The ten most beautiful Cafés in the world according to the classification by UCityGuidesThe coffee, as a beverage, first appeared in Turkey in 1585, and crossed its borders when, in1683, the Ottoman Turks invaded Vienna. There is another historical reference stating thatit was in Venice that it began to be sold commercially from 1638. Anyway, it was in the 18thcentury that coffee houses began to appear around the city and then throughout Europe.However, only in the late 19th and early 20th centuries European cafes have becomegathering places preferred by intellectuals, epoch in which the ornamentation of these"hangouts" started to have characteristics of cultural institutions and interior decorationresembling palatial ones.
The New York Palace Hotel, a Boscolo Luxury Hotel, – of which the New York Café is part - was built in eclectic style between the years 1891 and 1895.
The New York Café is located on the ground floor of that hotel, now owned and named after the international group Boscolo.
The Café, however,maintains its alreadylegendary name - CaféNew York – and is aspot of obligatorypassage in the city, aliving legend that, atthe beginning of the20th century attractedthe citys cultural elite.Its exterior is adornedwith bronze statueswhile the interiorimpresses with itsmonumental headroom,frescoes andchandeliers.The tables and sofasmodern lines createexquisite contrast.
This place, that was sacred to the artists of the early 20th century, maintains a stunning interior with gilts, ornamental lamps, ceiling paintings, mixed with contemporary furnishings.
Located in a privileged position under the arcades of the Procuratie Nuove in Piazza San Marco, atthe Caffè Florian you can still feel the Venetian tradition, while as well being the meeting point of several worlds.
The Grand Venice can only be seen in its palaces and museums, but it’s in its historic cafés that it can be felt, still exuding the elegant effluvium of the 18th century, especially in the most impressive of all, the Caffè Florian in its splendor of frescoes and mirrored interior. .
Café Florian that has been a meeting point for writers and artists in the past, at present, stands out as a living museum. At its desks, sat Charles Dickens, Proust, Byron and other renowned writers.
Housed in a historic palace, the Café Central , like most of Vienna’s historical cafés, that receives a great deal of tourists visiting the city, remains a local attraction, offering live classical music in the afternoon.
The Café Central has marble pillars, big chandeliers and arched ceilings that welcomed intellectuals since the turn of the 19th century.
At present, with a more eclectic frequency, the “Central Kaffeehaus” is still a place that attracts philosophers, thinkers and writers. Historically, it is said that here was where Trotsky had planned the Russian Revolution.
The Café Imperial belongs to the Prague Art Deco Imperial Hotel, five stars, dated 1914, which is located in central Prague protected by UNESCO.
Many of the great Prague cafes have disappeared after the Second World War, while other survived and were restored to its former glory – as Café Imperial .
The Café Imperial has chairs in bright mahogany finely worked, with seats upholstered in pale yellow leather; the waiters invariably wear an immaculate white shirt.
The Café Imperialis still the largest ofthese examples, and isknown as a jewel of ArtDeco.Its mosaic of ornate tileis one of the mostincredibly beautifulscenery in the world forbreakfast, afternoontea, and even aselection of Czechdishes.
The tile panel sits aboveanother one, artisticallycarved in wood.The taps in the bathroomwere cast in the form ofswan wings in flight positionand the faucet waterspoutcoincides with the beak ofthe bird in its outside.The restoration of thecomplex added a new touchof class to this place,maintaining the aura of thepast and unforgettableatmosphere. There are notmany places like theImperial in Prague.
It is in the second largest city of Portugal that locates one of the finest cafés around the world, with the name of Café Majestic. Opened in 1921 under the name "Elite", the café was immediately associated with the frequency of that epoch’s distinguished people.
The Majestic is one of the most impressive of all the cafés in the country and one of the mostattractive in the world. From its facade to the interior, Café Majestic is still a beautiful scenery for cultural events, making it more than just a tourist attraction.
In its Art Nouveau style in the symmetry of the curved wooden frames, in the large mirrors interspersedwith metal worked chandeliers that delimit the walls with a clever optical play of amplitude, retains its entire former splendor and invites to revive the fascinating Belle Époque. .
Founded in 1894, the Confeitaria Colombo holds still today its original style: art nouveauof l9l3. There are 4 floors with 3 spacious lounges decorated with eight Belgian beveled mirrors, measuring 3 x 6 m and weighing 1 ½ tons each, all framed in rosewood.
Its balconies are in Italian marble and the furniture of all rooms exquisite. Five cupboards house early 20th Century china and crystal goblets with gold embroidery.
Culminating it all, on the last floorthe ceiling is a skylight in colorfulmosaics bathing the restaurant withnatural light.Among its distinguished visitors,detach King Albert of Belgium inl920, and Queen Elizabeth ofEngland in l968.Besides Olavo Bilac, were alsoregulars at Colombo: Jose doPatrocinio, Oscar Lopez, LuisMurat, Placido Jr., Pedro Rabelo,Manoel Carlos, Father Severianoand Lima Barreto.From the round of presidents of theRepublic stand out Getulio Vargasand Juscelino Kubitschek.
Founded in 1860, Café Gambrinus was soon recognized by Royal Decree as "Supplier of the Royal House."
The Gambrinus is legendarynot only for being the oldestcafé in the city, but becausesince it opened in mid-19thcentury has welcomed royalty,celebrities and artists attractedby its beautiful interior.Throughout its history, itreceived personalities from allcountries and loyal customerssuch as Gabriele DAnnunzio,who in a coffee table, wrote thepoem "The Vucchella" later setto music by FP Tosti, andrecorded by Caruso in 1919;Benedetto Croce; MatildeSerao; Eduardo Scarpetta;Totò; De Filippo (it); ErnestHemingway; Oscar Wilde; Guyde Maupassant; Jean PaulSartre, That all marked theirpresence through a poem, adedication or a photo.
The Gambrinus’ interior decoration was entrusted to the best painters of the Neapolitan school, and today still you can admire its frescoes, as well as floral friezes announcing the Art Nouveau.
Argentina – Buenos Aires – Palermo Park Café Tortoni
Café Tortoni - Opened in 1858, it was moved to its present location only in 1880, but its former entrance was by Rivadavia Avenue. Since 1898 its main entrance is by the Avenue of May. .
The Tortoni was obligatory reference for anyone in the twentieth century Argentine culture. Jorge Luis Borges and Carlos Gardel, the big names that Argentina gave the world, were regulars. It was said that Borges and his companions were poor and spent little, but gave notoriety to the home.
Alfonsina Storni, Arthur Rubinstein, José Ortega, were some of the personalities connected with the fame of the Café Tortoni. Today, besides a remarkable library, the house offers place to read, appreciate painting, enjoy music, dance, dine, see shows, chat, play snooker, listen poetry...
In one of the streets of greater luxury and most famous of Rome - Via dei Condotti – since 250 years there’s the Caffè Greco, that has served coffee to many of the historical figures of Europe, and remains a refuge for today’s intellectuals and politicians, in a traditional and striking atmosphere.
Under decoration based on mirrors, romantic paintings, golden, wood, marble and epochfurnishings that deliver a unique charm to each of the small rooms that make up its interior, became regular visitors to the Caffè Greco, Stendhal, Goethe, Byron Liszt, Keats, Ibsen, Hans Christian Andersen, among many others.
Images: All drawn from the Net with credits to their respective authors.Music: Die Fledermaus (“The Bat") - an operetta composed by Johann Strauss – (edited). Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra, conducted by Seiji OzawaCreation, research, compilation and formatting: Delza Dias Ferreira new e-mail firstname.lastname@example.orgEnglish version: Flavio Musa de Freitas Guimarães www.culturesandart.com São Paulo, IX - 2011