First off, let’s just say that you don’t have to be a skier to love living in the Austrian Alps. Certainly, many of the properties for sale in the stunning alpine areas are near to ski slopes; some of them even have a ski slope running fairly near the front door, and this puts off people who would rather stick to skiing as a spectator sport. So, if you can leave preconceptions about Austria aside, let’s look at why it is a fantastic place to own a holiday home.
- In the famous Tyrol region, which is about 400 miles from the capital Vienna, there is a host of activities, ranging from culinary schools to creative arts classes, top class wellness spas, thermal waters and lots of luxury shopping, as well as a host of museums in Innsbruck the capital of Western Austria.
- Drink at height. In Sölden, a tiny village of 5,000 people, you can take a gondola lift to IceQ. This is a glass-enclosed, cube-shaped building cantilevered at nearly 10,000 feet above sea level. The views from the glass-walled outdoor terrace are as spectacular as you imagine and the menu includes traditional Austrian and modern international dishes, plus wine and cocktails.
- The Aqua Dome in Langenfeld is home to some famous thermal waters that are always open, no matter how cold it is outside. The spa has 12 pools and there is a restaurant plus hotel accommodation on site as well. You can have cocktails served by the thermal pools and swim under a starry sky, as it is open until midnight.
- Enjoy the bling! If you know anyone who likes Swarovski Crystal then they will definitely want to visit Swarovski Crystal Worlds at its Waters HQ. There is no mere factory tour here – the visit will take you through a series of art installations with many surprises and hidden twists and turns. The building is amazing as well, with its grass-covered roof and waterfall. Of course, there is also a shop selling everything that Swarovski has ever created.
- Austria in general is finding increasing favour with expats for its laid back lifestyle and as a place where people can find a great work-life balance. Austrians take their leisure time seriously and finishing early on Friday to enjoy an Aperol spritzer is the norm here. Food products are generally of a high quality and organic produce is easy to find. It’s also a great country for outdoor exercise: apart from the skiing, alpine hiking and getting out on a bicycle are among the activities that expats relish here.
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