Schönbrunn Palace is one of Europe's most beautiful Baroque complexes and has been in the possession of the Habsburgs since 1569. The wife of Emperor Ferdinand II, Eleonore von Gonzaga, had a pleasure palace built on the site in 1642 and called the property "Schönbrunn" for the first time. The palace and garden complex created from 1696 onwards following the siege of Vienna was complete redesigned under Maria Theresa after 1743. Today, due to its historical significance, its unique layout and magnificent furnishings, the palace is a UNESCO World Heritage site.
1,441 rooms for Emperor Franz Joseph and "Sisi"
Emperor Franz Joseph was born in Schönbrunn Palace in 1830. The monarch spent the last years of his life here in their entirety. Schönbrunn Palace has a total of 1,441 rooms, 45 of which can be visited. The interiors are in the Rococo style. Mozart made music in the mirrored hall of Schönbrunn Palace as a six year-old prodigy. In the Round Chinese Cabinet, Maria Theresa held her secret conferences with State Chancellor Prince Kaunitz. Napoleon held conferences in the Vieux Lacque Room. And in the Blue Chinese Salon, Emperor Charles I signed his renunciation of government (end of the monarchy). The Millions Room, paneled with rosewood and decorated with valuable miniatures from India and Persia, ranks amongst the most beautiful Rococo rooms in existence. The Congress of Vienna convened in the Grand Gallery in 1814/15.
Experience the imperial court virtually
In a 24-minute, technically lavishly produced virtual reality film, visitors can experience the history of the palace and the everyday life of the monarchy with digital glasses and immersive 360° content. A colorful mix of 3D animations and re-enacted scenes starts by providing visitors with information about the palace building and the history of the Habsburgs. After that, the film looks in depth at the two radiant personalities of Emperor Franz Joseph I and Empress Sisi. Special focus was placed on the historical authenticity and the detailed digital replica of the ceremonial rooms and Schönbrunn Palace theater. That makes it really easy to immerse yourself. The Crown Prince apartment and the Bergl Rooms, in which the performances are held, are worth a long look. You can find more information on the website.
From hunting grounds to Baroque garden
Schönbrunn Palace park is open to visitors free of charge all year round and is home to impressive fountains, statues, monuments, trees and flowers as well as the magnificent Gloriette. The Imperial Carriage Museum, Crown Prince Garden, Orangery Garden, Maze & Labyrinth, Zoo, Palm House and Desert Experience House are also part of the palace park and can be visited for an admission fee.
Tip: Remember that Schönbrunn Palace is the most visited tourist attraction in Austria. You should therefore buy your ticket online in advance from the comfort of your home to avoid long lines at the ticket counter: www.imperial-austria.at
Find information about the imperial family Habsburg on "The World of Habsburgs"