Part III: A Winter Cottage Sanatorium
The historic “Cottage Sanatorium” was a state-of-the-art medical institution of belle-époque Vienna. It offered treatment and relaxation for the noble and high society of the capital city of the Habsburg Monarchy, including the Imperial Family, famous artists, or leading personalities from all fields of life.
Above is a view of the North-East side, and from here it is quite challenging to come up only with remotely pleasing photographic results. In blossoming spring or in summertime the building becomes invisible, remaining hidden behind a thick alleyway of trees. When finally the leaves have fallen and the Sanatorium will become visible once more, the general outlook however, will tend to be bleak, with the whole area turning into a land of pure barrenness.
There is this one chance however, in wintertime, when a soft blanket of snow happens to turn the small park in front of the former Sanatorium into a winter- wonderland, and when on dry and cold winter mornings, every twig and branch receives a frosty veil of shiny white diamonds. Such was this second day of the New Year 2017, and I would like to share this amazing experience with you.
In 1931 the small park to the East of the Sanatorium was renamed after the world-famous Hamlet actor, Josef Gottfried Ignaz Kainz, who also used to live in a gorgeous Villa nearby (photos of Ignaz Kainz Villa are on the page: http://aurea.link/2016/07/19/a-famous-hamlet-invitation/)
This is what the top corner room in the above photo originally looked like in 1910. Through the open balcony door you can see the observation tower in Türkenschanzpark.
During those times, when patients filled the rooms and corridors of the Sanatorium, the park to the East was still called “Meridian-Park”. Turn southwards and the reason becomes obvious: the silhouette of the white cupola of the “Vienna Observatory” is shining through the dense forest of the “Sternwartepark”. (I have dedicated a whole ‘blog category’ to the Observatory, and here is the Link: The Vienna Observatory)
This is the Observatory shortly after its official opening in 1883, in the presence of Habsburg’s Monarch, Emperor Franz Joseph I.
Right behind it you will find the former Cottage Sanatorium, which was opened in 1908, about 25 years after the Observatory.
I am including this backside view of the Sanatorium, because this too is only visible at this time of the year. Nowadays the building is strictly off-limits, as it belongs to the Russian Diplomatic circle in Vienna.
The road flanking the Sanatorium on the West side is “Littrowgasse”, and once again this is in close connection to the Observatory. Two generations of Littrows have guided the Observatory from its initial construction, here in the Cottage district of Vienna, to its great successes in observation of the celestial objects. In the Observatory’s library you will find two kinds of “Littrow’s History of Astronomy”, one of Littrow’s times and the other one published very recently, after an old manuscript had been found in the basement of the Observatory. (Littrow: Die Wunder des-Himmels; Wonders of The Sky) (Littrow’s Legacy – A Rare Discovery)
In a corner of the Kainz Park you will also find a statue of Josef Kainz in his famous Hamlet role.
I hope you have enjoyed this frosty winter walk around the Cottage of Vienna. If you happen to have any details of history linked to this area, and you would like to share it with us, kindly contact me or leave a message. See you again soon in the Cottage of Vienna.
AUREA.link 2017 All rights reserved.
Part I: The Cottage Sanatorium