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30 May 2023

Spotlight On: Vienna

Spotlight On: Vienna

Sharon Dana of Vienna Convention Bureau gives the lowdown on the city and its MICE facilities as it prepares to celebrate the 150th anniversary of one of the city’s most famous events – the Vienna World Fair.

What makes Vienna such a great place for MICE business?  

Vienna impresses with its excellent event infrastructure, high service standards and outstanding array of art and culture. The city combines its rich imperial heritage with everything a modern, forward-looking city has to offer. Nearly half of Vienna is made up of green spaces, making it the greenest metropolis in the world.

What kind of events does Vienna specialise in hosting? 

From classic venues with masterpieces decorating the walls and chic boutique hotels, to historical mansions, museums, and abandoned industrial buildings: Meeting Destination Vienna can offer fantastic locations for events of every kind. As our statistics for 2022 have confirmed, the 4,339 meetings (congresses and corporate events) held in 2022 represent a 143% increase over the tally for 2021 and 79% of the pre-pandemic 2019 total.

We know it is a special year for Vienna as it is celebrating the 150th anniversary of hosting the Vienna World Fair. How is the city marking the anniversary? 

The Vienna World´s Fair in 1873 was the driving force behind Vienna’s evolution into a truly global capital. It triggered a boom in new hotel construction and always sought-after as meeting locations, the grand old buildings of yesteryear have lost none of their charm over the years. 

The Vienna World's Fair was also the first World's Fair with an extensive congress program and set the tone for many more congresses to follow. The activities to celebrate the 150th anniversary include numerous exhibitions in famous Viennese museums, spectacular new openings, and long-anticipated re-openings.

What other exciting things have recently happened, or are soon happening in Vienna?

Vienna is a city that is constantly reinventing itself and evolving – with smart city concepts, new neighbourhoods and meeting locations. Last year brought a number of exciting new locations to the capital’s portfolio including Ariana, one of the biggest urban development projects in Europe, or Weitsicht Cobenzl, situated in the biosphere park Wienerwald in the 19th district with magnificent views over Vienna.

Linking business events and world-class culture is also easy in Vienna. For instance, the Albertina, presenting a permanent Monet to Picasso exhibition, offers the ideal spaces for inspirational seminars. At Weltmuseum – one of the world’s leading museums of ethnography – the impressive settings of the colonnaded Säulenhalle and Forum provide the ideal backdrop for meetings.

What are you planning for the Meetings Show 2023?

We are excited to share all stories about the Vienna World’s Fair in 1873 and on how this event was the driving force behind Vienna’s evolution into one of the leading meeting destinations worldwide. Many new venues and hotel projects are waiting in Vienna to be explored.

Together with Viennese partners and suppliers, we are looking forward to meet industry professionals and friends to talk about all things Vienna.