Friday, January 29, 2016

Schonbrunn Palace: Majesty of A Great Edifice

The most romantic of Habsburg Palaces is the Schonbrunn Palace. When you set foot on this place, you will feel the nostalgia for romance which flourished during the imperial times.  

The palace is panoramic and ornate in its design. It evokes a character apt for the royals.   

Schonbrunn Palace

Me in front of the Schonbrunn Palace

The lawn of the palace is manicured in distinctive royal style with exuberant statues dotting the landscape.  

A statue at the side of the palace

The palace's manicured lawn

Regal walkway covered with vines

Among the sights of interest in the palace complex are the Neptune Fountain and the Gloriette, which in its evocative style can make one deeply attached to the place. 

Panoramic view of the Gloriette with the Neptune
Fountain in the foreground 

The Neptune Fountain

Beautiful ducks swimming at the Neptune Fountain's pool 

View of the palace with the city of Vienna in the backdrop

View of Vienna from the Gloriette

The Gloriette lit at night

The Gloriette is so magnificent when lit at night.

Lovely lake at the back of the Gloriette

Ancient ruins near the Gloriette

Visiting Schonbrunn Palace is like a travel in time, perhaps a travel to Austrian utopia envisioned in the noble minds of the Habsburgs. 

Friday, January 22, 2016

Peter Drucker Forum Gala Night at Marx Halle

The Peter Drucker Forum features among its activities a gala night for networking of participants and awarding of the Peter Drucker Challenge winners. 

For the 2015 gala night, it was held at the Marx Halle, a venue which has architectural lightness and open character. It is located at Vienna's 3rd district.     

Entrance to Marx Halle

Marx Halle signboard at the facade

Romantically lit hallway to the banquet hall

The venue was set in European beau ideal for a candlelight dinner. The foods served were of fine gastronomy and satisfying at best.  

The gala night featured elegant candlelight dinner.  

Dr. Richard Straub delivering his remarks 

The participants to the forum's gala night

My fellow Drucker Challenge winners during the gala night

Me with Ms. Namita Narkar, a fellow AIM alumni who won First Prize in the Entrepreneurs/Managers Category of the Peter Drucker Challenge 2015   

The night was capped with performances from Zoe, a famous Austrian singer and a band of string musicians.   

String musicians rendering the participants good 
music before Zoe's performance.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Peter Drucker Forum: A Global Management Forum

True to its value proposition, the Peter Drucker Forum is indeed a global management forum powered by high caliber business leaders, entrepreneurs and innovators as speakers. 

I was privileged to participate in the said forum which took place last November 5-6, 2015 at the Aula der Wissenschaften in Vienna, Austria.
The Peter Drucker Forum 2015 was held on November 5-6, 2015 at
Aula der Wissenschaften, Vienna, Austria 

The forum was opened by its founder Dr. Richard Straub, who emphasized in his welcome remarks the importance of distinctive human capabilities, the central theme of the forum.   

Dr. Richard Straub delivering the Welcome Remarks

Andrew Hill, the Associate Editor and Management Editor of Financial Times served as the Conference Chair. 

The conference was chaired by Andrew Hill, Associate Editor
and Management Editor of Financial Times 

The first day of the conference tackled topics such as "Entering the Brave New World of Digital - Disruption as the New Normal?", "What does a Technology-Driven World Mean for Management?", "How the Internet Economy Changes the Rules?", "Creativity, Intuition and the Algorithm" and "Leaders versus Technocrats: Creating the "Good Society"?"   

Tom Davenport, a Babson College professor sharing his ideas

Marten Mickos, former CEO of MySQL and Eucalyptus
delivering his speech

Adi Ignatius, Editor-in-Chief of Harvard Business
Review moderating the discussion

The session on "Creativity, Intuition and the Algorithm"

The second day of the forum featured topics such as "Humans First-Technology Second", "Questions to Global Business Leaders: How can we Leverage Technology to Create the "Human" 21st Century Corporation?" and "Self-Management in the Digital Age".

There were also parallel sessions which delved on the topics "The Creative Economy Enabled by Technology? Report on the Findings of the Learning Consortium for the Creative Economy", "Smart Cities - Living Laboratories for Human-centric Technology" and "Will Technology lead us into an Entrepreneurial Society?"    

Rosanne Somerson, President of Rhode Island School of Design
discussing her school's design paradigm

Sherry Turkle of Massachusetts Institute of Technology sharing
insights on "Humans First-Technology Second"

Gillian Tett, the US Managing Editor and Columnist of Financial Times
moderating the discussion on leveraging technology to create
the human 21st century corporation

The parallel session on "Will Technology lead us
into an Entrepreneurial Society?"

The discussions at the forum were indeed very insightful and packed with novel ideas. It also became my avenue for refreshing my MBA. In my mind, any business executive or manager can gain so much from attending this forum as it provides ample opportunity for networking.   

The forum is sponsored by Peter Drucker Society Europe and if you are keen to attend, information can be found on its website   

Friday, January 15, 2016

Cafe Menagerie at Belvedere Palace

A visit to Belvedere will not be complete without dining at Cafe Menagerie, a cafe inside the upper palace itself.

The cafe offers variety of Viennese dishes all of which looks delicious. I tried the tarts and vegetable salad which are very delicate to my palate.

Viennese tarts and vegetable salad

Looking at the portraits of Franz Josef I and Elisabeth on the wall renders the place regal ambiance giving its diners an experience of royal dining. Just imagine dining a la Franz Josef?

Portrait of Franz Josef I

Portrait of Elisabeth

Dining at the cafe should never be missed as it is one of the best experiences Vienna can offer.

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Belvedere Palace: Dwelling of Princely Magnificence

The palaces of Austria evokes a feeling of nostalgia for a grandeur that never diminish in time. One can feel this on a visit to the Belvedere Palace.   

The architecture of the palace itself is a classical marvel, that our generation and those of the future will ever look back to and admire.

He are the pictures of the palace which in the entirety of its magnificence are panoramic and worthy of appreciation.    

The panoramic Upper Belvedere

The equally noble Lower Belvedere

You will be ushered into the complex via this majestic gate which truly reflects the nobility of its original inhabitants.

The majestic portal

On the front lawn, you can see the picturesque fountain reflecting the palace itself and the trees with autumn leaves.   

The fountain on the front lawn

The most famous exhibit on its august halls is "The Kiss" painted by Gustav Klimt. It is said to be the world's most famous kiss.

A reprint of "The Kiss" by Gustav Klimt

Upon entrance to the palace, you will be greeted by the statues of these Austrian queens in full royal regalia. 

The palace as a museum and art center exhibits works of art in almost every corner. Some are old paintings and some are sculptures.  

A piece of art on display

An old painting of ostrich

A Baroque style wallpaper equivalent

A quadratura of heavenly glamour

The interior of the museum

The garden in between the Upper Belvedere and Lower Belvedere is dotted with magnificent statues of various themes.    

There are also more fountains featuring finely sculpted characters from Greek mythology. The details of the sculptures are simply amazing.   

The garden also features ornately designed stairs in classic style and a small labyrinth. 

The ornately designed stairs 

Entrance to the labyrinth

The exit adjacent to Lower Belvedere is adorned with the following statues depicting gods and goddesses in Greek mythology. 

I took a photo of myself in front of this finely designed structure. It resembles a special place for someone of noble stature.   

The Belvedere Palace indeed resonates what is inherently noble, profoundly great and intrinsically beautiful...