6 cosy Vienna cafes where to snuggle by a fireplace and lose yourself in a good book

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6 cosy Vienna cafes where to snuggle by a fireplace and lose yourself in a good book

These cold weather conditions make it pretty hard to motivate oneself to leave the warmth of the pillow fort you’ve built at home. But we’ve rounded up for you some of our favourite Vienna cafes with fireplaces, all of which are perfect to snuggle down at, and lose yourself in a good book.

Burggasse24 Café – Vienna’s fireplace cafes

Torn, broken and mismatched furniture paired with a shabby chic charm and the crackling flames of a fire place – this is the lulling bubble of calm at the café attached to the vintage clothes boutique, Burggasse 24.

The high, white wooden ceiling frames the café nicely and separates it from the neighbouring vintage clothes boutique attached, where you can purchase an outfit that will help you blend in to the effortlessly chic setting. The rustic, sweeping space of Burggasse24 is airy and bright, but is somehow intimate and personal. To think such a beautiful space was once a wheelchair store. This is a living room cafe with couches, a streetlamp plonked in the middle of it and not one, but two fireplaces, which exponentially increases your chances of getting some fireside action.

Café Kafka – Vienna’s fireplace cafes

We came in for a quick cup of coffee and ended up staying for hours on a very well-worn leather couch, filling our bellies with a pesto-tomato-mozzarella toast and soaking in the atmosphere that a room full of people’s chatter creates. Herein lies the magic of Café Kafka, a small bohemian looking café that, even though it’s located just off the busy Mariahilfer Straße, is still a secret spot amongst locals seeking peace, good coffee and a fire place during the day, or a lively, handsomely rugged night spot. The tables are small and normally just for two, so you can easily sneak in there alone for a quiet read.

Café Kafka performs the role of being a traditional Viennese coffeehouse (opened in 1880) with a few modifications. Besides having blues, soul, or other fitting music genres floating around the place (it’s atypical for a coffeehouse to play music), the Goulash and Würstels are replaced by a vegan and vegetarian focused menu. There’s a bohemian art vibe here, which is added to by the black and white portraits decorating the yellow, nicotine-stained walls. It’s usually filled with people leisurely reading their papers, working on their laptops, or meeting up for study groups.

Café Espresso – Vienna’s fireplace cafes

Cafe Espresso possesses more character, history and stories than a 90-year-old drag queen. Cafe Espresso isn’t decked out in all their retro glam because retro and vintage are hip – no, Cafe Espresso is just an old-timer that has never grown old. It’s a pleasure to sit amongst the scarlet red leather booths and baby blue walls of its insides, and the street-side Schanigarten out front makes for the perfect place to sip coffee and enjoy breakfast.

This living legend is the kind of place you can earn your hangover from the night before, and try to fight it off with a filling and fantastic breakfast the day after. The fireplace is nestled in a corner, blissfully right by the door so the warmth can be felt no matter where you manage to grab a seat.

Photos © Daniel Dutkowski (www.dutkowski.com)

Photos © Daniel Dutkowski (www.dutkowski.com)

Café Jelinek – Vienna’s fireplace cafes

Café Jelinek is one of the reasons why we love living in Vienna – it’s dripping with true Viennese coffeehouse charm and is the perfect place to spend some lazy idle hours, or time with intense thoughts. The wood oven greets you as you enter, and while there’s no seating directly next to it, the cafe is small enough so that its warmth and glow is felt throughout. And it has to be one of the cosiest places to inspire reading.

From the patine-stained walls covered with pictures of famous faces, the very well-worn wooden floor, to the comfortable scruffy velvet sofas, it feels as if nothing has changed since Jelinek became popular in the 80ies (It was actually opened by a Jewish couple back in 1910). We love the little marble coffeehouse tables, while a prime people watching position can be scored at the much prized seats by the big windows. With a collection of Stammgäste of all ages, the only challenge is getting yourself one of the comfy little booths to settle down in with a book.

Hotel Daniel Bakery – Vienna’s fireplace cafes

Stepping into Hotel Daniel’s cafe, you feel like the neighbouring botanical gardens has encroached on somebody’s delightful looking living room. It’s a thing of shabby, chic beauty. The setting is full of mismatched furniture, including a swinging sofa, and a heap of plants, while the spacious al fresco setting is surrounded by the greenery of the hotel’s front garden. While reading a book when the breakfast buffet is being served is not advisable, catching a coffee here at any other time is the dream. With lots of natural light streaming in and a few sofas to nestle into, this cafe inside this hipster hotel is a solid choice for bunkering down with a book.

Marks – Vienna’s fireplace cafes

TUE–SAT: 10am–12am
SUN: 9:30am–4pm
MON: closed


cash only

“If you need, there is a power socket by the window that you can charge your laptop on.” We were already in love with Marks before the friendly waiter came to us and offered us this very helpful information. How many restaurants/cafes would offer such information freely! And that’s the thing about Marks that makes it special – how authentically friendly it is to everybody that walks through their doors.

There’s plenty of seating and tables to read at, or there’s piles of magazines and newspapers to flick through. Anything you order on the menu here (food or drink) is enough to inspire your intellect to go to great heights. And from most afternoons onwards they have a big fire raging in their open fireplace. This cafe really is warm and welcoming, whether it’s for the lavish breakfasts in the morning, a chilled evening of drinks with friends, or an afternoon of getting lost in a book.

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