A grand 18th-century observation terrace is a breathtaking landmark as well as a viewpoint over the city. Grab a coffee at the café and look out over Vienna.
Admire the imperial architecture of Schönbrunn Palace’s Gloriette, a crowning feature of the palace gardens. Dating back to 1775, the early Classic-style Gloriette was formerly used as a festival hall and a breakfast room for Emperor Franz Joseph I. Check out the Gloriette’s ornate architectural flourishes and climb the spiral staircase to reach the magnificent observation terrace. From here, see an unparalleled view of historic Vienna and imagine how the city would have appeared to its former imperial ruler.
Spend some time appreciating the Gloriette’s gorgeous design. The central structure is a triumphal arch with an ornate balustrade. On top of this central terrace, you’ll see a sculpture of an imperial eagle perched on a globe and a series of trophies. Arcaded wings flank the central arch and are decorated with twin columns, arches and entablatures. The Salzburg sculptor Johann Baptist von Hagenauer created many of the Gloriette’s sculptures.
Spot the inscription below the roof, which is dedicated to Emperor Joseph II and Empress Maria Theresa and marks the date of the Gloriette’s construction. See if you can see the section on the east wing that was restored after a World War II bomb blast. The Gloriette underwent a faithful restoration and re-glazing in the 1990s.
Ascend the spiral staircase to the observation terrace on the upper balustrade. From this 65.6-foot (20-meter) high viewpoint, you’ll see unbeatable views of the palace grounds and the city beyond. Grab a seat at the café situated within the Gloriette’s upper level and select from a range of fresh pastries and snacks to enjoy with a cup of coffee. On Sundays, the café serves brunch with live music from a local band.
The Gloriette is located within the Schönbrunn Palace Gardens (Schönbrunner Schlosspark). The gardens are well served by Vienna’s subway, light rail and bus systems. There is a small charge for accessing the observation terrace on top of the Gloriette. The terrace is open to visitors daily.