Vienna, 15th District: Fünfhaus
The 15th district, Fünfhaus…well, let′s start with the good things about it: Real estate in Fünfhaus is remarkably cheap. The area around the Westbahnhof Station is home to slightly less than 70,000 residents, quite a multi-cultural crowd (Turks and Albanians).
It enjoys a lot of media attention, especially when bums kill each other and eat their victim′s brain (I am referring to an incident of 2007, in which the culprit was accused of just that kind of cannibalism). But there is more to Fünfhaus than bums and immigrants.
Drug traffic, for example, or prostitution. The last porn cinema of Vienna can be found in Fünfhaus, still resisting against the ever growing competition from the DVD market. And what would Vienna be without its punks? These fabulous young people that reject society and its organisations, recently moved into a house in Fünfhaus that was generously provided by the city of Vienna. Certainly adds a bit of colour to the district.
1683 to Today: Rape & Plunder through Turkish Troops
Some history of Fünfhaus: Originally, the district′s land was outside of the outer city walls (in my opinion, it should have stayed there). As such, the villages in this region were completely destroyed during the second Turkish Siege in 1683. The big mistake in the history of Fünfhaus followed after the Habsburg′s victory over the Turks: Fünfhaus was re-built. Especially in the 19th century, Fünfhaus was primarily an army base; the barracks are still in place around the Schmelz area. Recent years saw the return of the Turks, but also some cute attempts by the city of Vienna to "re-vive" Fünfhaus.
In terms of sightseeing, why not looking for a taxi that takes you somewhere else? Anywhere else? If you are adventurous enough to stay in Fünfhaus, there is the Stadthalle, one of the biggest concert venues of Vienna. The Westbahnhof is a very important transport hub and connects both Vienna with Western Austria and illegal prostitutes with their clients. Just outside the Westbahnhof, the Mariahilferstraße originates and hints at the many shopping facilities in the area and the Vienna Public Library is near.
South of the Westbahnhof, you find the church Maria vom Siege, a dark brick building with a mighty cupola. As a church, it is not terribly interesting, but makes a good landmark from the Gloriette in Schönbrunn; the hill in the park of the Imperial Palace grants excellent views on the church and the rest of Vienna. The best thing about it is, though, that you can enjoy Fünfhaus without actually being there!
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Sightseeing Guides to Vienna's Districts
District Overview - 1st District (Innere Stadt) - 2nd District (Leopoldstadt) - 3rd District (Landstraße) - 4th District (Wieden) - 5th District (Margareten) - 6th District (Mariahilf) - 7th District (Neubau) - 8th District (Josefstadt) - 9th District (Alsergrund) - 10th District (Favoriten) - 11th District (Simmering) - 12th District (Meidling) - 13th District (Hietzing) - 14th District (Penzing) - 15th District (Fünfhaus) - 16th District (Ottakring) - 17th District (Hernals) - 18th District (Währing) - 19th District (Döbling) - 20th District (Brigittenau) - 21st District (Floridsdorf) - 22nd District (Donaustadt) - 23rd District (Liesing)