Upscale Vienna has gone über upscale as it debuts its brand new haut monde shopper’s delight, Goldenes Quartier, or Golden Quarter, in the heart of the heart of the Innere Stadt. The exclusive shopping area is on the extension of the Kohlmarkt, between Tuchlauben, Bognergasse, and Am Hof, where the five-star Park Hyatt hotel opened in 2014. Flagship stores such as Prada, Saint Laurent, Bottega Venetta, and Louis Vuitton are just a few among the many that will entice all manner of serious shoppers. Visitors can stroll easily along, as the area has been turned into a pedestrian zone.
In the pedestrian-only streets of Kärntnerstrasse, Graben, and Kohlmarkt, shopaholics can readily give into their passion. Sleekly cut dresses and intricately crafted jewelry beckon from the windows of shops formerly occupied by purveyors to His Imperial Majesty. Even the Swedish clothing store H&M presents itself in exclusive garb. On Graben near St. Stephen’s Cathedral, it has found a home in the mahogany-clad building that was once home of the department store of Braun & Co. Where baronesses once bought fur muffs, tattooed teens now rummage for cheap T-shirts. Luxury brands such as Hermès, Burberry, and Cartier have set up shop on or around Kohlmarkt, the street leading up to the Hofburg.
As you walk along Michaelerplatz, in front of the imperial palace, be sure to explore the little passageway next to the Michaeler Church. You'll find a few wonderful shops selling precious stones and silverware. If you want to venture farther afield, explore Mariahilferstrasse, Vienna’s best-known shopping mile outside of the city center. Much of this shop-heavy area has been turned into a "shared space zone"—part of it now pedestrian-only—making it very friendly to shoppers. Running from MuseumsQuartier to the new BahnhofCity Wien shopping mall (the refurbished Westbahnhof train station), it's peppered with such department stores as Peek & Cloppenburg, Gerngross, and La Stafa. Lindengasse, which runs parallel to Mariahilferstrasse, is bustling with young designers who sell their wares in little boutiques. The creativity continues on nearby Kirchengasse and Burggasse.