Inside the Hotel Sacher Wien
Our interview with the venerable institution's General Manager,
Mr. Reiner Heilmann
General Manager of the
Hotel Sacher Wien
Salute to Vienna: Mr. Heilmann, please tell me a little about yourself and your time with the hotel.
Reiner Heilmann: Originally I am from Germany, where my parents had a hospitality business. It became clear very early that I would like to join the hotel business as well. Since I always wanted to work in Austria, I gained experience in different hotels before I started at the Hotel Sacher Wien.
What is your favourite place in the hotel?
My favorite place in the hotel is the restaurant Rote Bar, which is, compared to other hotel restaurants, very popular amongst local guests. It is lovingly called the “living room” due to its cozy interior and atmosphere. You have a wonderful view of the Viennese State Opera and can enjoy live piano performance in the evenings.
The Rote Bar
Today, the owner families Gürtler and Winkler and their team grant their guests the highest quality, passion, and international flair, as well as a level of excellence, which is inextricably linked with the name, Sacher. This unique and exclusive atmosphere is eminently appreciated by our guests. To maintain this high standards it is not only imperative to constantly adapt and invest, but a crucial point for us in particular is to sustain the hotel's private ownership. This allows faster decisions to be made and more individuality. This has been the base for the successful development of the brand Sacher and the Original Sacher-Torte.
Could you tell our readers a little of the history of the hotel?
The “Sacher” story began in 1832 when Franz Sacher created the world famous Original Sacher-Torte. His son Eduard opened the hotel with his wife Anna Sacher, who managed the hotel on her own after his death. This was very uncommon since women’s rights still were very restricted back then. Ever since then, the hotel has been family run. After the death of Anna Sacher, the hotel was bought by the Gürtler and Siller families who always ensured regular renovations and improvements to maintain the well-known “Sacher Experience”. The Hotel Sacher went over to the Gürtler family after the death of Mrs. Siller in 1962 and is now operated by the 4th generation of this family.
All images are copyright of the Hotel Sacher Wien
What's your favourite meal prepared in the hotel restaurants?
Certainly the “Tafelspitz”. This is boiled beef served with spinach and horseradish; maybe the most typical Austrian dish besides the Wiener Schnitzel.
What sets the hotel apart?
The Hotel Sacher Wien has owed its exceptional position in the international luxury hotel sector to its unique blend of charming, living tradition, excellent service and state-of-the-art furnishings for more than 140 years.
Are there any great mysteries or stories of famous guests?
The famous Picture Gallery in the hotel shows the grand collection of portraits of famous guests who stayed at the Sacher since the times of Anna Sacher. Certainly a hotel could tell endless stories and mysteries of its guests but of course we cannot tell them since the privacy of our guests is one of our highest priorities.