Savoyen, a view onto Vienna’s Belvedere Palace
Landstrasse, Vienna’s third postal district, lies to the east of the city centre, just outside the ring road. The district, with its mediaeval origins, is home to important monuments, embassies and historic buildings. One of these is the Belvedere, the royal residence built in the early seventeenth century by Prince Eugene of Savoy on a hillside that at that time stood outside the town itself. Here, at 16 Rennweg and with direct access to the Belvedere’s Botanical Gardens, stands the Austria Trend Hotel Savoyen Vienna, a superior four star hotel managed by the Austria Trend Hotels & Resorts chain and part of a complex owned since 2004 by the real estate investment company CA Immo. The original structure, designed and built between 1888 and 1892 by Heinrich Köchlin for the headquarters of the Österreichischen Staatsdruckerei (Austrian state printing works), was rebuilt by CA Immo between 2005 and 2007 to a project by Ernst Hoffmann involving an investment of 90 million euro. The work consisting of an initial phase involving the demolition of the rear of the old building, to which additions had been made over the years, leaving only the historic facade on the Rennweg and two short lateral buttresses with support functions. The second phase involved rebuilding the demolished section from scratch, restoring the vestibule while preserving its architectural features, and creating a connecting section between the two units. The current building stands on a 5,450 square metre plot in the shape of a rectangular trapezium, the oblique side of which is defined by the Rennweg. A large central rectangular atrium allowed the architect to achieve an optimal distribution of 30,000 square metres of useful space (22,000 square metres for the hotel and 8,000 square metres for the offices) both on the four external sides and on the interiors. The vestibule is reminiscent of the entrance to a nineteenth-century hotel. The door and window openings terminate in double arches, the first Romanesque round arch enclosed by the second Gothic pointed arch, the tip of which leads the eye to the large coffer on the ceiling. Cornices, finishes and decorations reinforce the illusion of a fin de siècle hotel. On entering the lobby, the perspective changes entirely, giving way to a sequence of highly modern spaces that stand out for their elegant design and soft tones. The floor in the lobby, partially connected with that of the vestibule as though to simulate a convergence of two different historical periods, is paved with Glamour tiles from Leonardo Ceramica, laid in a pattern consisting of three different sizes. The hotel can meet the needs of the most demanding customers and is perfectly equipped for the organisation of congresses. The hub of all the hotel activities is the atrium with its minimalist design. Rising for six floors and flooded with natural light, it provides access to the other areas of the hotel. These include the Ball Room, a multipurpose hall extending over more than thousand square metres fitted with the most advanced technical equipment and seating up to a thousand people, as well as seven flexible smaller conference rooms (25 -150 square metres) located on various floors. There are 309 spacious guest rooms (from 32 to 60 square metres in size), including 43 suites and 70 executive rooms, all with sophisticated design and featuring the amenities typical of a hotel of this standard. The vital functions of the hotel are entirely controlled by a sophisticated system based on complex centralised electronics. To save energy, the temperature in the rooms is automatically lowered to a minimum level in the absence of guests. The standard air conditioning mode is reactivated when the door opening card is inserted.