Gay and gay-friendly Shopping in Vienna
What’s cooler than shopping. Alone or with your friends and family. Vienna’s got a lot of cool stores - for gays & lesbians in particular - and in general. In the first place, there’s Clonezone Vienna right in the gay village, opposite Mango Bar. And certainly, there’s also Löwenherz, one of the largest book- and DVD-stores with a huge selection of English books and DVDs in the german-speaking world. It’s next to Café Berg.
Emperor Franz Joseph used to travel along Mariahilfer Strasse as he shuttled between Schönbrunn Palace and the Hofburg. This street connecting the Ringstrasse boulevard and the Gürtel beltway cuts an almost two kilometer path through the 6th and 7th Districts. Today it is Vienna’s number one shopping destination and partly pedestrianized. This large thoroughfare features broad sidewalks and has attracted hundreds of shops and flagship stores carrying international brands, with a particular focus on fashion, footwear, accessories and interior design. There are also countless eateries, including cafés, ice-cream shops, fast food restaurants and pizzerias. Echoes of times gone can be heard at traditional shops like Walter Weiss which stocks virtually everything the heart desires when it comes to grooming – from combs to shaving brushes and mirrors. And of cource, you can always have a rest at X-Bar, just a hopf of Mariahilferstraße for some refreshments.
Kärntner Strasse is home to one of just a handful of department stores in the city. Split across several floors, the Steffl department store offers fashion, fragrances and accessories. The nearby Ringstrassen Galerien is a spacious, indoor shopper’s paradise containing 70 shops and restaurants. Department store Peek & Cloppenburg has moved into a new building created by British architect David Chipperfield on the famous shopping street, opposite another relative newcomer, world-famous crystal maker Swarovski, which has a three-floor boutique packed with jewelry, fashion, accessories, design objects and its highly collectable crystal figurines.
Luxury at Graben, Kohlmarkt and Golden Quarter
The range of shopping options is particularly rich and diverse in Vienna’s historic first district. Here, the main – and most exclusive – shopping streets of Kohlmarkt, Graben and Kärntner Strasse form a pedestrianized area, which is known locally as the Golden U. This luxury hotspot took on an extra dimension in 2014 when the neighboring Goldenes Quartier (taking in Tuchlauben, Bognergasse, Seitzergasse, and Am Hof) officially opened for business.