel Imperial, which had opened its doors in 1873. It was run by Johannes Frohner, one of the most outstanding hoteliers of his time.

Suddenly a motor vehicle clattered by. ‘Whatever will they invent next?’ Wolf shook his head and stared at the automobile. In the timespan of three minutes three different means of transport, past, present and future, had made their appearance. Then his gaze fell onto the corner house on the opposite side of the road. ‘Your entire fortune stands over there. Have you invested all you had?’ asked Wolf. Kührer nodded. ‘I’ll admit that its refurbishment cost me a fortune. Still, renting out the rooms will pay for that. Look at the Grand Hotel next door. It’s doing excellent business. Many of their guests come to me for dinner. They pay a fortune for one of those rooms. No bed below two guilders. The Hotel Metropole down at the quay actually has a suite that they rent out for 30 guilders a night.

19


Hotel Bristol Vienna

British tailors and fashion stores caused a sensation. The ‘Gentleman’ was born. Albert Wolff (Salon Knize), the best gentlemen’s tailor in town, only dealt in the finest English cloth.

They recently published a census which states that 170.000 travellers came to Vienna in 1881. By 1891 the figure was almost 300.000. We need more rooms in this city. With the latest modern amenities. Our house will be the most modern hotel in Vienna. We have phones, electricity and bathrooms!’

The two men had surely solved the problem about naming the hotel. It was to be an English name – in those days all the rage across the continent. We don’t know why they called it Bristol. But this English city has so many important ties to modern mankind that its name suits a new hotel. In 1497 Sebastian Cabot set sail from there to become the first Englishman to step onto the continent that was later christened America. The real Robinson Crusoe hailed from Bristol. He returned there after his exile on the island of Juan Fernandez. Also, the first steam boat was built in Bristol. The coat of arms of the city of Bristol carries the words Virtute et Industria, which roughly translates as strength and diligence. There was a Bristol in Rome, which was only open during the summer (as were most international hotels of the Eternal City). And there was an old fashioned Bristol in Paris, which was the haunt of the Prince of Wales. ‘Bristol’ appeared to be just the right name. 20


Vienna 1892

‘First Class Hotel, fine restaurant with outstanding French, Viennese and Polish cuisine. Separate room at civilized rates!’ Carl Wolf had an exclusive contract with the Bristol, his ‘Old Pilsenezer Beer’ was also advertised.

Let’s return to the big day: Carl Wolf bade his farewells to Kührer. It was the day that the Hotel Bristol opened its doors for the first time. ‘I’m sure you’ve still got plenty of work to do, dear Kührer. My wife and I are looking forward to coming to the reception tonight.’ ‘The beer is chilled. I have to go across now anyway to see that the new Bösendorfer is placed in the right spot. My compliments, Herr Wolf.” Wolf stepped onto the Kärntnerring. His gaze fell on a trek of horse-drawn carriages and oxcarts, which were blocking one of the lanes as they parked at the corner in front of house number 7. A small balcony overlooked the road. All around its balustrade a sign read ‘Hotel Bristol’. A group of men was lifting a piano from the platform of one of the carts. The horses had their heads buried deep into their nosebags and weren’t bothered by all that was going on around them. At the corner of the house, three workers were busily putting up another sign. Its diagonal lettering also read ‘Hotel Bristol’ and advertised the ‘finest cuisine’. That was a promise the Bristol could easily keep since the chef was already in the modern new kitchen busily directing his team. Wolf nodded with satisfaction. For a small hotel, it offered a lot of comfort. Over recent months he and Kührer had sat over the drawings more than 21


Hotel Bristol Vienna

once. The rooms were furnished with the most modern English furniture. There was a reading room with small tables and reading lamps, a smoker’s lounge and a salon for the ladies. The English were very fond of that sort of thing and the Americans would like it as well. Wolf was convinced that the hotel would be a success. At the final count, the largest of the three parts of the hotel that he shared with the other silent investors was his. Wolf passed the bureau de change of Mr Wiener, a banker from Prague, and entered the k u k. flower shop Fossati am Ring, two doors down from the new hotel to buy flowers for his wife. Then he took a hackney back home. One more glance at the new Hotel Bristol. Shame that we only have the small house on the corner, thought Wolf. A larger hotel with more rooms would generate so much more profit. Maybe one day we’ll manage to get the neighbouring building belonging to Count Hoyos-Sprintzenstein. We could combine the two buildings into one large hotel. He should talk to the Count. Wolf had already managed to convince Albert Klein, Edler von Wiesenberg, who owned the house behind the Bristol. Soon he would move the office of his Alt-Pilsenetzer Brewery to Maximilianstrasse (nowadays Mahlerstrasse) 8, directly behind the hotel. That way he was right at the centre of the action and was able to control Andreas Kührer and his investment. Eventually Wolf bought the house. On the first and fourth floor he broke the walls through to join it to the original hotel building. Years later he would expand into the neighbouring buildings in Maximilianstrasse. If it was impossible to buy the entire neighbouring building, people made do with a certain number of floors. These floors were then connected to the hotel by breaking through the walls of the building. This was common practice in European capitals around that time. That is how the Bristol grew – almost organically – building by building, floor by floor until it became the mightiest hotel complex in the city.

22


Vienna 1892

Advertisement on Saturday, 25 June 1892, announcing the grand opening of the Hotel Bristol for the next day, Sunday.

The Restaurant Monopole finances the Bristol. In 1892 restaurant owner Andreas Kührer took his first steps on the road to becoming an important force in the catering business. Both his restaurant at Stephansplatz and the Restaurant Monopole at Kärntnerring were doing well. Thus, he decided to turn the old private house opposite the Monopole into a hotel. In 1949 Andreas Kührer’s former restaurant Metropole became the home to British Airways formerly known as BEA (British European Airways) 23


Hotel Bristol Vienna

City or Duke? It is somewhat difficult to document exactly why a hotel is called Bristol. In fact this is a dilemma all Bristol hotels around the world suffered from. Many of them claim that they were allowed to name their house after Frederick Augustus Hervey, the fourth Earl of Bristol. It has been said that the Earl only gave permission for the use of his title to those hotels that could measure up to his high standards. This is of course nonsense since the majority of these hotels opened their doors over 100 years after the Earl had died. Furthermore, these hotels also carry the coat of arms of the city of Bristol, a city, not a travelling aristocrat.

The coat of arms of the Hotel Bristol in Vienna went through various stages. The first one strongly resembled the coat of arms of the City of Bristol. (see right page, top). In 1923 it was updated to a more modern version in Art Nouveau style. For the first time lions were used instead of unicorns.

We can assume that the early Bristol The lions later changed back to hotels (Rome 1870, Vienna 1892) unicorns. The current coat of arms served as examples to the hotels that is once again graced by lions. opened in later years (Warsaw 1901, Oslo 1920, Paris 1925 plus around 50 further hotels across Europe). They all proudly carry the coat of arms of the City of Bristol. The often quoted connection to the Earl of Bristol is no more than a bad PR-gag. As you can see, the hotel trade is full of surprises and inventions. Until recently this story had been supported by many Bristol Hotels and sold to guests as fact.

24


Hotel Bristol Vienna

Current coats of arms of the City of Bristol (top). The coats of arms depicted below date back to 1900.

Frederick Augustus Hervey (1730–1803) Earl of Bristol and Bishop of Derry The Earl and bishop was an eccentric traveller. Nevertheless, for the hotels to have named their houses with his consent, he should have lived one hundred years later.

Hotel Bristol 1923

1932, and again in 1975

If someone really had named their hotel after the Earl of Bristol, they should have used this coat of arms. 2000

25


Hotel Bristol Vienna

Carl Wolf got what he wanted. However, before he could open the most modern hotel in Vienna he had to renovate.

Before c This picture of the somewhat dilapidated Palace Hoyos-Sprintzenstein (Kärntnerring No. 5) dates back to November 1897. The signs above the ground floor advertise the opening of the addition to the Hotel Bristol for February 1898. On the right hand side of the palace – the old Hotel Bristol. To the left, the private house belonging to Herr von Klein (No. 3). During the following years one of the floors of this house would be rented. The floor would serve as a passageway between the old and the new Bristol. The ground floor of the building on the left already houses shops, unthinkable for the Hoyos-Sprintzenstein palace – for the moment at least.

26


Hotel Bristol Vienna

K채rntnerring No. 5

No. 3

No. 7

d After The extended hotel Bristol. Palace HoyosSprintzenstein has been integrated. During the summer of 1905, the noble gents hairdresser London House moved to the corner of the Bristol. Horse drawn coaches waited out front. In 1898 the hotel already had 200 rooms. In 1906 the number had increased to 235 including 30 apartments of two or three rooms, comprising a hall, a salon, a bathroom, a dining room and a toilet.

Drawing of a new entrance at No 5

27


Hotel Bristol Vienna

Vienna’s most famous hotels on a city centre map, dating back to 1895. Still current: Hotel Sacher (yellow dot above the opera, not yet mentioned as a hotel), Bristol, Grand Hotel and Imperial.

28


Hotel Bristol Vienna

Kärntnerring No. 1

3

5

7

Bristol 1945 – Bristol 1916 – 1945 Bristol 1898 – 1916 Bristol 1892 – 1898

Crossroads at the Opera (1895) The coloured lines show how the Bristol has grown since 1892. Between 1916 and 1945 it was at its largest. Unfortunately, a World War II bomb destroyed the old part of the hotel. Following pages: Ringstrasse at the corner of Kärntnerstrasse looking North, with the opera house to the very right. Insets: Bristol correspondence cards. 29


Hotel Bristol Vienna

30


Hotel Bristol Vienna

31


Hotel Bristol Vienna

From 4 October 1883 the Orient Express belonging to the Compagnie Internationale des Wagon Lits travelled between Paris and Vienna. This is what a CIWL dining carriage of the Central European line looked like. Heavy candle sticks, crystal and silver give us a good idea of how luxurious this method of travel was.

32


THE MOST FAMOUS HOTELS IN THE WORLD

HOTEL

BRISTOL VIENNA

ANDREAS AUGUSTIN

We have prepared some more pages for you to preview.

The book can be ordered from www.famoushotels.org. It has 160 pages, is bound in real cloth, with gold stamping, you see the dust-jacket above.


Hotel Bristol Vienna

Hotel Bristol, I. Kärntner Ring 5. The fashionable residence of the elite of European and American society, situated in the most central and convenient part of the city. 200 reception and bedrooms. 270 front windows. Private suites of apartments, including drawing, bed and bathroom. Magnificent public halls such as dining, reading, ladies, conversation, smoking and billiard rooms. French restaurant, musical performances during luncheon and dinner. Anglo-American bar. Central heating. Original Otis-lifts. N.B. The establishment is entirely fitted with the latest modern comforts and improvements. Agards Guide to Austria

The author of ‘Society Recollections in Paris and Vienna, 1879 – 1904’ was Karl Hirschfeld, a well know satiric writer. However, there was nothing to joke about the high prices at the hotel. The directors of the Bristol preferred the comments to the left, published in the US guide Agards.

a long time the only – Viennese hotel prominently exhibiting and thus supporting the work of one of these young artists. The other luxury hotels preferred the more elaborate style of historicism. The palais had become the new centre-point of the hotel. This was where the main entrance was now located. The layout was new and far more elegant than before. Many of the palais’ salons were kept in their original state. Its elegant vestibule was perfect as an entrance hall to the hotel. The Bristol was now the most modern hotel in Vienna and the palace was its central axis. The new and old buildings together were of such enormous dimensions that they had the second highest electricity bills in Vienna, topped only by those of the Emperor’s Hofburg. On 3 March 1898, the Duchess of Württemberg – accompanied by Wolf – was the first guest to ascend the newly renovated staircase. The Duchess of Bedford resided here as well as the Khedive of Egypt, Ferdinand d’Orleans; Maria, Princess of Sachsen-Meiningen; the Duchess Marie de Ferrari; Ernst, Prince of Saxony and Weimar-Eisenach and the Duke of Saxony with his family.

40


1900

The Palais makes its Entrance The elegant staircase was at the former palais of Hoyos Sprintzenstein. The photograph is one of the earliest examples of hotel advertisement, showing the standards of service to expect. 41


Hotel Bristol Vienna

60


1910

Hans Stalzer’s painting depicting a dinner at the Bristol in 1910. On the copy below, we have marked the relevant people with numbers. 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. 15. 16. 17. 18. 19. 20. 21. 22. 23. 24. 25. 26. 27. 28. 29. 30. 31. 32. 33. 34. 35. 36.

Baroness Thyssen-Bornemisza Baron Thyssen-Bornemisza Sir Fred Duncan Baron Twickel Baron Herzogenbusch Baroness Herzogenbusch, née Baroness Giesl Regis Oliveira Karaman Khan Diplomats’ table Mr Varé Marquis Moreira-Marquès Stanislaus Count Szeptycki Archduke Franz Salvator Cavalry Captain Count Esterházy General Baron Kirchbach Colonel Szontagh Alfred Count Brusselle General Count Huyn Count Theodor Zichy Kommerzialrat Hesske (at that time still waiter) August von Dörr Mrs von Dörr Son of Count Karl Esterházy Wife of Count Karl Esterházy Count Lonyay Count Karl Esterházy Baron von Gutmann-Gelse Alfred Grünfeld Mr Sack (at the time waiter at the Hotel Bristol) Baron von Gutmann-Gelse (brother) Lighting manufacturer Brünner Mrs Brünner Countess Szâpâry Count Paul Szâpâry Mrs Arthur Wolf Arthur Wolf Leopold Robl (waiter)

}

Following pages: The charming roof-top suites are the secret tip among all Bristol visitors.

61


Hotel Bristol Vienna

50


1910

51


Hotel Bristol Vienna

60


1910

Hans Stalzer’s painting depicting a dinner at the Bristol in 1910. On the copy below, we have marked the relevant people with numbers. 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. 15. 16. 17. 18. 19. 20. 21. 22. 23. 24. 25. 26. 27. 28. 29. 30. 31. 32. 33. 34. 35. 36.

Baroness Thyssen-Bornemisza Baron Thyssen-Bornemisza Sir Fred Duncan Baron Twickel Baron Herzogenbusch Baroness Herzogenbusch, née Baroness Giesl Regis Oliveira Karaman Khan Diplomats’ table Mr Varé Marquis Moreira-Marquès Stanislaus Count Szeptycki Archduke Franz Salvator Cavalry Captain Count Esterházy General Baron Kirchbach Colonel Szontagh Alfred Count Brusselle General Count Huyn Count Theodor Zichy Kommerzialrat Hesske (at that time still waiter) August von Dörr Mrs von Dörr Son of Count Karl Esterházy Wife of Count Karl Esterházy Count Lonyay Count Karl Esterházy Baron von Gutmann-Gelse Alfred Grünfeld Mr Sack (at the time waiter at the Hotel Bristol) Baron von Gutmann-Gelse (brother) Lighting manufacturer Brünner Mrs Brünner Countess Szâpâry Count Paul Szâpâry Mrs Arthur Wolf Arthur Wolf Leopold Robl (waiter)

}

Following pages: The charming roof-top suites are the secret tip among all Bristol visitors.

61


Hotel Bristol Vienna

On 22 February 1926 the ‘America Austria Society Vienna’ held a gala dinner honouring Albert H. Washburn, American Ambassador to the republic of Austria. 86


1918–1938

From the Bristol’s Guestbook

Marie Bonaparte, great-grand-niece of Napoleon, princess of Greece and Denmark, stayed at the Bristol. She spent time in Vienna as a patient of the famous Professor Sigmund Freud.

John Galsworthy (1867 – 1933), English novelist and playwright arrived in 1926. His works include The Forsyte Saga (1906—1921), A Modern Comedy and End of the Chapter. He won the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1932.

‘Someone has arranged for me a lecture in a very big hall – unfortunately for me I have a big reputation and people expect from me a big effect, a sensation in a wholesale quality. What a waste!’ wrote Rabindranath Tagore (1861 – 1941) on 13 July 1926 on a Bristol letterhead*. The Bengali polymath – being the first non-European to win the 1913 Nobel Prize in Literature – was a mesmerising representative of the Indian culture whose influence and popularity internationally perhaps could only be compared to that of Gandhi. He returned and met Sigmund Freud in October 1926. Tagore’s opinion regarding Freudian thought gradually changed from severe criticism and a near complete rejection to appreciation. * Selected letters of Rabindranath Tagore: Rabindranath Tagore, Krishna Dutta, Andrew Robinson

87


Hotel Bristol Vienna

Friday, 11 September: Each day the Bristol was crowded by people of all classes. Although members of the police stopped people from actually standing there, they couldn’t prevent them from taking a walk along the Korso. Thus, hundreds of curious onlookers circled the small space in front of the Bristol, which extended from Sirkecke up to house No. 7. They took care not to lose sight of the main entrance in the middle. The phone booth on the Ringstrasse directly in front of the main entrance While the British press steadfastly ignored the existence was a popular vantage point. It was of Wallis Simpson, an American interesting to note how people seemed to magazine broke the implicit search for phone numbers and how their code of honour. conversations became longer and longer. The newspaper ‘Neues Wiener Tagblatt’ wrote that it can’t have been easy for people to search for phone numbers while at the same time trying to look out the window. It was even more astonishing that the people in front of the phone booth all of a sudden seemed hardly bothered by the long wait (whenever people really had to make a phone call, they were allowed to jump the queue.) Saturday, 12 September 1936: His Majesty went on a small shopping spree in the city centre and bought Tyrolean clothes. He then went on to play golf. Sunday, 13 September: Another eventful day in Vienna for the British King. He first visited the clinic of Professor Heinrich Neumann, then he enjoyed lunch and a piece of Sachertorte at the Sacher. He went on to Höhenstraße and then back to the Bristol where he watched films of his visit to Austria the previous year. In the evening he went to the Westbahnhof, where his train departed for Zurich at 20.35 hrs. From Zurich a plane took him straight back to England. 124


1918–1938

Edward VIII in front of the Bristol. Behind him to the right the legendary concierge Adolf Gabriel. Sometimes his Royal Highness had a Daimler waiting for him at the rear entrance at the staff porter’s gate to escape to unknown destinations.

On 11 December 1936, the Prince of Wales abdicated. His Empire had shown nothing but disapproval towards his plans to marry Mrs Ernest ‘Wallis’ Simpson, a bourgeois woman who had already been married twice. But his private happiness was more important to him than his duties as a statesman. On 12 December his brother Prince Albert Friedrich Arthur came to the throne. His first act was to give his brother a duchy. Thus, Edward became the Duke of Windsor. During those hours the new Duke was already on his way back to Austria. He arrived at Westbahnhof on 14 December and from there he made his way to castle Enzesfeld belonging to the Rothschild family. On 3 June 1937 he married Wallis. In 1949 he became governor of the Bahamas and revisited Vienna. This time it was an official visit and he arrived together with his beloved wife Wallis. 125


Hotel Bristol Vienna

The annual gala dinner of the Wiener Renn- und Kampagnereiter Gesellschaft, with Prince Kinsky presiding over the evening (black hair, moustache, right under the vase between the columns). The prince died under uncertain circumstances at the hotel. 132


Hotel Bristol Vienna

133


Hotel Bristol Vienna

State Opera House and Hotel Bristol by Viktor Pipal (1887– 1971), an Austrian painter. The painting can be found at the Bristol’s mezzanine floor.

140


Contemporary Bristol

1955: Austria was free again, but the country only felt truly free when two of its most important cultural institutions were back in operation. The famous Burgtheater reopened on 15 October and the State Opera (to the left on this painting) on 5 November with Beethoven’s Fidelio, his only opera, written in Vienna. This rang in a new season of opera and theatre performances, the first highlight after the war, and substantial business for all Viennese hotels. Right on time, one day before the opera reopened the Operastreet-crossing in front of the Bristol Vienna’s first underground passage opened. Its new escalators became a tourist attraction and weren’t working half of the time due to overloading.

A timeless reminder of the war years: we believe that these are the traces of rifle butts, scattered all over the handrail of the Bristol’s elegant staircase. 141


Hotel Bristol Vienna

General manager Oscar del Campo (half Spanish, half German) welcomes ‘his’ King, Juan Carlos of Spain. Below: the Duke of Edinburgh, Prince Philip, Catherine Deneuve and Henry Kissinger. ‘La’ Deneuve was at the Bristol to film the story of Marie Bonaparte, whose grandfather was the principal real-estate developer of Monte Carlo who had left her a great fortune. In 1925 Marie checked into the Bristol and consulted Sigmund Freud for treatment.

Maharaja Bhupinder Singh of Patiala (right) stayed at the Bristol in 1928, accompanied by the youngest of his five wives and his five daughters. He had reserved almost a whole floor of the hotel. The ladies enjoyed shopping, the chief purchases being leather goods and various field and opera glasses. An epicure from top to toe, the Maharaja was so impressed by the service at the Bristol that he, when he left by train for Budapest, Munich and Lucerne, expressed the wish that the head cook and attendants at tables should accompany him on the journey to cook and to serve in his dining car. Needless to say the wishes of this honoured guest were complied with.

154


Hotel Bristol Vienna

Who’s Who at the Bristol Royals & Politics & Aristocracy HRH Alfonso XIII, King of Spain (1901) HRH George II, King of the Hellenes HRH Wilhelmina of the Netherlands HRH Dom Manuel II, King of Portugal HRH Queen Silvia of Sweden HRH Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh HRH Juan Carlos, King of Spain (2008) HRH Felipe, Prince of Asturias HRH Umberto of Italy HRH Princess Mary, Princess Royal and Countess of Harewood and Henry Lascelles, 6th Earl of Harewood HRH Prince George, Duke of Kent HRH Prince Paul of Greece HRH Prince Mihai of Rumania HRH Prince Eugen of Sweden TRH Prince Juan and Princess Maria of Asturia HRH Prince Louis of Monaco HRH Princess Marie of Greece, nee Bonaparte HRH Princess Juliana of the Netherlands with Prince Consort, HRH Prince Bernhard of Lippe-Detmold (on their honeymoon as “Count and Countess Sternberg”)

HM Phra Bat Prajadhipok, former Rama VII, King of Siam TH, the Maharajas of Alwar, Baroda, Bhavnagar, Bhopol, Bikaneer, Jaipur, Gwalior, Kapurthala, Kutch, Mysore, Patiala, Tripura. HIH Princess Maria of Piedmont, Crown Princess of Italy Prince Philipp of Wuerttemberg and Elisabeth of Austria Henri, Count of Paris PM Recep Tayyip Erdoğan (Turkey, 2008) PM Ivo Sanader (Croatia) PM Hashim Thaçi (Kosovo) Kossuth Ferenc Roosevelt Theodore President Abelardo Rodríguez Luján (Mexico) HH the Sultan of Johore HH the Nawab of Rampur HH the Crown Prince of Kapurthala H.E. Madame Darcy S. Vargas Anan Kofi Ashton Catherine Aznar José María López Lübke Heinrich Schärf Adolf La Fontaine, Oskar Feymann Werner Bhupinder Singh, Maharaja of Patiala Makya Bahadur, Maharaja of Tripura Dr. Michael Hainisch Faisal, King of Irak

Prakash Amar, Maharaja of Sirmur Frederick Sleigh Roberts, 1st Earl Roberts Lady Edwina Cynthia Annette Mountbatten Victor, Prince Napoléon Franz Prince Liechtenstein Axel Prince Denmark Ulrich Prince Kinsky Tassilo Prince Festetics Georg Prince Festetics Prince of Braganza Max Egon Prince Fürstenberg Laszlo Count Szechenyi Alfons Baron Rotschild Antal Count Sigray Anton Count Appony Count Louis of Monaco Lady Londonderry Carl Count Lonyay Count Palffy Geza Count Andrassy Princess Elle di Torre e Tasso Prince Elim Demidoff Prince Napoleon Bonaparte Marquis de Talleyrand, HH the Duc de Guise Duchess of Marlborough, née Vanderbilt Duchess of Taylerand, née Gould HH Princess Violet of Montenegro Duchess of Westminster Prince Ernst von Hohenberg Duke of Sachse-Coburg-Gotha HH Prince of Hesse Count Albert Bismarck Admiral William McDougall Right Hon. Lord Douglas Eltisley Hon. James St. Clair Erskine ... to be continued

155


Hotel Bristol Vienna

Left: Barbara Streisand; Harry Belafonte; former hotel manager Hochfilzer & filmproducer/ director Franz Antel & Joan Collins; German president Heinrich Lübke & Austrian president Adolf Schärf during a 1960s visit. Right: Maurice Chevallier; former general manager Thomas Schön & Kofi Anan, chief concierge Dieter Ludewig takes good care of opera couple Angela Gheorghiu and Roberto Alagna; Arnold Schwarzenegger welcomed by assistant manager Lisa Nassler.

156


Who’s Who

Bianca Jagger, Rudolf Buchbinder with head concierge Dieter Ludewig and movie star Tim Curry

Artists and other VIPs Adorf Mario Ahern Berty Alagna Roberto Albers Hans D’Albert Eugen Alexander Peter Alice Allen Woody Ambesser Axel von Aslan Raoul Aznar-Lopez José Maria Backhaus Wilhelm Backstreet Boys Baez Joan Bahr-Mildenburg Anna Baltsa Agnes Bambton Rose Bardot Brigitte Barker Ronnie Bassey Shirley Baumann Rene (DJ Bobo) Becker Boris Berger Senta Bernstein Leonard Besant Annie Biolek Alfred Böhm Alfred Bongartz Peter Boskowsky Willi Brice Pierre Brolly Brian Brown Michael M. (Nobel Prize medicine) Buchbinder Rudolf Bülow Vicco von, Loriot Burg Monika Burghauser Hugo Burmester Willy Burton Richard Caron Leslie

Carradine David Caruso Enrico Casals Pablo Chaljapine Fedor Chapman Roger Chatschaturjan Aram Chevalier Maurice Chiara Maria Clavier Christian Clergue Lucian Cohen Leonard Collina Pierluigi Cook Frederick Cook James Cosby Bill Curtis Tony Curry Tim D’Abo Myriam Daft Douglas Dalton Timothy Deneuve Catherine Desney Ivan Dornhelm Robert Drache Heinz Duse Eleonore Eckert – Rotholz Alice Egger Kiepura Martha Eggerth Martha Eisenmann Peter Eisler Edmund Eybner Richard Fairbanks Douglas Falco Festetics Georg Fischer Joschka Flagstad Kirsten Forst Willi Freud Matthew Fröbe Gert Fröhlich Gustav Fry Christopher

Galsworthy John Galway James Gershwin George Gheorghiu Angela Gibson Hugh Glas Uschi Glemnitz Reinhard Gobert Boy Goisern Hubert von Grögl Rikki Guilbert Yvette Gustafson Nancy Gwen Stefani Haddoway Nestor Hailey Arthur Handke Peter Harbou Thea von Harrimann Edward H. HartsfieldHenry Hasse O. E. Hauptmann Gerhart Heesters Johannes Heifetz Jascha Herzog Roman Herzog Werner Hörbiger Attila Hörbiger Christiane Horowitz Vladimir Horvath Ödön von Hughes Charles Evan Jagger Bianca Jannings Emil Janowitz Gundula Jennewein Josef Jones Sidney Kalman Imre Kanawa Kiri de Karajan Herbert von Kauka Rolf Kehlmann Daniel Kelsen Hans

157


Hotel Bristol Vienna

Rose Kennedy, Paul and Linda McCartney, Leonard Bernstein, Ibn Saud Kersch Gusti Kinsky Klaus Kissinger Henry (2008) Knef Hildegard Köhner Susan Kollo René Korngold Erich Wolfgang Kreisler Fritz Kwan Nancy Lang Fritz Lavi Daliah Leoncavallo Ruggero Lehar Franz Lemmon Jack Leuwerick Ruth Lloyd Harold Loewe Frederick Maazel Lorin Mahler Anna Mahler Gustav Marteau Henry Mascagni Pietro Masina Fellini Giulietta Mathieu Mireille May Gisela (2009) McCartney Paul und Linda Melba Nellie Mengelberg Wilhelm Menjou Adolphe Menuhin Yehudi Messner Reinhold Miller Arthur Mitchell Cameron Mittelholzer Walter Morgan John Pierpont Muti Riccardo Myhre Wencke Netrebko Anna Nemeth Maria Nijinsky Vaslav, Romola & Kyra Nitsch Hermann

158

Noack Barbara Novak Kim O Brien Hugh Pallenberg Max Peary Robert Edwin Petit Roland Pfitzner Hans Picasso Paloma Polanski Roman Puccini Giaccomo Quinn Anthony Raabe Max Rachmaninoff Sergei Raimondi Ruggiero Ramazotti Eros Rampling Charlotte Renier Charles Rezzori Gregor von Richie Lionel Riefenstahl Leni Robles José Gil Rockefeller John.D. III Rolland Romain Roswenge Helge Roth Josef Rubinstein Anton Rubinstein Arthur Sauer Emil von Schenk Otto Schlöndorf Volker Schuba Trixi Schwarzenegger Arnold Schweiger Til Seisenbacher Peter Sellers Peter Serrano Rossita Shackleton Ernest Shakira Simmel Johannes Mario Simon Paul Söderbaum Kristina Sommer Elke

Spira Camilla Stein Peter Steinhoff Hans Stewart Jackie Stiglitz Joseph Sting Stolz Robert Strauss Richard Streich Rita Streisand Barbara Swift Hutton Szabó Istvan Szakall Szöke Taddei Giuseppe Tappert Horst Tarantino Quentin Tauber Richard Taylor Cecil Te Kanawa Kiri Tiller Nadja Toscanini Arturo Tremper Will Tschechowa Vera Tutu Desmond Wecker Konstantin Weingartner Dr. Felix von Weinheber Josef Wellner Armin Wenders Wim Wepper Elmar Wepper Fritz Werner Margot Wessely Paula White Horse Eagle Honorary Big Chief Williams Tennessee Wood Natalie Ysage Eugène ... to be continued


Who’s Who

Suites at the Bristol Prince of Wales August Sirk Chinesischer Salon Enrico Caruso Giacomo Puccini Arturo Toscanini Rachmaninoff Yehudi Menuhin (1916–99) came to Vienna after the war and stayed at the Bristol in 1946. Today, Suite 465 is named after him.

Yehudi Menuhin

At the Helm of the Viennese Opera – immortalised at the Bristol* Franz Freiherr von Dingelstedt 1867–1870 Johann Ritter von Herbeck 1870–1875 Franz Ritter von Jauner 1875–1880 Karl Mayerhofer, Gustav Walter, Emil Scaria 1880 (20.6.–31.12.1886) Wilhelm Jahn 1881–1897 Gustav Mahler 1897–1907 Felix von Weingartner 1908–1911 and 19351936 Hans Gregor 1911–1918 Franz Schalk 1918–1929 (1919–1924 together with Richard Strauss) Clemens Krauss 1929–1934 Erwin Kerber 1936–1940 Heinrich Karl Strohm 1940–1941 Walter Thomas 1941 (1.2.–31.3.) Ernst August Schneider 1941 (1.4.–31.8.)

Lothar Müthel 1941–1942 Karl Böhm 1943–1945, 1954–1956 Franz Salmhofer 1945–1954 Herbert von Karajan 1956–1964 Egon Hilbert 1964–1968 Heinrich Reif-Gintl 1968–1972 Rudolf Gamsjäger 1972–1976 Egon Seefehlner 1976–1982 Lorin Maazel 1982–1984 Egon Seefehlner 1984–1986 Claus Helmut Drese 1986–1991 Eberhard Waechter 1991–1992 Ioan Holender 1992–2010 * At the Bristol Hotel all rooms facing the opera have been named after managers of the opera.

159


Now in Vienna there’s ten pretty women There’s a shoulder where Death comes to cry There’s a lobby with nine hundred windows There’s a tree where the doves go to die There’s a piece that was torn from the morning And it hangs in the Gallery of Frost Ay, Ay, Ay, Ay Take this waltz, take this waltz Take this waltz with the clamp on its jaws Take This Waltz Leonard Cohen Guest of the Hotel Bristol

Vienna Hotel Bristol  

the story of one of the most famous hotels of Vienna, the capital of Austria. If you wish to purchase a copy kindly visit the link below.

Read more
Read more
Similar to
Popular now
Just for you