Ruby Marie’s ‘lean luxury’ hits the right notes

Ruby Marie Hotel & Bar
120 Mariahilfer Str., Vienna, Austria
+43 1 361 96 6066,

The Pitch Housed in a former department store, Ruby Marie is steps from the transit hub of Westbanhof train station and at the base of the 7th Neubau, or neighbourhood’s, main stopping strip on Mariahilfer. The hotel’s philosophy is “lean luxury” — there’s no reception desk per se, guests check in via tablets at a reception desk by the common area and café, and check out by simply leaving the hotel (bills are emailed after the stay is completed). And there’s no room service, but every floor has a vending machine, and the café/bar keeps long hours. But rooms are well-appointed, with modern design, impressively spacious bathrooms, fully stocked toiletries, as well as a tablet and a bedside Marshall amp ready to be plugged into your phone. Travellers aren’t meant to coccoon here. The hotel is meant to be a base from which to explore Vienna — Ruby Marie offers cultural guides to the neighbourhood and bikes for rent as well.

What We Love The vibe and the view. The hotel’s decor is all about the details, from the street entrance on up to the eighth floor there are plants filling corners, art is hung everywhere, but not in a cluttered way, and seating is comfy and plentiful. Staff are always around should you have a question or need a drink or snack, but otherwise, Ruby Marie quickly feels like home away from home in that you can come and go as you please without anyone bothering you. I checked in quickly and without any issue, plugging my name into a tablet and getting a key from the printer in seconds; entered my room (a loft) to find a glorious view of Vienna — and an outdoor patio space; then went down to the roomy café for a homemade ice tea before setting out on the city.

Don’t Miss Spending time in the hotel’s main café/bar/patio. Located on the fifth floor, where the hotel’s hands-off reception is, staff are always milling about to help with sightseeing ideas, keep you hydrated or suggest a snack. Seating is plentiful, ranging from couches in quiet corners for those who need to work, to colourful outdoor tables and chairs on the serene patio — a perfect place to enjoy a drink after a long day of touring. It’s an oasis in the busy neighbourhood.

Rooms start from €69 per night

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