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Secret Vienna Blog


The story of the Hosenträgerhaus

At the corner of the Universitätsstrasse and the Garnisongasse in the district of Alsergrund there is a house with a peculiar name: Hosenträgerhaus (literally the “suspenders haus”). The architect of the house was Otto Wagner, it was built in 1887/1888, and it appears that the origins of the nickname Hosenträger are found in the vertical…

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November 7, 2019

The story of the Billrothhaus

The Frankgasse in Alsergrund (Vienna’s 9th district) may not be a household name unless you live in the area. But on this street there is an organization with a long history that has its home, namely the Gesellschaft der Ärzte in Wien (College of Physicians in Vienna). Established in 1837 with the goal of promoting…

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August 9, 2019

The story of the WUK

From bike flea markets and repair stations to concerts and general nightlife, the WUK has become a much-loved and indelible part of the Viennese landscape. Sadly, it wasn’t always so, and its survival was by no means ensured. The WUK originally served as a factory for machines and locomotives from the time it was constructed…

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October 16, 2018

From Marshland to Cobblestoned Cafes: the Servitenviertel

It is the one of the most charming areas of Vienna today, but it would have been almost totally unrecognizable in the past. What we now call the Servitenviertel named after the large church and monastery around which the neighborhood is built, began life as a series of islands in the marsh lands of the…

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April 9, 2018

Kolingasse: From Military Grandeur to Forgotten Alleyway

Kolingasse is a street you have probably walked past many times without thinking twice, but the next time you are there, take a moment to notice how much wider and grander it is than other similar streets in the area. In fact, the word ‘gasse’ doesn’t begin to do justice to what is in reality…

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December 14, 2017

The story of the Volksoper

When you google “Vienna” and “Opera” chances are that you will be directed to the famous State Opera. The one that was built on the grounds of the city walls and was initially known as the “K.K. Hof-Opernhaus” (The Royal Opera). But there is another opera in Vienna, which may be less known for some,…

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November 15, 2017

The story of the Schwarzspanierstrasse

If you have taken the trams 37, 38, 40, 41, or 42 from the station Schottentor, you will likely remember the name of the first stop: “Schwarzspanierstrasse” (The “Black Spaniard street” in English). Don’t you think the name sounds peculiar? In the 1620s, members of the order of Saint Benedict came to Vienna and built…

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July 18, 2017

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