It’s midnight in Vienna. The operas are over; the amblers along the Ringstrasse have long since retired to bed. But on the Danube, the beat goes on.
Apart from an eye-catching swimming pool, Badeschiff is also a nightclub on a converted freighter in the Danube. It embodies the anarchic, grunge-inflected hedonism of Vienna’s riotous young. Electronic music blares over the beer garden until long after the clock strikes midnight; an enormous public pool runs the length of the freighter’s roof.
During the day, it’s a bucolic pleasure-boat: a place for harried mothers to bring their easily-distracted children. But it’s in the evening, as the Danube Canal transforms into Vienna’s best open-air nightclub, that the Badeschiff really shines.
Loud, smoky, crowded – boasting three-euro Jaeger shots – the Badeshiff is hardly the Opera Ball. But tonight, in this warm autumn breeze that has given Vienna a Mediterranean atmosphere, there’s nowhere that I’d rather be.