HOFBURG Vienna - Event Business 2020

Short notice enquiries and a great balance of local and international gatherings means that 2020 is already shaping up to be another busy year with events covering a broad range of topics at the HOFBURG Vienna. The state rooms will see the world of science step into the limelight when a number of big-name congresses move into the venue.

Hofburg ball season
This year’s ball season is a little shorter than last year’s but still promises to be every bit as enjoyable for ballgoers. With coming up for twenty traditional balls already scheduled to take place in the imperial state rooms of the Hofburg, visitor numbers are expected to increase this year.

During the carnival season (known locally as Fasching), more than 60,000 ball guests from Austria and elsewhere will take to the dancefloor, working wonders for the city’s tourism industry. The ball season is not just a highlight of the Viennese cultural calendar, but also a major driver for the economy of the city and Austria as a whole. Life is not just good for visitors – countless companies in Vienna also profit from the ball season. On average, guests spend EUR 290 on a night at the ball.

The HOFBURG Silvesterball got the Hofburg ball season officially underway on 31 December 2019 with 2,500 visitors from 50 countries. This imperial venue is famous the world over for the diverse range of events it hosts. Highlights include the sweet Confectioners’ Ball, the rocking WU, TU and BOKU student balls, and events with a distinctly Austrian flavour like the Hunters’ Ball and the Steirerball where guests dress in traditional Alpine fashion. And then come the classics like the Physicians’ Ball, the Lawyers’ Ball and the Pharmacists’ Ball. Each and every one has a charm all of its own that guarantees a captivating and memorable night’s entertainment. The former imperial residence is the most popular ball venue in the nation’s capital. In line with the latest trends, organisers are making increasing use of light projection and video walls to put their own individual stamp on the state rooms.

MOTTO Catering treats serves up a treat for its guests, with delectable food and drinks available deep into the early hours. Over the course of the season, the company supplies 20,000 bottles (wine, Sekt, champagne), up to five tonnes of crushed ice and more than 3,000 portions of its ice cream specialities. And then there are the ever-popular Sacher-Würstel sausages, sandwiches ¬and not to forget the Faschingskrapfen doughnuts, which are another firm favourite.

Strong demand in 2020
Numerous big-name events in 2020 will provide best practice examples of how a unique setting and state-of-the-art congress technology can play off each other. The Hofburg Vienna successfully landed the 2020 spring meeting of the Austrian Society for Hematology and Medical Oncology and Working Group on Haematological and Oncological Caregivers (19 - 21 March) and two other respected congresses in the first half of the year: the 2020 International Symposium on Power Semiconductor Devices and ICs (17 - 21 May) and the 2020 European Association of Psychosomatic Medicine conference (24  - 27 June).

“We are particularly pleased that the Condé Nast - International Luxury Conference chose the Hofburg Vienna as the location for its prestigious global luxury and fashion industry gathering” confirmed Managing Director Alexandra Kaszay. Curated by fashion icon and Vogue online editor Suzy Menkes, this conference will take place from 29 - 30 April in the state rooms and provide a truly exciting challenge for our dedicated project management team.

The succession of medical congresses continues from 11 - 13 June with the European Society for Pediatric Dermatology’s Annual Congress, the Vienna Cardiology Congress from 22-24 October and the annual meeting of the Austrian Society of Anaesthesiology, Reanimation and Intensive Medicine from 26 - 28 November. The 2020 ÖGDV Dermatology Meeting from 3 - 5 December completes a strong and varied line up of scientific congresses for the year.

The Hofburg Vienna event portfolio also includes a number of fairs and exhibitions. In spring, ART Vienna 2020 will provide a platform for the modern art scene (27 -  29 March), while the 2020 marke[ding] fair for promotional advertising and visual communications follows hot on its heels on 2 April.

A magnet for wine connoisseurs, the international Vievinum 2020 fair will take place at the Hofburg from 6 - 9 June. In autumn the state rooms are given over to a series of outstanding fairs such as Art & Antique Hofburg Vienna (9 - 17 November) with its unique combination of artworks, period pieces and design objects. Design District 1010 (2 - 4 October) is back once again in 2020 with a highly promising exhibition concept.

Additional highlights include the HR Inside Summit from 14 - 15 October, which will attract almost 2,000 participants. The combined congress and fair allows attendees to learn from top international experts while also giving members of the industry in Austria a great opportunity to compare notes on the latest challenges. The event closes with the HR Award ceremony at an evening gala, with prizes given in recognition of the most innovative HR projects and ideas.

On 18 April the ROMY Gala will give the Festsaal yet another chance to bask in the limelight, and on 28 - 29 May fans of fine food will get together for Trophée Gourmet A la Carte 2020.

History designs future - Digitalisation
The new interactive video presentation of the event facilities and a virtual reality experience for customers on our website www.hofburg.com are proving popular, as confirmed by the number of hits and the amount of positive user feedback we have received.

The tool features shorter loading times, a clearer design and intuitive navigation via action buttons that take prospective organisers on a 360° tour of the venue to help them plan their events. An extensive new gallery opens up new dimensions through its depictions of a range of set ups in the state rooms. The interactive Hofburg Vienna site’s visual language and content-oriented design takes the user experience to a new level. Immerse yourself in a world of images inspired by the venue’s opulent atmosphere.  

We are constantly investing in technical infrastructure and the latest upgrades to our core network have extended the scope of our 10G internet connection. As a result, virtually all uptake points offer 1G connections, with bandwidth of 10G available for customers in some areas. Backbone upgrades have also delivered innovative improvements to key nodes on the network. The improvements include a new perimeter firewall, a new IDS/IPS system and preparation of the IDS/IPS system for use by customers. This will make it possible for us to offer state-of-the-art, proactive protection for even the most highly sensitive cyber security events in future.

Our WLAN infrastructure supports hybrid meetings featuring integrated live voting and online-apps. Live communication and discussion content as well as post editing and measurable utilisation of audio and video recordings of talks and presentations are part and parcel of modern events. Thanks to our team of in-house experts we offer all of the IT support our customers need – from basic computer and network configuration to Cisco/firewall configuration.

A year of anniversaries
Both Ludwig van Beethoven and Maria Theresa are closely entwined with the history of the Hofburg, and to this day a number of the state rooms of the former imperial palace help to keep their unique cultural legacies alive. The 250th anniversary of the birth of Ludwig van Beethoven and the 240th anniversary of the end of Maria Theresa’s rule.

Both of these famous figures are closely entwined with the history of the Hofburg, and to this day a number of the state rooms of the former imperial palace help to keep their unique cultural legacies alive.
Ludwig van Beethoven was a radical force of nature, both as an artist and a man. He was a visionary that questioned everything that had gone before him – changing the face of music and Vienna forever. His Eighth Symphony was first performed in the Hofburg Redoutensaele. Beethoven was in his creative element in Vienna, and the city’s creative spirit lives on to this day: today, like 250 years ago, Vienna still sets the tone as the capital of music. Musical ‘sparks of divinity’ continue to fly, spreading the joy of virtuoso music all around. Something that can also be experienced at the numerous concerts hosted in the Hofburg Vienna state rooms.

The fact that Vienna’s musical heritage is now a thriving cultural asset worldwide comes thanks in no small part to the influence of Maria Theresa, whose reign came to an end 240 years ago. She commissioned the construction of the Grosser Redoutensaal and the Kleiner Redoutensaal, which would soon become a focal point for high culture where a number of unique works celebrated their debut. Used to host the plenary sessions of the Austrian parliament at present, these historic spaces will reopen in 2023 as a venue for international congresses and meetings once remodelling work is completed. We have already fielded a number of enquiries from prospective organisers, as international meeting planners gear up for events years in advance.

Hofburg Vienna, Heldenplatz, 1014 Vienna
Monika Scheinost, Head of Marketing & Sales
T +43 (0)1 5873666-600, F +43 (0)1 5356426
E-mail: m.scheinost@hofburg.com, www.hofburg.com