|Austrian Hospice in the 19th Century|
After the foundation stone was laid on New Year's Eve 1856 the Hospice became one of the city's leading ecclesiastical guesthouses before being taken over by other parties. It served as an orphanage, internment camp, officers' school and military hospital. In 1985, with assistance from Jerusalem Mayor Teddy Kollek, the building was returned to its original function and is currently run by local and Austrian staff and volunteers.
One of its most famous guests was Kaiser Franz Josef who stayed here in 1869 on his way to the opening of the Suez Canal. In addition to being Emperor of Austria, King of Hungary and monarch of other states in the Austro-Hungarian Empire, he also took the title of "King of Jerusalem".
A mosaic in the charming chapel depicts him pointing the way to the Holy City leading his new Crusade.
Built in the style of Vienna's Ringstrasse palaces of the 19th century, the pilgrims' hospice is a wonderful place to enjoy a coffee and strudel in the Viennese Cafe or sip a beer in the well-tended gardens.
|View from the roof|