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Sunday Morning

Sunday Morning: Vienna

The author, left, and Lesley Strong with cake and coffee at Café Demel in Vienna.

The author, left, and Lesley Strong with cake and coffee at Café Demel in Vienna.

The Vienna Boys’ Choir started singing for the Austrian Imperial Court more than 500 years ago. On Sunday mornings September through June you can listen to their world-renowned bell-like voices resonating off the delicate stained-glass windows of the Gothic Hofburg Imperial Chapel. The fact that the boys are aloft in the back of the church like hidden angels only enhances the ethereal quality of their harmony. Listening is free if you stand in the chapel’s foyer, but make sure to get there by 8:45 a.m. Seats start from $32.50.

Leaving the chapel behind, duck under the royal arches to the Spanish Riding School, where from 10 a.m.-noon for $17.20 (a fraction of the cost of weekly shows) you can watch the Lipizzaner stallions perform their morning exercises to — what else? — classical Viennese music. The oldest classical Renaissance horse riding school in the world, the Spanish Riding School is a tribute to the precision and magnificence of the regal stallions.

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Afterward, head in one of two directions: toward nearby Café Demel for a Kaiserschmarrn, or emperor’s pancakes, topped with delicately sweet lingonberry jam, or to Café Central, where revolutionaries Lenin and Trotsky met regularly back in the day, for house-made apfelstrudel and Viennese coffee.

Tickets: Vienna Boys’ Choir,


Spanish Riding School,


Café Demel, Kohlmarkt 14, 011-43-1-535-17-17-0,; Café Central, Herrengasse 14, 011-43-1-533-37-64-24,www

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