Originally constructed in 1873 as a hotel for the World Exhibition trade fair, this grand building never actually opened its doors to guests. It was instead used as a police station and then a government building. A restoration project led by two of Vienna’s top architects has finally brought the building to life as a 152-room hotel. Elegant touches include wooden writing desks and large black-and-white photographs of dancers or pianists in the rooms. The bathrooms exude a modern Viennese aesthetic with art nouveau-style floral mosaics above the tubs and art deco light fixtures around the mirrors. Doubles from $370. 43/(0) 1-236-1000. This appeared in the October 2013 issue.