Description of Hofburg Palace
Hofburg Palace is one of the most popular attractions in the
Austrian capital of Vienna. It is hard to imagine that this
magnificent Habsburg royal dynasty palace was originally found as a
13th century castle. Nothing is left from the grim medieval military
fortifications. Instead it was replaced by a complex of beautiful
buildinds, courtyards and monuments. Hofburg Palace have been the
seat of Austrian emperors for over six centuries until their final
demise in 1918 then the end of World War I spelled the end for most
of remaining absolute monarchies in Europe. Since 1945, it has been
the official residence of the Austrian Federal President. It houses
the largest part of the Austrian National Library as well as various
museums (including the Albertina) and the Federal Monuments Office.
The irregular building complex, which has grown over the course of
about seven centuries, also includes two sacred buildings: the
Hofburgkapelle and the Augustinerkirche.
Building of the Old Hofburg Renaissance building is a former
Imperial Palace that once served as the official residence of
the Imperial Habsburg family. Renaissance chapel is famous for
its Vienna Boys' Choir that was originally found in 1498. Its
members included such famous composers and Haydn and Schubert.
They perform on Sundays and major holidays.
Ceremonial Swiss Gate leads to the inner area of In- der- Burg.
It once staged tournaments, military parades as well as public
trials over criminals. A statue of Emperor Franz I stands in the
center of the square. Surrounding buildings include the Palace
of Amalia, State Chancellery and Leopold's building. Outer Old
Hofburg palace is encircled by the square of Joseph surrounded
by the National Library, Shtalburg Palce and the Spanish Riding
The building of the New Hofburg was built just before the onset
of the First World War. In 1918 Austrian monarchy fell along
with other royal families taht started this war.
History of Hofburg
Documented for the first time under King Rudolf I
of Habsburg in 1279, construction began as early as the first half
of the 13th century among the Babenbergers. Duke Leopold VI. have
laid. The first expansion took place under the Bohemian King Ottokar
II Přemysl. The complex - anything but a representative residence -
was part of the city fortifications with defensive towers and moats.
When Emperor Ferdinand I moved his residence to Vienna in the
middle of the 16th century, the expansion began and the castle
became the Hofburg. Existing tracts were expanded and numerous new
ones were added, a tradition that continues to this day. A tour of
the Hofburg is also a tour of the history of art: wings of the most
varied epochs, from the Gothic style of the Middle Ages to the
Renaissance, the Baroque from the 17th and 18th centuries, but also
historicist wings from the 19th century to create contemporary
interior fittings from the 20th and 21st centuries.
This oldest castle in the shape of a
square corresponds approximately to today's Schweizerhof. The Gothic
chapel (rebuilt in the 15th century) as well as the clergy and the
secular treasury (both administratively belong to the
Kunsthistorisches Museum) are located there, the latter including
the insignia of the Holy Roman Empire (imperial jewels) and the
Austrian Empire . The Hofmusikkapelle is also based there.
This Schweizerhof was rebuilt in the Renaissance style at the time
of Emperor Charles V by his brother, the Roman-German King Ferdinand
(from 1558 Emperor Ferdinand I).
Swiss gate is particularly well-known, on which the titles of
Emperor Ferdinand I are listed and the insignia of the non-woven
order are depicted. This gate including painting was built by Pietro
Ferrabosco in 1552. The Schweizerhofbrunnen from 1552 with the
imperial eagle is in a side niche of the gate. The pool is made of
hard, white imperial stone from the imperial quarry. The fountain
formed the end of a water pipe that had already been built in 1534
and was led from the suburb of St. Ulrich into the castle.
For a long time, the courtyard kitchen was
housed below this wing. Overall, this part of the Hofburg, including
the Hofburg chapel, is called the “Swiss wing”. The name comes from
the troops formed from Swiss mercenaries who, at the time of the
imperial couple Franz I. Stephan (von Lorraine) and Maria Theresia,
provided the gatekeeping.
monument office, which is located here, can be reached via the
column staircase in the Swiss wing. Here is the ancestral hall with
the Habsburg imperial portraits, created around 1874 for Crown
Rudolf I (1281-1291)
Maximilian I (1459-1519)
Charles V (1500–1558)
Ferdinand I (1503-1564)
Ferdinand II (1578-1637)
Leopold I (1640-1705)
Charles VI (1685-1740)
Maria Theresa (1717-1780)
Francis II (1768-1835)
Franz Joseph I (1830-1916)
The ante chamber leads to the marble hall in the
ceremonial hall wing, which dates from the 19th century. The
particularly thick walls still come from one of the defensive towers
of the old castle fortifications. The term ante chamber refers to
the former use as an anteroom.
In March 2013, remnants of the
6 by 20 meter foundation of the Kunstkammer of Emperor Ferdinand I,
built between 1558 and 1563, were discovered near the Swiss gate
towards Michaelerplatz, the first museum building north of the Alps.
The discovery by art historian Renate Holzschuh-Hofer was made by
evaluating sources that had been known for some time and had only
The Hofburg Chapel is
the oldest and main chapel of the Hofburg and was the house chapel
of the Habsburgs. Probably around 1287/88 Albrecht I had a late
Romanesque chapel built, which was first mentioned in 1296. From
1423 to 1426 there was an expansion under Albrecht V.; the wood of
the current roof structure dates from 1421. Albrecht, who
commissioned large-scale persecution of Jews in Vienna this year,
probably also caused Jewish tombstones to be embedded in the
chapel's foundation (they were later removed and in a Jewish
From 1447 to 1449 Emperor Friedrich III.
rebuild and expand the chapel in the Gothic style. Maria Theresa
arranged for the chapel to be rebuilt in late Baroque style. In the
course of classicism, it was regotiated again in 1802. In it the
Hofmusikkapelle, founded by Emperor Maximilian I, performed, the
tradition of which is continued by the Vienna Philharmonic and the
Vienna Boys' Choir. Until the end of the monarchy in 1918, the
Hofburg chapel served as the parish church of the
ex-Austro-Hungarian Empire. Court and castle parish.
Although a separate building, the stable castle is
connected with a transition to the rest of the Hofburg complex. It
was originally built as a residence for Maximilian II as heir to the
throne. According to tradition, Emperor Ferdinand I did not want to
live under one roof with his son, who tended to be Protestant.
In the 17th century, the Stallburg housed the extensive art
collection of Archduke Leopold Wilhelm, the art-loving brother of
Emperor Ferdinand III, which forms an essential part of the
collections of the Art History Museum.
During the 18th
century the building was converted into one of the stables for the
imperial horses, from which the name "Stallburg" is derived. A large
part of the Spanish Riding School is still housed there today.
Opposite the Swiss gate is the Amalienburg, also
known as the Amalia wing, named after Amalie Wilhelmine, the widow
of Emperor Joseph I, who was built more than a hundred years earlier
as the Viennese residence of Emperor Rudolf II in the late
Renaissance style. In the courtyard of the wing, the Amalienhof,
there is a Renaissance fountain, the basin of which is made of
imperial stone. Worthy of note are the turret with a French hood and
the astronomical clock on the facade. In the center of the courtyard
of the Vienna Hofburg, between the Amalienburg and the Swiss Gate,
there is a monument to Emperor Franz I of Austria by Pompeo Marchesi
from 1842 to 1846, which can be seen in the left part of the photo.
In the course of time, in addition to Amalie Wilhelmine, various
archduchesses resided in Amalienburg, from 1790 to 1792 Leopold II,
1814/15 during the Vienna Congress of Tsar Alexander I, 1831–35, the
later Emperor Ferdinand I with his wife Maria Anna of Savoy, 1854–98
Empress Elisabeth and 1916–18 Emperor Charles I
Amalienburg was built on the square of the Cillierhof (originally
owned by the Counts of Cilli) and a group of medieval houses. After
the demolition, the new building for the later Emperor Rudolf II
began in 1575. The construction was completed in stages until 1611.
In the course of a renovation around 1683/84, the building was
extended by a half-story and the facade was designed to the
Ballhausplatz. In 1711, Franz Jänggl created the connecting wing to
the Leopoldine wing and probably also the new clock tower. The
preserved furnishings of the floor (apartments for the later Emperor
Joseph II.) And the mezzanine in Rococo style come from Nikolaus
Today the Chancellery Ministers and State
Secretaries (as an annex to the Federal Chancellery), the Schönbrunn
Palace Cultural and Operating Society and the Austrian Conference on
Spatial Planning (ÖROK) reside in the Amalia wing.
The connecting building between the Amalienburg
and the Swiss wing is the "Leopoldine wing", which was built under
Emperor Leopold I in the 1660s. The architect was Filiberto
Lucchese, the execution was the responsibility of the Italian master
builders Carl Martin Carlone and Dominico Carlone. The major order
for stone deliveries and stonework came after the Kaisersteinbruch,
to the masters Ambrosius Ferrethi and Camillo Rezi. Settlements are
listed in the Camerale number office books of the court chamber
archive: hard imperial stone for the facade, "the large cornice
panels on the outer side", staircase scale, most recently the
portal. The Viennese stone mason master Urban Illmayr was
responsible for working on the “soft” stone. At the west end of the
Leopoldine tract is the chamber chapel, which Maria Theresa
completely renovated in 1772.
After the Second Siege of
Vienna in 1683 by Giovanni Pietro Tencalla, the wing was rebuilt and
increased by one floor. In 1752, a balcony was added by the
Hofsteinmetzmeister Elias Hügel and Johann Baptist Regondi. The huge
wine cellar of the Hofburg was located below this Leopoldine wing
and the Amalienburg. Furthermore, the "Secret Council Chamber" was
located in the area of the Leopoldine Wing. Emperor Franz Joseph I
gave his opening speeches at the Austro-Hungarian delegation
meetings here. On June 28, 1900, the then heir to the throne and
nephew of Franz Joseph, Franz Ferdinand, took the "renown oath" and
renounced the succession to the throne in the name of his future
(not equal) wife and his descendants.
Republic of Austria
From 1923 until its dissolution in 1939, the influential German
club, which was geared from the German national to the National
Socialist era, was headquartered in eight representative rooms in
the Leopoldin wing with the Federal President Michael Hainisch (1920
to 1928) and at least fifteen intergovernmental government members
and several Juliputschists.
Since the end of 1946, the
Leopoldine Wing has housed the official offices of the Austrian
Federal President and the presidential office authority assigned to
them, which were previously housed in a wing of the Federal
Chancellery. The Hofburg Police Inspection is also housed in the
Co-productions between Johann Bernhard Fischer von
Erlach and his son Joseph Emanuel Fischer von Erlach are the winter
riding school opposite the Stallburg - where the first Austrian
Parliament met in 1848 - and the Imperial Chancellery wing opposite
the Leopoldin wing. This was built in 1723–1730 by Johann Lucas von
Hildebrandt (like the Secret Court Chancellery in 1717–1719, today
the Federal Chancellery, under Reich Vice-Chancellor Friedrich Karl
von Schönborn-Buchheim). It housed the offices of the Imperial
Chancellor, the actual "Prime Minister" of the Holy Roman Empire
(the position of the Imperial Chancellor, whose representative the
Imperial Vice Chancellor was considered to have been since the
Middle Ages, the Archbishop of Mainz), as well as the Imperial Court
Council. After the end of the empire, the apartments of the Duke of
Reichstadt and finally of Emperor Franz Joseph I and his wife
Elisabeth of Austria-Hungary were housed in this wing.
Swiss wing, the Amalienburg, the Leopoldine wing and the Imperial
Chancellery form a courtyard that was called Franzensplatz from
1846–1919 and has been called In der Burg since 1919.
middle of the square there is a bronze statue of Emperor Franz II /
I, erected on the initiative of Emperor Ferdinand I and unveiled on
June 16, 1846. by the hand of the Italian sculptor Pompeo Marchesi,
who depicts the emperor on an octagonal pillar like a Roman Caesar.
There are bronze reliefs on the side fronts of the pillar, which
represent the activities of the people. The pillar is flanked by
four colossal statues that symbolize faith, strength, peace and
Initially free-standing on the
other side of the castle (at today's Josefsplatz) was the court
library, which was designed by Emperor Charles VI. was founded and
which today contains the baroque state hall of the Austrian National
Library. Its construction was started by Johann Bernhard Fischer von
Erlach; His son Joseph Emanuel completed the construction in 1735.
In the sumptuous hall there is Prince Eugene's book collection, a
ceiling fresco by Daniel Gran and imperial statues by Paul Strudel.
The central statue represents Charles VI. as Roman-German Emperor
and is attributed to Antonio Corradini. This part is probably the
most artistically significant of the Hofburg.
Erlach had only planned access from the Swiss wing, i.e. no public
access for a library that was actually designed as a public
institution from the start. The ceremonial files dated April 23,
1731 tell of a "... visit of the new library by imperial majesty and
the archduchess ...". It was not until 1733 that a neighboring small
building of the Augustinian convent was bought in order to build a
generally accessible staircase, the so-called large official
Subsidence, which occurred in the years after
1760, forced some renovations that Nicholas of Pacassi carried out.
Subsequently, today's staircase to the State Hall was built until
about 1767, here too with a smoothly polished imperial stone for
steps and pedestals. In 1769 the building threatened to collapse due
to the enormous weight of the books. Empress Maria Theresa and her
son Joseph II had it strengthened under the supervision of Count
Losy von Losymthall, court building director, and court architect
Nicolaus Pacassi. On this occasion, a new open square, Josefsplatz,
was created, in the center of which is a equestrian statue of
Emperor Joseph II by Franz Anton von Zauner.
In 1904 the
Hofbaucomité commissioned the design of an access to the court
library from Josefsplatz. The stone work was done partly from old
Almaser, Wöllersdorfer, Kaiser, Marzano and Kelheimer stone, partly
from new Kaiser stone for steps and floor slabs, Cava Romana and
Adjacent to the Hofbibliothek is
the Augustinertrakt on the southeastern side of Josefsplatz, named
after the adjacent Augustinerkirche and the Augustinerkloster, which
were built in front of the Hofbibliothek, but became part of it when
the Hofburg was expanded. As the Archduke Albrecht Palace (formerly
the Palais Tarouca-de Sylva), which houses the Albertina graphic
collection, is structurally connected to the Augustinian monastery
and was inhabited by members of the imperial family, it is also
included in the Hofburg complex.
Adjacent to the north of the court library is the Redoutensaal wing,
named after the Redoutensaal located in it. They include the large
and small redoutensaal as well as the roof foyer opened in 1997.
Maria Theresa had a 17th century opera house rebuilt, creating
the Redoutensäle, as it were the dance and concert halls par
excellence. The first structural concept came from Jean Nicolas
Jadot de Ville-Issey, the outer facade bears the signature of
Nikolaus Pacassi and Franz Anton Hillebrandt.
halls were redesigned again and again, for example by mirroring the
windows, stucco and gold strips on the ceiling or by introducing
electricity. In 1973 the halls were converted into a congress
center. On June 18, 1979, Jimmy Carter and Leonid Brezhnev signed
the arms limitation agreement SALT-II here.
On the night of
November 26-27, 1992, a major fire broke out in the Hofburg area in
the area of the Redoutensäle on Josefsplatz. Part of the roof and
the upper floor burned down completely. The fire was hard to put out
and the Lipizzaner horses in the adjacent riding school had to be
brought to safety. After the fire, the somewhat less damaged little
Redoutensaal was restored to the original. An artist competition was
announced for the equipment of the Great Redoutesaal. The Austrian
painter Josef Mikl emerged as the winner. He made oil paintings to
quote the literary figures Ferdinand Raimund, Johann Nepomuk
Nestroy, Elias Canetti and Karl Kraus. In the course of the
renovation of the burned-out redouta halls, Manfred Wehdorn's former
attic was converted into a roof foyer.
The restoration of the
Redoutensäle took five years and was carried out under the aegis of
the castle main body Austria. The wing has been in the
administration of the Vienna Congress Center Hofburg
Betriebsgesellschaft since 1997. In 1998 the Redoutensaal was put
into operation again on the occasion of the first Austrian EU
Presidency. In 2006 Wehdorn created the "Hofburg Gallery" and the
"Hofburg Forum" underneath in the former courtyard of the Hofburg.
The Redoutensaaltrakt, the Hofbibliothek and the Augustinertrakt
form an architectural, harmonious ensemble in the structure of a
horseshoe that forms the Josefsplatz.
In December 2014, the
six Austrian parliamentary parties agreed to use the Redoutensaal
wing of the Hofburg during the renovation work on the parliament
building from 2017 to 2021 as alternative accommodation for the
plenary sessions. The meetings of the National Council and the
Federal Council have been taking place in the adapted Redoutensaal
since September 2017. Access to public meetings and guided tours on
non-meeting days is possible via the main entrance at Josefsplatz.
In 2019, the Court of Auditors criticized that the recommended
fire protection devices, especially in the residential area, are
still not up to date.
In 1726, Joseph Emanuel
Fischer von Erlach also planned the Michaelertrakt, the connection
between the Winter Riding School and the Imperial Chancellery. But
since the old Burgtheater was in the way, this plan remained
unfinished for a long time and was only actually built in a slightly
modified form by Ferdinand Kirschner between 1889 and 1893.
As a result, conversions and adaptations occurred again and again,
especially from 1763 to 1769 under Nikolaus von Pacassi, who
connected the court library with the rest of the castle and on the
other side with the Augustinian Church, thus creating Josefsplatz,
which was one of the most beautiful squares in Vienna applies. After
the renovation of the Albertina in the 1820s by Joseph Kornhäusel
according to the plans of Fischer von Erlach, it too connected to
the Hofburg from the other side.
The Michaelertrakt is
crowned by a large, bronze dome. After Michaelerplatz was completed,
two fountains with sculptures were installed on the front: Rudolf
Weyr's Power on the Sea on the left and Edmund Hellmer's Power on
the Land on the right.
Ceremonial hall wing
extension from this period (as early as 1804) is the ceremonial hall
wing or Montoyer wing with the Louis Montoyer ceremony hall. Since
it was built at right angles to the Leopoldine wing, it protruded
from the castle and was called "The Nose of the Hofburg" for a long
time. Today it is integrated into the Neue Burg.
The ceremonial hall is the most magnificent hall
in the Hofburg. The Belgian architect Louis Montoyer designed the
wing on behalf of Emperor Franz II / I. as a throne room. An
artistic coffered ceiling and 26 crystal chandeliers, formerly
fitted with 1,300 candles, give the hall an imperial shine. The 24
Corinthian columns are made of synthetic marble. It was here that
Napoleon's bridal solicitation for the daughter of Emperor Franz II
/ I, Marie Louise, and the exclusive "Ball bei Hof" took place. On
Maundy Thursday, Emperor Franz Joseph I and Empress Elisabeth each
invited twelve poor old men to traditional foot washing.
satellite room served as the common room of the satellite bodyguard,
who was responsible for the personal protection of the monarch. The
guardsmen were stationed at key access points throughout the castle.
On May 15, 1717, Maria Theresa was baptized in the knight's hall
by the papal nuncio Spinola, the representative of Pope Clement XI.
The structure of the marble hall next to the ceremony hall dates
from the 16th century, its interior with artificial marble was
adapted to the ceremony hall around 1840. During the imperial period
it served as a dining room and for court children's balls.
a thank you for his commitment in the Italian campaign during the
revolutionary year 1848, Franz Joseph I allowed the deserved Field
Marshal Radetzky to live in his own rooms in the castle, although he
was not a member of the court. In the so-called Radetzky apartments,
historical tile stoves are still preserved in the corners, which
were heated from the outside by a separate passage.
In 1809, part of the old bastions near the castle were
blown up as a result of the coalition wars and then ground. At that
time, new frontworks (the so-called Hornwerk curtain and the
Escarpen) were built into today's Ringstrasse, into which the
classicistic castle gate was integrated. Three gardens were created
within these new walls, built in 1817: the private imperial castle
garden, Heldenplatz as a lawn with alleys and the Volksgarten with
the Theseus temple, which, like the castle gate, was designed by
Peter von Nobile.
New castle and Corps de Logis
As part of
the expansion of the city after the city walls were ground in the
1860s, the last major expansion of the castle took place. An
imperial forum was planned, a two-wing complex over the Ringstrasse,
with the twin museums (Kunsthistorisches and Naturhistorisches
Museum) as flanks and the old court stables Fischer von Erlachs as a
conclusion. The construction management of this project was held by
Gottfried Semper and later Karl Freiherr von Hasenauer. The plan was
only partially implemented. The museums were completed in 1891, the
rest of the forum was delayed. In 1913 the south-east wing, the Neue
Burg, was largely completed, but the Kaiserforum was finally
shelved. After all, this is how Heldenplatz and
Maria-Theresien-Platz came into being.
The final part of the
building to the Ringstrasse and the outer castle gate is the Corps
de Logis. The plans for the Kaiserforum were reduced, an identical
counterpart to the Corps de Logis was to be built in order to make
the surroundings of the castle gate symmetrical. In the planned
other Corps de Logis, heir to the throne Franz Ferdinand wanted to
set up a museum.
The interior was completed after the end of
the monarchy in the 1920s. Therefore, neither of the two wings was
ever occupied. Today they serve as exhibition rooms for numerous
museums and as a reading room for the Austrian National Library.
As part of the construction of the New Castle, the monumental
equestrian statues of the two most important Austrian generals,
Prince Eugene of Savoy and Archduke Karl, were erected on
Heldenplatz. On March 15, 1938, the dictator Adolf Hitler announced
the "connection" of his homeland to the German Reich from the
balcony of the Neue Burg to Heldenplatz.
Anton Biró's large
cast-iron, ornate gates and grilles on the New Castle and on the
Corp de Logis were originally painted green and gilded. Over time,
they were painted black and the original color scheme was forgotten.
In the course of renovation work at the beginning of the 21st
century, the original colors came to light again during
investigations. In agreement with the Federal Monuments Office, the
castle main body installed the gates at the Corps de Logis again in
green and gold.
The ballroom wing was built by Ludwig Baumann in
the years 1910–1923. It connects the New Castle with the ceremonial
hall wing and has the main page for Heroes' Square. It was
originally planned as part of the "Kaiserforum" planned by Carl
Hasenauer in 1866 and generously redesigned by Gottfried Semper in
With around 1,000 m², the Grand Ballroom is the largest
hall in the entire Hofburg. Although it was conceived as a throne
room, it was never used as such: the interior fittings ended in
1923, the artistic design remained incomplete. Three ceiling
paintings by Alois Hans Schramm glorify the rule of the Habsburgs.
The motto of Emperor Franz Joseph I, Viribus Unitis, served as a
motto. Eduard Veith and Viktor Stauffer immortalized personalities
from Austrian history in the lunettes and octagon fields below.
Maximilian I, Charles V, Ferdinand I, Rudolf II and Ferdinand II of
Tyrol can be seen in the ceiling paintings, in the side panels
Leopold I, Charles VI, Prince Eugene and the Polish King Jan III.
The ballroom wing has been used as a congress
center by the Hofburg Kongresszentrum & Redoutensäle Wien GmbH since
1958. The 1967 Eurovision Song Contest was held here. The OSCE has
had an event organization office here since 1992. In 2005 the
so-called "Kesselhaushof" was roofed and converted into a conference
hall. In addition to numerous other balls, the Vienna Corporate
Ball, which is controversial because of the repeated participation
of right-wing extremists, has been taking place here every year
The castle garden connects to the
southeastern front of the New Castle. In contrast to the
Volksgarten, it was only reserved for members of the imperial
family. A spacious terrace leads from the new castle into the castle
garden. The local palm house, also known as the butterfly house, was
built by Friedrich Ohmann as the last building of the Hofburg in Art
Nouveau style and replaced a greenhouse that had been built a
hundred years earlier by Ludwig Gabriel von Remy.
Palm House and the New Castle there was once a connecting building
that closed the back of the courtyard library into a new courtyard.
This part was removed by order of the heir to the throne, Archduke
Franz Ferdinand, who wanted a clear view of the castle garden from
the court library. The castle garden was only opened to the general
public in the 1920s. After the Second World War, the Mozart monument
was moved here from the badly damaged Albertinaplatz. There are also
monuments to Emperors Franz I. Stefan and Franz Joseph I.
At the time of the construction of the New Castle, several
cast iron works were commissioned. This includes the long and high
fence that encloses and protects the entire area. The fence begins
at the Palmenhaus in the Burggarten and encompasses the Burggarten
towards Goethegasse, then along the Ringstrasse past the Corps de
Logis, to the Burgtor and then along the Ringstrasse around the
Volksgarten to the Burgtheater. There he pulls eastwards along
Löwelstraße where he separates and closes the Volksgarten from
Heldenplatz. The parks of Burggarten, Heldenplatz and Volksgarten
are part of the Hofburg's immediate ensemble. The decorated fence in
the style of the neo-baroque was originally painted red and partly
gilded.  The lanterns are adorned with the imperial crown. Over
time, the fence was painted completely black. The original coloring
reappeared in the course of restoration work in the 1990s. The fence
was completely dismantled except for the foundations and the
sandstone base (Mannersdorfer Stein) was repaired. Rust damage was
removed and missing parts replaced. After long investigations, the
fence was able to shine again in its original red and gold color, at
least in the area of the castle gate, but the rest of the area was
kept black again, probably for reasons of cost.
Various areas of the Hofburg are open to the public
as museums. However, they are not all under the same administration:
The Imperial Apartments, the Sisi Museum and the Silver Chamber
are among the most visited sites in Austrian history. The original
offices and living quarters of Emperor Franz Joseph and Empress
Elisabeth can still be seen from the former residence of the
Habsburgs. The Sisi Museum presents the visitor with myth and truth
about Empress Elisabeth ("Sisi") in an elaborately staged manner.
The former court silver and table chamber presents valuable
porcelain, glass and silver service owned by the Habsburgs.
areas are managed by the Schönbrunn Palace Cultural and Operating