Café Museum is a traditional Viennese café located in the first district of Innere Stadt in Vienna, Austria. The café was opened in 1899. The original interior was designed by the famous architect Adolf Loos. The café became a meeting place for Viennese artists.
Café Museum History
The Café Museum was founded in a building designed in 1872 by Otto Thienemann. Ludwig Frisch, who opened the café in 1899, chose the name referring to the Café zum Museum, which is located next to the Kunsthistorisches Museum.
The décor of the café was influenced by the simple and sober style, which was expressed with the bentwood chairs of the company Gebrüder Thonet. In consideration of this, Ludwig Hevesi created the nickname of Café Nihilismus (café nihilism) for coffee. The front is also kept in a very simple style - nowadays only the gold letters “Café Museum” are seen on a white background.
In the early 1930s, architect Josef Zotti, a pupil of Josef Hoffmann, redesigned the café. He installed semicircular loggias and sofas with red leather along the walls. So he created a living room feel that was in contrast to the previous design.
After the 2003 renovation, which reconstructed Loos' original design, some of the original objects made by Zotti are found in the Viennese imperial furniture collection. The Loos reconstruction was criticized for its lack of authenticity and uncomfortable furnishings.
The café was refurbished again in 2003 and no longer retains the interior designed by Adolf Loos. At the end of 2009, the Café Museum was closed until its activity was resumed by Irmgard and Berndt Querfeld in the summer of 2010