Say goodbye to bunk beds and rosehip tea: this former youth hostel in Holzminden, Germany has been given a new lease of life as a three-star hotel. The renovation was a dream come true for the new owner, Ralf Schwager. Lindura wood flooring was used in the restaurant and the banqueting suite.
It has turned out very nicely indeed. The table tennis tables, rosehip tea, bunkbeds and washrooms are gone without a trace. Hardly anything at the Weserhotel Schwager reminds you of the former youth hostel – apart from the historic tower, which is still the distinguishing feature of this building complex. Three years ago, the opportunity to buy the old youth hostel arose. The Holzminden-based entrepreneur and department store manager Ralf Schwager knew for certain that he wanted “to retain the historic building”. And that is just what he did. A nine-month construction period saw the development of 35 cosy, modern rooms, a restaurant, a smoking lounge and two banqueting suites.
With its proximity to the Weser cycle route and the river, the hotel not only attracts sporty guests who enjoy cycling and canoeing, but it is also an excellent place for young and old alike to enjoy a relaxing holiday. In addition to comfortable single and double rooms, the hotel also offers wheelchair accessible rooms and family-friendly apartments with kitchen facilities. Featuring free Wi-Fi, large flat-screen TVs and comfortable divan beds, the rooms are relaxing havens.
Environmental protection and energy-saving technology were important factors to consider during construction. The heating and lighting is managed and controlled to save energy. In addition to a heat and electricity bus system, which uses state of the art technology, a combined heat and power plant is used for heating. Waste heat recovery pumps were installed for the ventilation system. All the lights use energy-saving LED technology. The flooring is a perfect fit for the atmosphere of the modern hotel, which prioritises sustainability. Lindura is the ideal backdrop for the restaurant and banqueting suite. Its rustic, elegant appearance contrasts with the modern furnishings.
Another aspect of the ‘old’ youth hostel has been maintained as well: Heike Sander-Nisius, who used to be the hostel warden, is now the hotel manager. Surely that must have been quite a change? “It hasn’t actually made a huge difference,” she laughs. “After all, the main thing is that the guests are happy – regardless of whether they are sleeping in a dormitory or now in a double bed in a trendy hotel room.”