Elisabeth Gürtler studied economics at the Vienna University of Economics and Business. She is a keen rider and in 1979 was Austrian vice-champion in dressage. In 1990 she took over the management of Hotel Sacher in Vienna, Hotel Sacher in Salzburg, as well as Sachertorten AG and several holdings. From 1999 to 2007 she organized the Vienna Opera Ball and was rewarded for this with the Grand Decoration of Honour in Gold for Services to the Province of Vienna. In 2007 she took on the joint directorship of the Spanish Riding School with Erwin Klissenbauer. Since 2010 she has organized the annual summer ball Fête Impériale there.