The Kaiservilla in Bad Ischl was the summer residence of Emperor Franz Joseph I and Empress Elisabeth of Austria, known as Sisi. Originally the palace was a Biedermeier villa belonging to a Viennese notary named Josef August Eltz. In 1850 it was purchased by Dr Eduard Mastalier. After Franz Joseph's engagement to Princess Elisabeth of Bavaria in 1853, Franz Joseph's mother, Princess Sophie of Bavaria, purchased the villa as a wedding present for the couple.

In subsequent years, the villa was altered and expanded in a Neoclassical style by Antonio Legrenzi. The extant central portion was expanded towards the park and the originally posterior portion of the house was converted to form the entrance with Classical columns and tympana. Two additional wings were constructed.

The villa is surrounded by a large park in the English Style. The architectural ensemble in its contemporary form was completed in 1860. Construction was significantly slowed by the fact that it could not proceed during the summer months due to the presence of the royal family.

Today, the mansion is home to the Archduke Markus Habsburg, but also offers grounds tours to the public.



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Founded: 1860
Category: Palaces, manors and town halls in Austria

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User Reviews

Martin LaVenture (2 years ago)
The Imperial Villa in Ischl, the Emperor's summer residence, for the Monarchy and family. Still owned by the family and the tour shows a few of the important rooms. Some family members live in a part of the home non seen on the tour. Fewer crowds than in the residence in Vienna and located in a quaint town. The villa is interesting to hose who need a full dose of the Habsburg experience. A brief stop is adequate.
Sanat Sahasrabudhe (2 years ago)
Lovely house and surrounding gardens of Kaiser Franz Joseph I. There is great information about the Kaiser and his family inside the house. The exterior architecture is visually striking, and goes really well with the backdrop of the mountains. The house is only about 5-10 minutes walk from the railway station, so can be great to view during a stopover on the popular tourist route to Hallstatt from Salzburg or Vienna (trains from those two cities usually include a stop in Bad Ischl).
Rony Wang (2 years ago)
Nice big English style park and view of Villa belonged to the emperor Franz Josef and Empress Sisi until 1912. Park visit costs 5€ and tour of Kaiservilla cost a few Euros more.
Carol Geiger (2 years ago)
We took the house tour and walked the grounds. It's a beautiful home with much of the originals furniture and the story of the Kaiser and his wife is interesting. The grounds are beautiful and natural. We walked into town for lunch.
Rudolf Strutz (2 years ago)
A very special place. Here you feel the way how the Austrian Empire lived. Empire „Franz Joseph I“ spend practically every summer in Bad Ischl. The Villa is full of memories. Being there, you should also visit the great park.
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