While Innsbruck is unquestionably Austrian, don’t expect traditional Austrian après ski – there is no oompah music or dancing on tables in ski boots here. Après ski in the centre of Innsbruck is much more sophisticated and there are several bars with magnificent views over the city and mountains. For more active après, there are floodlit slopes resorts including Kühtai, served by late-night free ski buses.
Cloud 9 Igloo
Located up at the Nordkette ski area 20 minutes by train from the centre of Innsbruck, the Cloud 9 Igloo Bar is a snow cave with built-in ice bars. From January to April grab (when the weather is fine) grab a cool drink and sit back and relax in the comfy deckchairs at 1,905 metres altitude.
Contact: 00 43 512 293 344; facebook.com/cloud9.iglubar
The best place to relax once back in the city, is from the lofty Rooftop at aDLERS Hotel, drink in hand. Below, you’ll see the city mapped out. There are the blue lights of the Bergisle ski jump twinkling to one side, the Hofburg Palace illuminated in the centre of town, and snow-covered mountains, still tinged with pink from the setting sun.
In the cobbled heart of the old town, downstairs beneath S’Culinarium in der Altstadt wine shop, there’s a teensy tiny boutique cellar perfect for tippling excellent Austrian wines and quality schnapps. Originally a 400-year-old storage vault, it’s now a favourite post-work pitstop for locals and vinophiles.
Contact: 00 43 512 890 589; culinarium-signor.at
Dom Cafe Bar
Vaulted ceilings, chandeliers, a sweeping staircase and a huge gold gramophone set the scene for this gothic-style bar. Great punch is served into the early hours, along with horseradish-slathered wiener, goulash soup, delectable toasties and apfelstrudel.
High on the fifth floor, the aptly named Penz’s hotel bar has all-glass walls offering splendid views of the town and the mountain to complement great cocktails and wines. It’s a lively place, where Innsbruck’s young professionals gather to kibbitz and canoodle.