In fact, beauty cannot be calculated. Nevertheless, it is tried again and again, for example based on the proportions of a picture or building and the golden section. The evaluation of entire cities is even more complicated. However, the analysts at Online Mortgage Advisor have tried. In a study, they determined the 25 most beautiful cities in the world, based on architecture. Vienna is also among them!
First, the researchers examined Google Street View footage of cities around the world to get images of hundreds of residential streets and about 2,400 iconic buildings. Then they calculated the proportions of all these structures to find out how closely they correspond to the golden ratio. “The higher the score, the closer a city’s buildings are, on average, to the golden ratio,” the analysts write.
One thing is already certain: If you value mathematical perfection on a sightseeing tour, you are making the best choice with Italy: Venice took first place with a value of 83.3 percent, Rome second with 82 percent. Florence came in 13th. France also has three cities in the top 25: Bordeaux, Paris and Strasbourg. Staying close to where you live is also a good option – four US cities made the list, from New York City at number five to Miami at number 22.
But Vienna also deserves a good position. After all, the former imperial residence city has produced outstanding architecture in all epochs of architecture, from magnificent imperial buildings to Art Nouveau buildings and skyscrapers.
It may also have been the mix of imperial tradition and creativity that appealed to the researchers. Two rulers in particular left their mark on Vienna: on the one hand, Empress Maria Theresa with the Baroque style that still dominates the cityscape to this day, and Emperor Franz Joseph, who had the city walls torn down in 1857 and promoted the completion of the Ringstrasse, which is why the era of historicism came about is particularly present, alongside Art Nouveau.
1. Venice, Italy // 83.3 percent
2. Rome, Italy // 82 percent
3. Barcelona, Spain // 81.9 percent
4. Prague, Czech Republic // 78.7 percent
5. New York City, United States // 77.7 percent
6. Athens, Greece // 77.5 percent
7. Budapest, Hungary // 75.9 percent
8. Vienna, Austria // 75.8 percent
9. Bordeaux, France // 75.3 percent
10. Milan, Italy // 75.1 percent
11. Stockholm, Sweden // 74.8 percent
12. Paris, France // 74.7 percent