Tom Middler continues his coverage of the battle for Best Public Viewing in Vienna.
In these last few rounds of the EURO 2016, it’s all or nothing, and only the best will do. And in these battles, there’s no reruns in the case of any irregularity.
To add to the heat of the competition, two British sporting shocks occurred in a matter of days, and the team that has remained is probably not the one anyone expected. For viewing these pressure-cooker games, you’ll need to go somewhere dependable (unlike the English team). Although roughly 100% of all Icelanders were in France for their team’s ultimate quarter-final loss to the host country’s, where have all the Austrians been going since they’ve been sent back home?
Cometh the hour, cometh the Altes AKH. This wonderful tree-lined campus courtyard is bathed in sunshine and generous with shade, buzzing from the energy of all manner of people wandering through, kids kicking footballs around, students meeting after lectures, and more importantly, TWO lovely fan parks!
Stiegl-Ambulanz is home to the first, with two big-screen TVs, and the chance to gather together on beer-hall style benches, or opt for something a bit more civilized in the garden of the restaurant itself. With its fine namesake beer on tap and the old Ambulanz’s simple, hearty and very reasonably priced cuisine on offer, this has to be right up there with the best spots.
A worthy teammate lies just across the park though, as there is a second, enclosed fan arena in front of the Salettl im alten AKH. This one offers VIP covered seating for those who reserve (or arrive early enough), some giant deck chairs for a more romantic experience of the EUROs, and a large number of auditorium benches set up before a mega screen. Helpful staff walk around bringing beer and occasionally even food to your seat (a welcome change from most fan parks), and smaller screens are dotted around the area so you’ll not miss a kick if you do venture to the (50-cent) loos or the bar.
Both of these places offer beer and food at lower prices than a lot of other stingier fan parks (I’m looking at you, Grelle Forelle), and both are also very well suited to these last few, tense 21:00 kick offs. With the home team out of the running, these fan parks have gone from being sardine-packed for matches, to that perfect blend of business and buzz, with lots of fans creating a great match atmosphere, but no more issues with bar queues or trying to find extra jumpers to reserve seats for your mates at kick-off time, etc.
Altes AKH then, holds a fair few advantages over its Championship rival, Rathausplatz, and fans of any team will be happily housed here for the games. Groups of supporters looking for a few pints will be right at home here of course, but such a relaxed and welcoming place can also be recommended for viewing a game with your kids or your other half . There are places for future footballers to play and run around within sight, and also many areas in which to sit down and just let the evening, and the game, go by. For the really invested fans of any of the remaining teams, this is perhaps the location’s main weakness. Instead, they will probably be at Rathausplatz with their face paint on.
Games this week:
Wales vs Portugal, Wednesday 6th July, 21:00
Germany vs France 7th July, 21:00
THE FINAL! Sunday 10th July, 21:00.
In case you missed our previous post, here are some of Vienna’s key contenders for the Best Locale for Public Viewing trophy.
(listed in district order, 1st – 23rd):
Flanagan’s Irish Pub
Irish pub popular amongst “home-nations” fans, with traditional British pub meals, a good beer selection and flat-screen TVs.
Free entry, open for all matches
1., Schwarzenbergstraße 1-3
(01) 513 73 78
A 21m2 LED screen outside on the terrace of this lovely location in the Stadtpark – or in the Leharsaal in case of rain. Waltz your way to victory!
Opening Hours: Mon–Sun, 11:00–23:00
1., Johannesgasse 33
(01) 713 13 33
A vast 100m2 LED screen, plus 5 other big screens in the beautiful surrounds of Vienna’s Rathausplatz. Film and music festival screenings and a huge selection of food stalls are also available at the city’s biggest fan arena.
Free entry, 11:00 – 24:00 daily, open for all matches
(01) 319 82 00 0
Public viewing with stadium atmosphere on 14 screens, featuring food, drink, competitions and events sponsored by “Alaba’s favorite,” Paulaner Münchner Gold.
Free entry (“Private public viewing” packages are available at Kolariks Himmelreich location)
Open for all matches
2., Prater 128, Waldsteingartenstraße
(01) 729 49 99
Pratersauna (Sauna Strand Klub)
Open air LED screen at the Sauna Strand Klub beach bar, restaurant & pool, in the famous Prater park.
Free entry, from 12:00 daily, open for all matches
2., Waldsteingartenstrasse 135
Sun-drenched outdoor screenings at the Danube Canal’s biggest sandy beach bar.
Free entry, 10:00 – 02:00 daily, open for all matches
3., Herrmannpark (on the canal near Schwedenplatz)
Live multi-screen football coverage indoors with Irish pub atmosphere, pub food and plenty of non-smoking and smoking areas.
Free entry, open for all matches
(01) 585 47 85
Altes AKH / Stiegl Ambulanz
Public viewing courtyard with LED big-screen, offering various bars and restaurants including Stiegl Ambulanz.
Free entry (additional VIP packages available)
Opening hours: 08:30 – 24:00 daily
9., Alserstraße 4
(01) 402 11 50
Irish pub/restaurant with HD screens, English commentary and a special Euro 2016 brew.
Opening hours: Weekdays from 14:00, weekends from 13:00, open for all matches
9., Währinger Straße 3
(01) 409 79 23
Grelle Forelle – “Canal de Goal EM- Lounge”
with large open air terrace next to the Danube canal and video walls for match screenings.
Free entry (Additional VIP packages available)
Opening hours: Open for all matches
9., Spittelauerlände 12
FM4’s official EURO 2016 EM-Quartier with open air courtyard screenings and indoor options. Live music events, bars and food stalls available.
Free entry, open for all matches
9., Währingerstraße 59
(01) 401 21 0
Stadion Hohe Warte (Care Energy Naturarena)
Big-screen open air stadium match viewings, with live music and open air Kino events.
Entry from €3
Opening hours: Open for all matches (Live music before KO on 14th of June)
19, Hohe Warte, Klabundgasse 11
(01) 368 61 36
Aspern Nord U2 Station
(public viewing at Urbanes Feld)
It may be practically halfway to Bratislava, but this new viewing location (presented by Strandbar Herrman) promises to be mega fan-friendly. Three Outdoor LED walls, 25 international food stalls.
Free entry, open for all matches (Achtung! Except for Fri and Sat nights, the last U-Bahn back into town leaves at 23:58)
22., Ostbahnbegleitstraße 50