Espresso Bar “Unger und Klein” in the Highrise

The highrise in Herrengasse is a famous and refined construction of the modern age in Vienna´s city centre. Apart from its decent – almost dry – appearance, it exudes the brilliance of its original size and international modernity until the present day.

In order to keep the house valued and preserved in future times, BEHF Architects takes, in close co-operation with the monument conservation, architectural measures in numerous areas to meet modern requirements and to preserve or restore historical qualities. Here, the entrance to the highrise in Herrengasse with the glass cylinder as corner formation plays a major role.

With the wine merchants UNGER and KLEIN, an operator could be acquired who is familiar with the special house as well as with the qualities of the location and also values them. The idea to create a nice, small gastronomy location in the turret has been marked by the extremely restricted room situation which stands in spatial opposition to the wide sightlines Michaelerplatz, Niederösterreichisches Landhaus and OSCE – but absolutely corresponds to the proportionality of most of the apartments in the highrise.

A division between bar, preparation area and standing table; shelf, seating and standing spaces is not possible – and not planned. The cylindrical form consciously does not give direction, no front and back, no inside and outside. All materials and provisions concerning form subordinate to the inventory and the structural culture of the highrise in quality, details and execution – as if they always existed.

The dominant structure of the shelf of the espresso bar consists of polished stainless steel. Its reflection of the surrounding area integrates itself sparklingly and brightly in the substance of the inventory, which is mirrored extensively of black marble glass.

The profiles of the glasing and the portal, the ground terrazzo entirely correspond to the existing materials. Cognac-coloured leather covering and stainless steel sheeting of the bar as well as an artistic bamboo framework at the ceiling meet the spirit and love to the material of the time of the building´s construction – and are therefore, timelessly elegant.


The coffee and wine bar has brought a unique, inviting atmosphere to the high-rise building. The friendly open elegance creates the frame for new ideas and future life at the ground floor of the Herrengasse and highrise above the city centre.

  • Category: Restaurant
  • Status: Completed
  • Location: Vienna, Austria
  • Completion: May 2014
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