Fri. Jun 21st, 2024

The better you get to know a city, the more exciting it becomes. Some buildings fascinate at first sight, others through their history. Together with Dr. Monika Frenzel, city guide and author of the Innsbruck City Guide, we set out to take a closer look at the most spectacular buildings of the modern age and almost lost track of time in amazement. These four buildings by international architects are probably encountered by every visitor to Innsbruck on their way through the city. They are worth pausing and taking a second, close look at:

1. Bergisel Ski Jump

Zaha Hadid (2001-2002)

One of the absolute must-sees, the ski jump is one of the first signs of the city to reveal itself to visitors approaching from the south via the Brenner Pass. Even absolute architectural philistines would probably notice it immediately. Often referred to as the “modern landmark of the Alpine metropolis Innsbruck”, the building was designed by the Iraqi-British star architect Zaha Hadid. The fact that the clever combination of sports facility and viewing platform with restaurant has won numerous international awards probably no longer surprises anyone.

Die Sprungschanze am Rande der Stadt mit Blick auf die Berge.

The ski jump on the outskirts of the city with a view of the mountains.

In 2006 Zaha Hadid was once again commissioned to design something for the city of Innsbruck – the Hungerburgbahn with its valley station in the middle of the city (Station Congress). It is also an important and imposing building, which probably every guest sees in the course of his visit.

Tip: The ski jump is also worth seeing up close (admission prices and opening hours: is also home to the Panorama Coffee House, where you can enjoy a delicious brunch!

2. The City Hall Galleries

Dominique Perrault (1996-2002)

Designed by the French architect Perrault, the Town Hall Galleries, the Hotel Penz and the 360Grad coffee house cleverly blend into Innsbruck’s old town with their many glass walls. As in other places in the city, the mountains are reflected here particularly beautifully in the glass façade.

If you don’t let yourself be distracted by the shop windows in the galleries, you can spot a few other special features, such as the colourful glass roof by French painter Daniel Buren in the courtyard or the wall design by Innsbruck multimedia artist Peter Kogler when you get out of the lift on the way to 360Grad.

Peter Kogeler, Gestaltung der Gasfassade.

Peter Kogeler, design of the gas facade. Photo: Lea Hajner

Daniel Buren, Glasdach der Rathausgalerien.

Daniel Buren, glass roof of the city hall galleries. Photo: Lea Hajner

Das 360Grad Cafe mit Blick auf die Stadt.

The 360Degree Cafe overlooking the city. Photo: Lea Hajner

Tip: A trip to the 360 degreeon the 7th floor (no entrance fee) is always worth it when the weather is nice, and the panoramic view of the city and the mountains justifies even the slightly higher prices!

3. The Tyrol Department Store

David Chipperfield (2009-2010)

Innsbruck had one before Vienna did: a real Chipperfield! In 2010, the shopping centre designed by the British master of understatement opened on Maria Theresienstrasse. If you look carefully (it’s best to stand facing Anichstrasse and then facing the Annasäule in Maria Theresienstrasse) you will notice the angles in the building, thanks to which the façade cleverly blends into the row of houses.

By the way, the first department store in Tyrol stood on exactly the same spot as early as 1908. You can learn more about the history on an information board to the right after the entrance.

David Chipperfield hat auch in Innsbruck seine Spuren hinterlassen.

David Chipperfield has also left his mark on Innsbruck. Photo: Lea Hajner

Innengestaltung des Kaufhaus Tyrol.

Interior design of Kaufhaus Tyrol. Photo: Lea Hajner

4. Landhausplatz / Eduard Wallnöfer Square

Arge Asteludin / Stiefel Kramer / Grüner (2011)

A skate park directly in front of the provincial government? That can only exist in the sports city of Innsbruck. Probably one of the most expensive skate spots in the world, has been shining since 2011 as a bright meeting point for skaters, BMXers and business people spending their lunch break in the sun. A landscape of gentle concrete hills stretches across the square, integrating both very urban elements (e.g. glass walls as fences) and landscape typologies (hills with trees and seating). The four monuments were included in the conversion and are integrated into the design in their function as contemporary witnesses.

Skaten am Landhausplatz mit Blick auf die Nordkette. Foto: Lea Hajner

Skating at Landhausplatz with a view of the Nordkette. Photo: Lea Hajner



By Lala