Focus 2015: Innsbruck

Heya guys! Hopefully you guys are having a great week as we go into week three of the off-season and although it may be a little early, we’re going to start reviewing each of the cities that have applied to host next year’s Eurovision in Austria. If you’ve been a die-hard reader of our blog and been here with us since the beginning, you’ll know we’ve done this before, when reviewing the different cities in Denmark that applied to host it. If you haven’t read them, have a look here. This year, however, we’re going to be doing five articles regarding the five potential cities and kicking it off is Innsbruck. So what does the city have to offer and will the arena they’ve selected be the best possible choice ORF could pick? Have a little read below to find out!

Innsbruck's arena would be the Olympiahalle - but would it be the best choice?
Innsbruck’s arena would be the Olympiahalle – but would it be the best choice?

Innsbruck is one of Austria’s most famous cities, mostly due to sport – it has hosted two Winter Olympic Games (in 1964 and in 1976) and was one of the eight cities that was used for the Euro 2008 Football Championships that Austria co-hosted with Switzerland. Innsbruck is the fifth largest city in Austria and has a population of around 120,000 people as of January of 2013. The city is situated in the “tail” section of Austria, and is roughly the midway point between Germany and Italy. If you’re not sure what I mean about that, this map of Austria shows where Innsbruck is!

Innsbruck is in the centre of Austria's "tail"..but it's not the most western city in the running!
Innsbruck is in the centre of Austria’s “tail”.. it’s the westernmost city in the running!

Innsbruck was one of the first cities that put its name forward for the job of hosting Eurovision and has so far become a possible underdog of the race to host the competition. If Innsbruck wins the right to host Eurovision 2015, the venue they’ve decided that the show would be held in the Olympiahalle, which was built in 1963 to accommodate for the 1964 Winter Olympics, where it got its name and was been used as the arena for ice hockey and figure skating events for when they hosted the Winter Olympics. It was renovated in 2004 and is now capable of holding 10,000 people – roughly around the amount that the B&W Hallerne and the Malmö Arena could hold also. Sure, it’s not the largest arena that could be selected but it would be carrying on the “homely” feel that the Swedes created two Eurovision years ago.

The city itself is easily accessible to fans through its international airport, which is only a couple of miles away from the city centre. The airport has many destinations, with many of the airlines flying to cities such as Copenhagen, London, Moscow, Stockholm and Berlin, but you can see the entire list of destinations here. Luckily, the vicinity of Innsbruck provides for loads of great sights and activities. As the city is in the middle of the Alps, there are many skiing activities around the city, which may include going down the pistes or just going Nordic skiing…which, to be blatantly honest, is just walking with sticks in your hands! For things to see and do, the Alpenzoo is a good place to go. It’s Europe’s highest zoo and specialises in “alpine animals”…whatever they are! If you have a bit of money to spend, you could also visit the many shopping centres and bars that Innsbruck contains, as well as the local casino and blow your money…but make sure you have enough money to go around the city and buy things, as it’s one of the country’s most expensive cities..but it’s also one of the most beautiful.

So, that’s some info on Innsbruck and the Olympiahalle, but would it be the city we could see being the host next year? I wouldn’t entirely rule it out, but it may be a long shot, as other cities such as Vienna and Klagenfurt have arenas that could hold up to 30,000 people..but then again, maybe the cosiness of the last few years will continue, with the 60th Eurovision nestled in the Alps? We’ll have to see! So what are your views of Innsbruck hosting the show?

Your views:

Do you think Innsbruck would be the best possible host city?
Do you think Innsbruck would be the best possible host city?

Svetlana Andriyenko from Ukraine: I think Innsbruck is beautiful city, but is not right for Eurovision, not enough space, I think.

Svana Lístí Agnarsdóttir from Iceland: I don’t think Innsbruck will host the show next year. The Contest must be in a place for people to get to easily..and if I was to go there, I’d be taking at least three flights. I’d hope Vienna gets it though!

Ilias Kozantinos from Cyprus: My family stays many times in Innsbruck, I would love the host city of Eurovision to be there!

Oleg Bulychev from Russia:  I think it must be the capital, because of it is 60TH (!) contest it’s gonna be the coolest edition!!!

Well it seems that most fans don’t really want the Contest to take place in Innsbruck, citing it would be too small…then again, Malmö was written off by fans when Sweden was deciding where to host the Contest and it was the surprise choice. Who knows? We’ll have to see where ORF pick. So what are your views on Innsbruck? Do you think it’s a good city to host the Contest or would you want another city to host it? Feel free to tell us what you think by commenting below!

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