Sommerfrische architecture

The Lower Austrian Alps and their architecture – grand hotels, villas, art and the Semmering Railway: from the Looshaus to the Gut Gasteil gallery and the Vinodukt

Magnificent or picturesque villas and grand hotels in the World Heritage region of Semmering bear witness to the tourism boom in the mid-19th century, when summer visitors flocked to the Vienna Alps. Even today, people come here to admire art, stay overnight, and celebrate.

Live the high life and celebrate with flair: The history-laden ambience in the Hotel-Restaurant Looshaus am Kreuzberg is incomparable. It has been run as a family business for five decades. The “Landhaus der Moderne” (“Modern Country House”) was built in 1930 by the now world-famous architect Adolf Loos for the industrialist Paul Khuner. The house has been a listed building since 1963, and is one of the most important country villas in Europe.

Gut Gasteil – built between 1920 and1924 – was acquired in 1988 by married sculptors Charlotte and Johannes Seidl. It is now home to a gallery and an organic farm. Other eye-catchers: A range of sculptures and objects are showcased amongst the greenery in the surrounding woods and meadows. Artists from all over the world are able to have a presence in Prigglitz, as part of the “Art in the Landscape” project.

Another amazing piece of architecture is the Payerbach Vinodukt – the name being a portmanteau of “Vinothek” (winery) and “Viaduct”. A multi-visual show documents the construction of the Semmering Railway. And speaking of the Semmering Railway: Its impressive tunnels and bridges can be discovered on the Railway hiking route.