Suzana is an amazing makeup artist based in Bucharest and I and Gabriela highly recommend her to our brides and friends. Our journey together started in her makeup studio three months before Suzana and Ben’s engagement and wedding in Vienna. That time we arrived in her studio to photograph the getting ready of Andreea and Vlad, another amazing couple we love based in the United States. When Suzana wrote to us the first e-mail, a week after Andreea and Vlad’s fabulous destination wedding in Bucharest, she said like that: “I want you and Gabriela to photograph my weddings, because me and my fiance will have two weddings, one in Vienna and one in Bucharest. Andreea and Vlad said to me so many beautiful things about you and your professionalism. I checked your portfolio and they were right indeed. I love your photographs. Let’s meet again as soon as possible. Can’t wait!“
So we set up a meeting in our studio as soon as possible. We met Ben then and we found out he grew up in Vienna, that’s why they will have their signing papers in an intimate ceremony in the Austrian capital. They also said to us their wedding in Romania will be different. And it was indeed, it was a beautiful jewish wedding I will tell you more about in one of my future blog posts.
But let’s get back to our “affair” in Vienna.
WINTER ENGAGEMENT SESSION IN VIENNA
In the beginning we were supposed to go to Vienna for 3 days just to photograph their intimate wedding ceremony, but Ben said: “Look, guys, we will be there for one week, why don’t you come and stay with us for the whole period? We will also celebrate Suzana’s birthday and we would love to have you there!” I had checked my calendar because I wasn’t sure if I could be back on time after my first visit in Nigeria. Fortunately my flight back was planned 1 day and a half before their planned departure to Vienna. We accepted their proposal. Then Ben booked for us a very nice hotel close to the city center (several tram stations) and our flight tickets so we could be in the same plane. One week in Vienna right before Christmas…we were very excited! I won’t tell you more about their intimate wedding ceremony now, I aim to tell this amazing story later, but I will show you how beautiful they were that day and I will continue with our winter engagement session adventure in Vienna (yes! we planned it too).
WHAT TO DO IN VIENNA AROUND CHRISTMAS?
We didn’t have a bucket list (like always when we travel) and we were more like “go with the flow” and listen to Suzana and Ben’s advice. Before setting the day for the engagement session we asked them to leave us two days to scout the city as we’ve never been to Vienna around Christmas. All we knew was there would be a lot of Christmas lights. 🙂 There are many places to visit (most of Vienna’s landmarks are in the Innere Stadt (Old Town), encircled by the Ringstrasse, Vienna’s grand boulevard) or things to do, but for the session we preferred to go around the Winter Markets (Stephanplatz, Rathausplatz, Schönbrunn), Vienna Opera House, The Imperial Palace, we walked a bit on Kärntner Strasse, the most famous shopping street in Central Vienna and we took a horse-drawn carriage tour. As the daylight was short, we went more for night shots.
Other things to do in Vienna around Christmas:
- walk 8 miles on the old streets of the city like we did;
- have the best Jack Potato like we had – there is a hidden booth somewhere in Rathausplatz Winter Market – amazing flavor and taste;
- take the underground;
- visit Sigmund Freud museum;
- have the best Würstel in Vienna (there is a place close to the Opera House, but I can’t remember the name right now…it is Ben’s favorite place);
- have a Wiener schnitzel;
- discover Vienna’s nightlife, go to a nightclub on a Saturday and have fun until the morning like we had;
- go to Demel Cafe and Cake shop to taste the best cakes in the world and also to have a coffee with Apfelstrudel (Empress Sisi loved this place);
- spend one day and money on Kärntner Strasse shops;
- go to a concert in one of Vienna’s churches around Center;
- buy a 16GB mobile data sim card and consume all in 7 days;
- shoot like 1000 street photographs and never look through them;
- drink 10 mugs of Viennese punch a day;
- travel by tram without paying the ticket.
ENGAGEMENT SESSION IN VIENNA
As I said, we did not have a proper bucket list, but we promised to offer some great memories to Suzana and Ben. And we believe we did it! Enjoy! I promise I will get back soon with their intimate wedding ceremony story. It was another epic day!
Is it worth planning your engagement session in Vienna around Christmas? If you love winter, Christmas lights, punch, würstel and Jack Potatoes, the answer is YES! There is one more thing: you might think the city is expensive around Christmas, but the truth is it isn’t at all.
Thank you guys! It was a week to remember and I am sure we will get back to this beautiful city sometime around Christmas!