Famed for its opera, sachertorte and coffee houses, Vienna has retained its number one position as the best city in the world to live in Mercer's annual survey.
Mercer has just released it's annual "Quality of Living Worldwide City Rankings Survey." The index it produces is designed to help multinational companies adequately remunerate employees when sending them abroad.
European cities dominate with 15 of this years top 25 top cities. Two of the top cities, Geneva and Zurich, were also ranked the most expensive cities to live in Mercer's 2012 Cost of Living rankings. Vienna, ranked as the best city to live in, is the 48th most expensive city.
Three Canadian cities, Vancouver, Ottawa and Toronto, are ranked in the top 15 cities to live, while the highest ranking U.S. city is Honolulu at number 28. The UAE's Dubai and Abu Dhabi are the highest ranked cities in the Middle East at numbers 73 and 78 respectively. Baghdad retains its position at the very bottom of the index, ranked as the worst city to live.
Proto Thema reported Athens is ranked as the worst city in Europe to live. Mercer's Chief Executive Mercer, Slagkin Parakatil, said: "Overall, European cities continue to have a high quality of life as a result of the combination of increased stability, rising living standards and improved infrastructure of the cities. But the economic crisis, political tensions and high unemployment in some European countries continue to be a problem for the region."
The Mercer report confirms the expressed opinion of Ioannis Michaletos, who in a report for Balkan Analysis said: "Athens has become arguably the worst city in the European Union" due to the surging crime rate.