For a different sort of museum visit, check out the Hofmobiliendepot, or Hapsburg Imperial Furniture Collection. This is a former warehouse in which the Hapsburgs stored their unfashionable, out-of-season, or otherwise temporarily unused furniture. There are something like 165,000 pieces in various states of repair displayed in rows, stacks, piles, or occasionally in dioramas that look like movie sets.
Items include everything from imperial thrones to well, imperial thrones.
The majority are from the 18th and 19th centuries, but there are also Biedermayer and Wiener Werkstätte pieces from as recently as the 1950s.
The museum also caters to the Austrian obsession with Sissi, the neurotic but beautiful wife of the Austrian Emperor Franz-Josef. Many pieces from the collection were used in filming a trilogy of movies about her life, and amusingly campy (if a bit shrill) excerpts from the movies loop on video screens throughout the museum.
The Hofmobiliendepot was not at all crowded when we visited, and we enjoyed a relaxing stroll through the exhibits. While not the most spectacular of the museums in Vienna, it is a good place to visit on a rainy day. Nearly everything was labeled in both German and English, another plus.
There is an Asian café in the museum that is well-reviewed, but was closed for vacation on the day we visited. We enjoyed a delicious Lebanese lunch at Levante, just around the corner, so no harm done.
The Imperial Furniture Collection (Hofmobiliendepot)
(One block from the Zieglergasse stop on the U-3)
Reviewed by Kelly.