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If You Go – Graz, Austria

How2GetAround

The Graz transport system is easy to use and reaches any city destination, for a reasonable price. Weekly passes cost €10, and entitle riders to both trams and buses. www.mariecurie.org/at/welcome-pack/graz-transport.html

Where2Stay

Das Weitzer Hotel
Grieskai 12-16
Graz 8020, Austria
+43 316 703 0
Email: hotel@weitzer.com

Located just across the river from the old city center, this refurbished nineteenth century hotel is comfortable and convenient. Amenities include a small fitness center and sauna. Prices start at about €70, excluding breakfast.

Hotel Schlossberg
Kaiser-Franz Joseph Kai 30
Graz A-8010. Austria
+43 316 80 70 0
Toll Free from US 1800 525 4800

A sixteenth century mansion provides a romantic setting for this luxurious hotel situated near the historic city center. Classically decorated rooms feature satellite TV, wireless internet access and marble bathrooms. Amenities include a rooftop pool with terrace, a health club with Turkish baths and a parking garage. Room rates begin at about €195, which includes breakfast, served in the Winter Garden.

Appartements Diagonal

One option for budget-minded travelers staying longer than a night or two might be a small furnished apartment, like those at Appartements Diagonal, on the west side of the river, a ten-minute walk from the center. Linens and kitchenware are supplied, and plenty of shops nearby provide food and toiletries. The pricing scheme depends on number of residents and length of stay, but for as little as a week to up to a month, for two people, it’s about €50 per night. The advantage of preparing two or more meals at home saves money, too.
www.appartements-diagonal.at/diagonal/appartements_en.html

Where2Eat

As a city of more than a quarter million residents, Graz has a wide range of restaurants, ranging from simple take-out kebaps from tiny Balkan shops, to elegant food plated beautifully at sophisticated dining establishments. Asian, Middle Eastern, Italian, Irish and even Mexican food are available, though not always authentic! But we chose to focus on traditional Austrian/Styrian food, as it is delicious and not easy to find outside this area.

Gasthaus Stainzerbauer
On the corner of Bürgerstrasse across from the Mausoleum, this restaurant is a maze of several quaint and cozy rooms, filled with antiques and well-prepared traditional local food. Low-key but lovely, it features a complete menu and friendly professional staff. Main dishes include pork medallions and oxtail in sauce. Starting out with pumpkin cream soup sets the stage for a great dinner or lunch.

Krebsenkeller
A traditional restaurant with Styrian food, cozy rooms and homey folk décor located on Sackgasse. A delicious choice for a meal here is venison with spaetzle or knödel, both dumplings.

The longstanding habit in Austria of going out for coffee and cake in the afternoon is very much alive in Graz. Known also as Konditoreien, to distinguish those that specialize in pastry and desserts from the Parisian type of cafes, some have been delighting customers for decades or even centuries.

Hofcafe Edegger-Tax
On Hofgasse, a beautiful café with its carved wooden façade and marvelous pastries, it has been in business since the sixteenth century. A display of confections in the shop next to the café looks like paradise to sweet-toothed visitors.

Sacher
Famous as a hotel coffeeshop in Vienna the branch in Graz is located on Herrengasse, the elegant walking/shopping street. The front is a modern hangout for chic young locals, while the back room is a traditional café, and yes, you can have a slice of authentic Sachertorte, possibly the best-known chocolate cake in the world.

Palais Hotel Erzherzog Johann
Some of the best tortes and cakes are found at this coffee house on Sackstrasse. This traditional Viennese café offers international newspapers, an array of coffee drinks and beautiful pastries.

Wintergarten
Located next door to Sacher, Wintergarten serves dinner in a lovely environment, and the Ernst Fuchs bar takes its design cue from paintings of the artist Fuchs.

Opera Café
Across from the Graz Opera House, hence its name, it feels like a place to see and be seen, as much as to eat desserts. On a sunny Sunday morning, Grazers congregate here to quaff coffee or wine and catch up on the latest news. Photographs of native son Schwarzenegger are sprinkled through the cafe, and tables outside allow customers to enjoy good weather and the passing scene.

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