Where to stay in Vienna in 2011.

The new Sofitel hotel (www.sofitel.com), set to open on the 14th of December, is receiving a lot of hype and causing great expectation. Designed by Pritzker prize-winning architect Jean Nouvel, its avant-garde bold glass and steel tower structure is aiming for five-star status, reports the New Zealand Herald. Apart from the 182 rooms and suites, there will be lifestyle shops and a glass-fronted restaurant, Le Loft, on the 18th floor, with stunning panoramic views of Vienna. The hotel's top chef Antoine Westermann, will be serving the very best of his creations of Austrian and French dishes.

There is also a new Shangri-La hotel set to open in the city early in 2011 and the revamped grand Schwarzenberg Hotel will re-open after being closed this year for renovation. Set in a 1716 summer palace next to the Belvedere, the hotel has many original baroque features, authentic paintings, antique furniture and a spectacular private park with five tennis courts and three kilometers of jogging paths.

So be ahead of the rest in 2011 and choose between state-of-the-art, cool and contemporary luxury, or historic grandeur redolent of the powerful Austrian empire. Either way you'll enjoy a stylish stay in one of Europe’s main cultural hubs.

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