Swarovski has had a history of tradition and success since the family-owned company was founded in 1895. Founder Daniel Swarovski had the vision to regard crystal not just as a material, but as a source of inspiration. Multimedia artist André Heller created a world of wonder to celebrate Swarovski’s hundredth anniversary in 1995 – Swarovski Kristallwelten (Swarovski Crystal Worlds). Here, renowned artists and designers interpret crystal in their own way and turn the sparkling material into unique concepts of experience and space at the Chambers of Wonder at Swarovski Crystal Worlds. The Chambers borrow from the historical chamber of wonder at Ambras Castle, a castle dating back to the sixteenth-century. Swarovski Crystal Worlds has since become one of Austria’s most popular attractions, catering to guests of all ages and presenting a unique experience for fans of crystal and connoisseurs of art for nearly 25 years.
Swarovski Crystal Worlds embraces the philosophy of continual innovation and has already gone through many structural enhancements. The largest expansion took place in 2015 on the occasion of Swarovski’s 120th anniversary, and resulted in the Swarovski Crystal Worlds doubling in size. It was adorned with an extensive garden landscape featuring novel art installations that create an inviting atmosphere in which visitors may relax and linger. Since its foundation in 1995, Swarovski Crystal Worlds has delighted millions of visitors, with a couple from India recently being welcomed as 15 millionth visitors. A mix of art, culture, entertainment and shopping, it continues to evolve in 2020, as it celebrates 25 sparkling years.
Photo Courtesy: Swarovski
At the Swarovski Crustal Worlds, there is an immense wealth of interpretations as different artists and designers perceive the beautiful crystals through their own lenses. This is precisely the artistic principle upon which the Chambers of Wonder and the sculptures and installations in the garden have been established.
Indian star designer Manish Arora loves working with crystal. His design vocabulary is characterized by expressive storytelling and brash, vibrant colors. His Chamber of Wonder installation, Ready to Love beckons visitors to enter a fantastical world full of emotions. A twinkling stairway showcases sparkling messages of love, leading to a colorful utopia birthed from the artist’s imagination. Here, the facade of an Indian temple reveals itself in dazzling neon light: the Palace of Love. The installation is built around a core of 19 heart-fairies, which have been fashioned using traditional techniques of Indian craftsmanship.
Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama exhibits one of her most spectacular mirror installations to date in Wattens, entitled “Chandelier of Grief.” The central element is a rotating chandelier of Swarovski crystal, whose luster comes to life in a room lined with mirrors.
A very special collaboration between Tord Boontje and Alexander McQueen will be seen from May 2020 in Wattens, titled, A Sparkling Tree. It is currently exhibited in the Chamber of Wonder, and is the only experience of its kind in the entire world.
In the garden around the charismatic head of the Giant, you will find spaces of beauty, inspiration, energy, care, aesthetics – and legends. An astounding landscape emerged in the course of the generous expansion of Swarovski Crystal Worlds, and it fits naturally into the mountainous surroundings of Tyrol. One of the highlights is the Crystal Cloud, which consists of around 800,000 hand-mounted crystals. South of the iconic Giant, the play tower and the innovative outdoor playground landscape provide ample fun and frolic to children.
In July 2019 Swarovski collaborated with award-winning artist-designer Jaime Hayon to create the Carousel, a magnificent interactive installation adorned with 15 million Swarovski crystals. The experience is open to visitors at Swarovski Crystal Worlds in Wattens, Austria.
Besides nourishment for the mind, Swarovski Crystal Worlds also offers culinary delights at Daniels Kristallwelten, which serves international, regional, and seasonal dishes and exquisite desserts. The atmosphere is truly exceptional: in the airy pavilion designed by the Norwegian architectural firm Snøhetta, visitors feel as if they were sitting right in the middle of the garden of the Giant. The restaurant and Bar are freely accessible to all – even if you’re yet to visit the Chambers of Wonder – thus making it an ideal place for the family or friends to congregate for a sumptuous meal.
This year, Swarovski Crystal Worlds celebrates its 25th anniversary with new attractions in the Giant. Two new Chambers of Wonder will be presented in 2020, of which the first will open in May 2020, as a year-round winter wonderland. Always at the cutting edge Swarovski Crystal Worlds is spread out over 7.5 hectares with the Giant’s realm offering a one-of-a-kind blend of contemporary art, classic history, captivating nature, and a year-round program of events. In summer 2019, Swarovski Crystal Worlds hosted the famous Circus Roncalli and brought a glimpse of behind-the-scenes circus life to the visitors. In July and August 2020, guests can look forward to Circus Roncalli as they revisit the garden of the Swarovski Crystal Worlds, with new artists and spectacles on show!
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