When we think about a gay-friendly hotel, there are a lot of things that come to mind. While you may not necessarily want a built-in dark room, you’ll want to know that you’ll be safe, comfortable and enjoy your stay. And that’s the experience I had when staying at the Ruby Hotels in Vienna.
Lean luxury – a very millennial style choice
I’m showing my age when I admit that I am on the cusp of millennial – one of the first batches ever produced – and so a lot of the newer hipster shit isn’t of interest to me. What I do love is quirky style, authentic locations, and amenities that I actually care about, and that’s what Ruby Hotels accommodate for.
Ruby Lissi, the third and newest Ruby Hotel to open in the gorgeous capital city of Vienna, is housed in an 18th-century Neoclassical stone building. With various tenants over the years, the striking facade gives way to a somewhat underwhelming entrance, in which guests walk through a long barren corriden that feels like an old, abandoned school building.
However, once into the main reception, Ruby Lissi is a total hipster dream. The spacious reception/dining room/cafe/bar/entertainment space is packed with vintage items that are chosen specifically for each property. Electric guitars, globes, gramophones, all that weird shit that I really love.
Check-in and check-out is all automated, processed through iPads dotted throughout, and the staff are on-hand to answer questions, make drinks, and generally look pretty.
The rooms vary in size, from a ‘nest’ room up to a ‘cosy’ room, then a ‘lovely’ room and a ‘wow’ room. But apart from square footage the rooms are pretty much the same, with trimmed down features with cool and cosy design elements. There’s a flat-screen TV that you can stream your own entertainment to, art deco fixtures, and a guitar amp that you can plug your phone into.
Yes it was slightly weird that the bathroom and shower exist within a glass cube right in the room (so do NOT take a new boyfriend there if you want to retain some of the mystery) but that also meant I could watch TV while I showered.
Amenities and such
The downstairs bar is open 24 hours a day, and as such is the hotel’s main source of food and drink. There are also a few vending machines dotted around along with stations to make your own cups of tea. There’s no mini-bar, no room service, and no main restaurant, the idea being that while you’re in Vienna you should go out and experience Vienna.
Location, location, location
Apart from cool design and affordable rates (below), the biggest win for the Ruby Lissi is its location. Just a few steps from the Danube Canal (yes, it is connected to the famed river), the Schwedenplatz U-Bahn station and the tram system, getting around Vienna is incredibly easy, allowing you to explore the numerous bars, cafés, saloons, and sights of the city.
From about 80 euros. For more information, visit Ruby Lissi, Vienna.
Travel is such a huge part of modern life, and having grown up overseas and lived as a digital nomad no one gets that more than me.
As the world gets smaller we’re constantly looking for new and exciting places to visit that are safe and welcoming to the LGBT+ community.