Vienna: Vienna Boys’ Choir, Philhamonic, State Opera, and Imperial Armoury

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Day 14 of 18… We were extremely lucky to have been able to attend the year-end Sunday mass celebration at the Hofburgkapelle, the main and oldest chapel in Hofburg, Vienna’s Imperial Palace.  It’s not easy to get seats to the mass because the chapel has a small seating capacity and many are dying to attend this particular celebration.  We booked 4 months in advance and I  recall that we were already among the last eleven people to get seats.

This celebration was extra special for us because the mass (C-Major Mass/Credo-Messe) was composed by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, whom we learned so much about while we were in Salzburg, and because the music was provided by Wiener Hofmusikkapelle (Vienna Court Music Band).  Hofmusikkapelle is an elite group of musicians which includes the Vienna Boys’ Choir, male members of the Vienna State Opera and the Vienna Philharmonic.  The mass was intimate, the homily was short and the choir’s voices were angelic.

After the mass we headed to Hofjagd-und Rüstkammer, the Imperial Armoury.  You see, this is not on the list of the top attractions in Vienna but our boys wanted this in our itinerary.  Our teen historian believes that armouries are a great way to learn about the Habsburg Dynasty’s glorious past.

Our day did not end there, in the afternoon we explored the Habsburg’s summer palace – Schönbrunn.  That’s next… Meanwhile here are some pictures at the chapel and the armoury.

Vienna Boys’ Choir practicing before their performance
We had an opportunity to chat with the boys. One them was Mark Cullao, a Filipino who lives with his family in Vienna
Walking towards the altar during the Holy Communion
The gallery has 3 levels, the top most is where the orchestra was located
Lobby of the chapel
The Imperial Armoury is at the 2nd floor of Welt Museum Wien
Grand marble pillars inside the museum
Joaquin exploring the rooms using the audio tour guide
Extensive display of parade armours
Many in the collection were diplomatic gifts
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Elegant display of power and authority
Our view during lunch at Cafe Hofburg – statue of Francis II (1768-1835) – the last Holy Roman Emperor (1782-1906), also known as Francis I, founder of the Austrian Empire (from 1804). He was the great grandson of  Empress Maria Theresa
Light ‘lunch’ at Cafe Hofburg, of course we had to taste the famous Sacher Torte and traditional Viennese coffee. 

Some tips:

  1.  The mass at Hofburgkapelle is something special, book early. Here’s the website
  2. The Imperial Armoury is a great place for kids, especially if you have boys who pretend to be knights.  Here’s the website
  3. Cafe Hofburg is right in the middle of the Imperial Palace complex.  It is part of the Landtmann group which has been serving authentic Viennese coffee since 1873.


Here are the other posts on our holiday in Bavaria and Austria:

  1. Munich: Start of our family’s tales from last winter
  2. Munich: Viktualienmarkt Biergarten
  3. Munich: BMW Museum and BMW Welt
  4. Munich: Theatine Church and Odeonplatz
  5. Munich: Christmas Markets
  6. Munich: Hofbrauhaus Beer Hall
  7. Munich: City Aparthotel München
  8. Salzburg: Birthplace of Mozart and Silent Night
  9. Salzburg: Hohensalzburg Fortress 
  10. Salzburg: Residenzplatz Christmas Market
  11. Salzburg: Salzburg Cathedral
  12. Salzburg: Silent Night 200 at Salzburg Museum
  13. Salzburg: Silent Night Tour by Bob’s Special Tour
  14. Salzburg: Silent Night at Oberndorf and Laufen
  15. Salzkammergut: Road Trip to Hallstatt
  16. Salzkammergut: Christmas Market at St Wolfgang
  17. Salzburg: Krampus Run at Hellbrunn Palace
  18. Salzburg: Imlauer Hotel Pitter Salzburg
  19. Obergurgl: A Week in the Austrian Alps
  20. Obergurgl: Chalet Obergurgl Luxury Apartments
  21. Obergurgl: Hohe Mut Alm Mountain Restaurant
  22. Obergurgl: Snowstorm on Christmas Eve
  23. Obergurgl: Day After the Storm
  24. Obergurgl: Snowshoeing
  25. Hochgurgl: Tobogganing
  26. Hochgurgl: Hochgurgl Cable Car Ride
  27. Vienna: First Impressions and Vienna Christmas Market
  28. Vienna: Hofburgkapelle and Imperial Armoury
  29. Vienna: Schönbrunn Palace
  30. Vienna: Imperial Treasury and Hofburg
  31. Vienna: Prater, Before Sunset
  32. Vienna: New Year’s Eve Fireworks and Waltz
  33. Vienna: Hilton Vienna Plaza
  34. Stuttgart: The Mercedes-Benz Museum
  35. Stuttgart: The Porsche Museum


        1. Ah unfortunately it’s still quite difficult for us to plan anything right now because of the ongoing corona virus problem. We are subject to quarantine when we go to certain countries right now, but that’s understandable of course. 🙂


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