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HomeTravelHotelsHotel Edelweiss & Gurgl, Obergurgl: Tradition and Luxury Intertwined

Hotel Edelweiss & Gurgl, Obergurgl: Tradition and Luxury Intertwined

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© Hotel Edelweiss & Gurgl

The tranquil village of Obergurgl lies enthroned at nearly 2000 meters in the majesticÖtztal Alps, surrounded by 21 snow-covered three-thousand-meter peaks. For ski connoisseurs the resort is a winter wonderland, offering guaranteed snow from mid-November to the end of April (thanks to the altitude), 112 kilometers of perfectly groomed slopes with runs of varying degrees of difficulty, and 25 state-of-the-art ski lifts. There are 14 varied freeride slopes for adrenaline junkies and plenty of back country skiing. Nicknamed ‘Diamond of the Alps’, the resort is a stunning traditional Austrian mountain village, with an abundance of things to do besides skiing, making it the perfect destination for a luxury holiday in the mountains all year round.

Hotel

The Edelweiss & Gurgl has a proud and illustrious history. Built over 130 years ago by Martin Scheiber, in 1889, it is a fourth-generation family-run hotel (Lukas Sheiber is the current owner). It is the oldest hotel in Obergurgl – the resort’s original village inn – and has served as a meeting point for guests and locals thanks to its unrivalled location in the heart of the village, a mere 15 steps (or escalator ride) to the Hohe Mut Bahn gondola. I first stayed in the hotel as a child, and it is always a pleasure to revisit a place that holds fond memories. I was eager to see how it had changed in the two decades since my last visit. Superficially, I found it almost unrecognisable: the hotel took advantage of the lull in global tourism during the Covid pandemic, and underwent a full facelift during the winter of 2020. All the rooms and suites were enhanced, the spa area was redesigned, and a swish new fitness club was installed, along with a new lobby and bar area. The major renovation refreshed the hotel, and the facilities have undergone a huge upgrade, but the warm atmosphere, friendliness and attentiveness of the staff, and attention to detail that I recalled from childhood were very much unchanged.

We arrived at the hotel after a smooth flight from London and an efficient transfer from Innsbruck Airport. Upon arrival, we received a warm Tyrolean welcome from the friendly staff at reception, and a lederhosen-clad bellman whisked our luggage off to our rooms.

Rooms

Following the hotel’s major renovation project in 2020, all the 132 spacious rooms and suites have been totally modernized and exude an alpine freshness and coziness that is so comforting after a day on the slopes. 

There is a wide array of room and suite categories to choose from, at various price points. We stayed in an Edelweiss Suite (available from €224 per person, per night), which was ideal for our family of four. The generously proportioned, bright suite spans around 42m2 and the living area and bedroom area are bisected by a pair of sliding doors, which makes it easy to partition the suite into two ‘bedrooms’ at night-time.

The furnishings and fittings throughout are of excellent quality and taste. There is a spacious walk-in shower, separate WC, and plenty of wardrobe space (essential for ski gear!) as well as a safe for locking away valuables – plus a huge marble vanity comprising two washbasins and plenty of room to spread out our collective assortment of toiletries.

A highlight of this particular suite type is the dual balconies – one accessible from the bedroom and the other from the living room. Both afford guests panoramic vistas over the snowy peaks and soak up the spring sunshine. I made it a morning ritual to make myself a coffee using the state-of-the-art in-room espresso machine and sit out on the east-facing balcony and drink in the fresh mountain air and sensational views. I must say, it was a blissful start to the day, and one I quickly found myself looking forward to.

What sets luxury hotels apart is the little extra touches, so after a long day’s travel, on the first evening it was a pleasure to find an array of tasty chocolate treats awaiting us on arrival, as well as complimentary bottles of sparkling and still water.

The plush terry cloth robes and slippers (which were provided in mini sizes for the children) and opulent White Company unguents, made returning to our room after dinner feel like quite the treat, and we all slept soundly in the peaceful surroundings on the supremely comfortable beds.

Food

There are two restaurant options within the hotel: the multi-award winning À La Carte

Restaurant and the gorgeous, glass-domed Fondue room. In addition, guests may choose to venture outside the hotel to the Zirben Alm, a traditional alpine hut in the heart of a pine forest above Obergurgl. The A La Carte restaurant menu is based around seasonal and fresh ingredients – many of which are sourced from the local valet or indeed from the hotel’s own farm and dairy. The classic yet innovative menu of mouth-watering cuisine is served in light, elegant, wood-paneled surroundings decked out with plush banquettes and tasteful furnishings to create a cozy yet sophisticated dining setting. There is a comfy bar/lounge area for pre-dinner drinks, which is an elegant setting in which to relax and unwind before supper. The lounge is all soft lighting and traditional natural materials such as wood and stones, with delightful detailing (the lines carved into the wooden paneling reflecting the topography of the theÖztal Alps) and is the perfect environment for a little aperitif.

We enjoyed a quick glass of wine before being ushered to our table in the oak-paneled dining room. There is a four-course menu every night, with a salad buffet to start with. All dishes feature the finest, freshest ingredients of the season, and much of the produce is sourced locally – fish is often from the riverÖztaler Ache, for instance. Every night brought a proliferation of fresh and contemporary flavors. The ever-changing nature of the menu means that every night there were different, enticing options on offer.

Breakfast, served daily in theÀLa Carte Restaurant, is a smorgasbord of delights: local artisan breads, a giant honeycomb, cooked breakfast, and a vast array of yoghurts, cereals, fruit and cold cuts of meat and cheese: the perfect assortment to set everyone up for a good day on the slopes.

Overall, the food was a huge highlight of our stay, and the dining team clearly put a great deal of care and attention into devising the menu and dishes. The waiting staff were, without exception, solicitous and very eager to please: no request was too much.

Spa

The luxurious 1,200m² Glacier Spa comprises a spa and beauty area offering the perfect opportunity to retire away from the main hotel and enjoy a moment of calm. The adults only area is an oasis of tranquillity, and is home to a selection of saunas in (including Finnish, Swedish, and Infrared) a spacious steam room, bubbling whirlpool, and Kneipp wading pools.

The Spa offers a comprehensive menu of sumptuous therapeutic treatments to choose from, each based around the nourishing Kurland product range and delivered by one of its excellent team of specialist therapists.

The chillout room is one of the best of its kind that I’ve visited. Lying on a day bed enveloped in a furry throw, contemplating the flickering flames of the open fireplace in the middle of the chillout room, I felt completely cossetted and calm.

To do

The hotel boasts two generous-sized heated pools – one indoor and one outdoor. My children absolutely loved being able to swim outside amidst the mountain views in the steaming pool; the experience was incredibly atmospheric.

As part of the 2020 modernization, the hotel built a brand new E&G gym, which is replete with state-of-the-art Technogym cardio and strength training equipment as well as free weights. It is unusually light and large for a hotel fitness facility and has a spacious area for yoga, pilates, and stretching. 

There is a well-equipped Edelweiss Kids’ Club, which is open from 3-10 pm. The hotel offers an early children’s tea, and it is possible to drop kids in the club after they’ve eaten, which we did on a couple of occasions to enjoy a peaceful meal à deux.

One of the highlights of our stay was watching the magic show, organised by the hotel, which was totally captivating for children and adults alike (and especially impressive as the magician toggled seamlessly between English and German throughout the show for his international audience). 

In winter, most guests come here to ski, and the hotel could not be better located for access to the slopes. Each hotel room has a corresponding, key card-controlled boot locker with heated boot holders. Scheiber Sport, which offers superb ski hire, is located adjacent to the boot room.

During the summer months, hiking and biking are perennially popular, and there is an abundance of local trails for outdoor enthusiasts.

Getting there

The hotel is a 90-minute drive from Innsbruck Airport, and the hotel can provide taxi transportation to and from the airport for €485 for a round trip.

In a nutshell

The epitome of a quintessential Alpine hotel set in the heart of picturesque and snow-sure Obergurgl, the Hotel Edelweiss & Gurgl is the perfect option for those looking for a fabulous skiing holiday in comfort and luxury. Expect to feel like a cherished guest and be extremely well looked after at this fourth-generation family run establishment – and be sure to pop in and experience the hotel’s Glacier Spa after a hard day on the slopes, which is certain to be the highlight of your stay.

Fact box

Address: Ramolweg 5, 6456 Obergurgl, Austria

Phone: +43 5256 6223

Website: edelweiss-gurgl.com

© Hotel Edelweiss & Gurgl

© Hotel Edelweiss & Gurgl

© Hotel Edelweiss & Gurgl

© Hotel Edelweiss & Gurgl



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