The Austrian Hospice (“The Austrian Hospice of the Holy Family)

The Austrian Hospice (“The Austrian Hospice of the Holy Family)

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The Austrian Hospice is an impressive hospice for pilgrims, established in 1863. The hospice was built in an important junction at the heart of the Muslim Quarter in the old city, in the intersection between Via Dolorosa and “Hagai” streets, a short walking distance from the Lion’s Gate and the Damascus Gate. The hospice was meant to host crusaders and pilgrims from Austria. In 1869 the Austro Hungarian Emperor Franz Joseph the 1st arrived for a visit, after participating in a ceremony for the opening of the Suez Chanel. In his visit, he inaugurated the hospice and even stayed there. In its early days, the building was 2- stories high. Over the years, many crusaders visited the place, and towards the end of the 19th century a 3rd story was added to the building, in order to accommodate the growing numbers of guests. Following the end of World War I, the British confiscated the building. During the British Mandate it served as an orphanage for a number of years. After the Israeli War of Independence (1948 war), the hospice served as a military hospital under Jordanian rule. After the 6- Day War, the building continued to serve as a military hospital, this time by the IDF, until it was returned to the Austrian church in the 80’s, which conducted extensive renovation after years of neglect and destruction. After it was renovated, the building returned to its original role, hosting tourists from Austria and other German- speaking countries. The hospice contains a courtyard with a garden, and also a café with Austrian cuisine. It is possible to ascend (for an entrance fee) to the roof of the building, where you can observe the breath- taking view of the old city and its surroundings.
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based on 2404 traveler reviews
  • Frank Milo
    Frank Milo
    July 4, 2023

    Right in the middle of Jerusalem's Old City you'll find this wonderful piece of Austria, almost hidden away from everything else. It has a cafe offering an authentic menu with excellent dishes and yummy desserts, and the...

  • Colin Sheppard
    Colin Sheppard
    July 8, 2023

    Wonderful place to relax after a hot day of walking. Lovely Cafe. Pleasant helpful staff. Lovely shaded garden. The rooftop view is a must-see. 360 panorama of Jerusalem. Best in the later afternoon with the sun reflecti...

  • Manuel AbuAli
    Manuel AbuAli
    July 9, 2023

    Very nice hotel, the view from the rooftop is amazing. Must go up when you visit Jerusalem. The garden cafe is beautiful with an interesting atmosphere inside the walls of the old city of Jerusalem. The staff is always fr...

  • Gavin Samuel
    Gavin Samuel
    October 4, 2023

    One of my favourite places in the old town of Jerusalem. Its amazing the peace and tranquility of this place versus the hustle and bustle of the streets just 2 floors below it. A number of Germanic dishes (i.e. schnitzel...

  • Niklas Cosmann
    Niklas Cosmann
    September 13, 2023

    Location tops it all. Located centrally in Jerusalem’s old town, the Austrian hospice is truly special. Looking back on a long history, the monumental building makes it feel like staying in a museum. Pros: +location +leve...

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  • address iconVia Dolorosa St 37, Jerusalem
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