Salzburg’s traditional handicrafts
The old town of Salzburg is a lively meeting place; one where people live and work. Many traditional handicraft businesses have been based in the city or very close to the world-famous Getreidegasse for generations. Those who shop here walk along paths, lanes and alleyways steeped in history. Some of the businesses and coffee houses welcomed regular guests as illustrious as the prince-bishops of Salzburg, the emperor, and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart himself.
Guild signs show the way
The Getreidegasse runs through the heart of Salzburg’s old town and has been a hub of activity for craftsmen and traders since the 14th century. The historical guild membership signs are an unmistakable hallmark of the city and provide evidence of centuries of tradition. The city administrator, ‘Das Magistrat’, even levies a tax on these guild signs; referred to locally as the ‘air tax’.
Wrought iron souvenirs
One of the 30 traditional businesses in the historical part of Salzburg, Schlosserei Wieber at Getreidegasse 28, founded in 1415, is actually responsible for producing these signs. Originally the blacksmith’s forge originally belonged to the court of the archbishop. In the Middle Ages this was where the horseshoes were made; now it is the workshop used to manufacture metal bannisters, handrails, guild signs and even deer-shaped key fobs.
Craftsmanship worth seeing
The list of businesses with a long tradition of residence in the old part of the city of Salzburg includes master bakers, delicatessen traders, tanners and furriers, punch producers and a hot-dog stand, shirt makers and umbrella manufacturers, cafés and confectioners. Many of them are worth seeing for their historical value alone, as is the case with the bakery, Stiftsbäckerei St. Peter, dating back to the 12th century; or the chocolate purveyors, Holzermayr, on Alter Markt square, once the official suppliers to the imperial court; and the young Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart is also known to have spent many an hour at Cafe Tomaselli.
3,000,000 ‘Mozartkugel’ marzipan balls
Salzburg’s most famous souvenirs, the ‘Original Salzburger Mozartkugel’, are produced by a long-established business. Approximately three million of them are sold exclusively by Café Fürst and associated shops every year. In 1905 Paul Fürst was awarded a gold medal in Paris for his chocolates. They are still made by hand today using carefully selected ingredients in an elaborate process.
Perfect gifts with a historical background
Salzburg’s long-serving businesses have been providing supreme quality for several generations. Those who shop here can look forward to goods that have been popular for generations. Sporer’s recipe for orange punch was first documented in 1927. The so-called ‘Mini-Windringerl’ made by Schatz the confectioners, have been around since before Mozart’s time, and Kirchtag’s hand-made umbrellas are still treated with beeswax, as they were right at the beginning in 1903.
A spare button
One final insider tip for those with incomplete wardrobes is the veritable button empire ruled over by ‘Knopferlmayer’ at Rathausplatz 1. For over 250 years the Mayer family has ensured that no-one in Salzburg has had to do without a shirt or jacket because of a missing button. Thousands of buttons in all shapes, designs, colours, sizes and styles have been neatly sorted into boxes. If your favourite garment is missing a button, bring it with you on your next Salzburg break. Enjoy the thrill of finding exactly the button you were looking for.
Here’s a detailed list of long-standing boutiques and businesses!