To breathe or not to breathe – that is the question for Vienna’s bar hoppers. The city’s watering holes are a traditional bastion for one of Austria’s unhealthier pastimes – and will remain so for some time yet, as the government’s recent decision to ban smoking from restaurants and indoor areas only takes effect in 2018. If you can’t wait to stop smelling like an ashtray after a night out, there are a couple of pioneering places that are already smoke-free. Here are the Top seven bars for non-smokers.
1 – Comida y Luz
This nice Creole restaurant/bar at new WU (Vienna University of Economics and Business) Campus not only offers food and a novel lighting concept, but also fresh air to enjoy both. The view is another selling point, overlooking the Prater and inner city skyline.
Comida y Luz
Welthandelsplatz 1/ EA (6. OG), 1020
2 – If dogs run free
In spite of the name, I have yet to see dogs at this neighborhood dive on Gumpendorfer Straße. They would feel comfortable though, as its premises and outdoor seating are completely smoke-free, making it far easier to appreciate the flavors of their classic long drinks, cocktails and delicious Empanadas.
If dogs run free
Gumpendorfer Straße 10 – 12, 1060
3 – Manolos
Vienna’s first Tequila bar is all agave and no tobacco. With about 300 variations of the popular liquor in all price-ranges, there’s bound to be something to quench your inner Mexican.
Volksgartenstraße 1, 1010
4 – Time Out Lounge Bar Vienna
Back in the 1960s, the Time Out Lounge Bar used to be a hotel café with dark brown furniture and orange wallpaper, where patrons happily fumed away. But times inexorably change. After a complete re-launch, the old charm remains but has moved with the times: White walls, bright red upholstered furniture, large white lamps hovering like layer cakes over the tables – and no cigarettes.
Time Out Lounge Bar
Windmühlgasse 6 (in Time Out City Hotel), 1060
5 – Vis-a-vis
Clean air is still quite rare at traditional Viennese wine bars like Vis-à-vis, but this little spot is an exception. Amidst old-school wood paneling and rows of bottles, guests munch on Tapas, washed down with any of their 350 wines from all over the world.
Wollzeile 5, 1010
6 – Wein&Co Bar
With a high-tech, shiny bar and restaurant and huge terrace, this fancy establishment is the brainchild of architects Henke and Schreieck. They did not feel that ashtrays fit the design concept.
Mariahilfer Straße 36, 1070
7 – Rooftop loft at the 25hours Hotel Vienna
It’s one of the few hotel bars to draw in guests and locals alike, due to their fresh selection of long drinks, cocktails, coffee and snacks for all hours. Every Wednesday and Friday, DJs heat up the atmosphere. If it gets too hot, just step outside and gaze down from the 8th floor towards the parliament, museums and the Vienna Rathaus. Despite the breathtaking view, you can breathe freely.
25-Hours Hotel Vienna, Lerchenfelder Straße 1 – 3, 1070 Vienna