Photos courtesy of stadtwienmarkting / Johannes Wiedl and simply raw bakery / Chiara Danek
Marie Polt is spreading Tidings of Comfort and Joy to those who love Christmas.
Polt, the Vienna Tourist Board’s market manager USA, UK and Canada, says it won’t be long before Vienna sees the return of its Christmas markets, which underscore the importance of Christmas in the Austrian capital.
“You kind of have this Christmas feeling all over the city,” she said during a recent Toronto reception.
Those exploring the Christmas markets can among other things enjoy mulled wine, prompting Polt to declare that it,” doesn’t get any better than that.”
Christmas in Vienna is followed by ball season, with Polt noting that visitors can dress up and “dance the night away” at the formal events.
Vienna is home to what she labeled “one of the most famous opera houses in the world” and added that her city is synonymous with music. “There’s no other city in the world where more composers lived.”
She jokingly labelled the famed Vienna Boys’ choir the “world’s oldest boys band.”
Vienna is also home to over 100 museums.
The city is also known for its coffee culture, and Vienna residents like to patronize the city’s many coffee houses, which Polt said serve “as our extended living room.”
Reece Vanasse, whose Ritz-Carlton Vienna was formed from palaces, said his property enthusiastically joins in in Christmas celebrations, building a chalet on its roof for Christmas, using it as a venue for a Christmas party.
Christine James, vice president Canada for the TL Network, was among those on hand for the evening and joined in praising the city’s musical options, including opera.
“It’s a magical experience for music enthusiasts,” she said. “Whether you’re an opera fan or not you can appreciate it.”
Meanwhile, Tony Celio, Air Canada’s manager, specialty sales, noted both Air Canada and Austrian AIrlines — which are part of the Atlantic Joint Venture group of airlines — are continuing to link this country with Vienna.
2019 saw Austrian Airlines switch its Toronto-Vienna flights to Montreal-Vienna service, while Air Canada began operating the Toronto-Vienna route.
“For the summer of 2022, Air Canada increased frequency from Toronto from five-times weekly to daily as of August for the remainder of the season and will continue service into the winter months with four weekly flights,” Celio said. “All flights will be operated by B787 aircraft offering customers a choice of Economy, Premium Economy or Signature Class service.
“Austrian Airlines continues to operate from Montreal with five weekly flights for the summer and three weekly flights for the 2022/2023 winter season with 767-300 aircraft.
“No matter where your customers choose to fly from, Air Canada and Austrian Airlines are your number one choice to Vienna, offering the only non-stop services from Canada with seamless connections throughout our extensive networks.”