Inside the Vienna City Hall

The Festival Hall

The Festival Hall (Photo: Media Wien) The Festival Hall (Photo: Media Wien) The Festival Hall (Photo: Media Wien)

When it was built in the late 19th century, the Festival Hall was the biggest hall in the whole country - 71 metres long, 20 metres wide and 18.5 metres high. It is mainly used for large-scale events such as balls, concerts, exhibitions, et cetera. The ceiling of the hall was designed as a barrel-type vault with web compartments and raised cross ribs as decorative elements. On the Rathauspark side, there is an open loggia with windows; the courtyard side features a projecting corridor spanned by columns. Numerous arcades and the gallery loggia enhance the impression of vast, airy space. Two flights of stairs lead up to the gallery encircling three sides of the hall.

On the front sides of the hall, there are two orchestra niches whose corners are decorated with relief portraits of four great composers: Mozart, Haydn, Gluck and Schubert. Brilliant lighting is provided by 16 magnificent chandeliers. The parquet of the Festival Hall is under monument protection. It maintains its original outlook and was made of special oak preserved for centuries in upland bogs. The wrought-iron grilles inserted into the flooring serve to heat the Festival Hall. Another artistic gem of the Festival Hall are the ten statues representing important historical figures set into the arcade columns.

The Festival hall offers a lot of space. Theoretically, 1,500 couples could waltz simultaneously across its parquet - too bad the Building Inspection Department does not permit it.

The Festival Hall (Photo: Media Wien) Window of the Festival Hall (Photo: Media Wien) Detail of the Festival Hall (Photo: Media Wien)

© Photos: Media Wien

Inside the Vienna City Hall

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