Di. 24.05.2022

Espresso at last! The Café Arabia on Kohlmarkt

Café Arabia opened in 1951 on Vienna’s Kohlmarkt, in the middle of the city center. It imported the Italian espresso culture into the traditional coffee-making metropolis, which caused heated debates. Equally spectacular was the coffee house’s demise: In 1999 it had to give way to a boutique, which both regular guests and architecture connoisseurs regretted. The history of the café and its founder, the entrepreneur Alfred Weiss (1890–1973), has meanwhile faded into oblivion and is now to be brought back into consciousness.
 

Press releases


Fashion show at the opening, 10th March 1951
© AzW, Foto: Otto Tomann
Interior of the Arabia on Kohlmarkt
© ÖNB, Foto: Lucca Chmel
Arabia advertising
© Sammlung AD
Tea caddy for Arabia tea, design by Joseph Binder
© Sammlung AD
Coffee caddy for Arabia coffee with logo by Joseph Binder
© Sammlung AD
Arabia booth at the Vienna fair, 1949, architect Oswald Haerdtl
© Jüdisches Museum Wien
Envelope of an invitation for Arabia Espresso, 1950s
© Sammlung AD
Counter at the Arabia on Kohlmarkt
© Sammlung AD
Promotional photo for Arabia coffee
© Sammlung AD
Example of a Gaggia classica espresso machine
© Museo le macchine da caffè, Modena
fLTR. Bruno Marek, Alfred Weiss and Franz Jonas in front of the Arabia pavilion at the Vienna fair
© Privatbesitz
Teapot Café Arabia
© Sammlung AD, Foto: nafez rerhuf
Lucie and Alfred Weiss in Rome, mid-1940s
© Privatbesitz
Alfred Weiss with politician Leopold Figl
© Privatbesitz
Exhibition view 1
© David Bohmann
Exhibition view 2
© David Bohmann
Exhibition view 3
© David Bohmann
Exhibition view 4
© David Bohmann
Exhibition view 5
© David Bohmann
Exhibition view 6
© David Bohmann
Exhibition view 7
© David Bohmann
Exhibition view 8
© David Bohmann
Exhibition view 9
© David Bohmann
Exhibition view 10
© David Bohmann



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