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How to Book a Hotel in Berchtesgaden
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Hotels of Berchtesgaden
A hotel in Berchtesgaden is an establishment that provides lodging paid on a short-term basis. Facilities provided may range from a basic bed and storage for clothing, to luxury features like en-suite bathrooms. Larger in Berchtesgaden hotels may provide additional guest facilities such as a swimming pool, business centre, childcare, conference facilities and social function services. Hotel rooms in Berchtesgaden are usually numbered (or named in some smaller hotels and B&Bs) to allow guests to identify their room. Some Berchtesgaden hotels offer meals as part of a room and board arrangement. Hotel operations vary in size, function, and cost. Most Berchtesgaden hotels and major hospitality companies that operate hotels in Berchtesgaden have set widely accepted industry standards to classify hotel types. General categories include the following:
Upscale luxury hotels in Berchtesgaden
An upscale full service hotel facility in Berchtesgaden that offers luxury amenities, full service accommodations, on-site full service restaurant(s), and the highest level of personalized and professional service. Luxury Berchtesgaden hotels are normally classified with at least a Four Diamond or Five Diamond status or a Four or Five Star rating depending on classification standards.
Full service hotels in Berchtesgaden
Full service Berchtesgaden hotels often contain upscale full-service facilities with a large volume of full service accommodations, on-site full service restaurant(s), and a variety of on-site amenities such as swimming pools, a health club, children's activities, ballrooms, on-site conference facilities, etc.
Historic inns and boutique hotels in Berchtesgaden
Boutique hotels of Berchtesgaden are smaller independent non-branded hotels that often contain upscale facilities of varying size in unique or intimate settings with full service accommodations. Berchtesgaden boutique hotels are generally 100 rooms or less. Some historic inns and boutique hotels in Berchtesgaden may be classified as luxury hotels.
Focused or select service hotels in Berchtesgaden
Small to medium-sized hotel establishments that offer a limited amount of on-site amenities that only cater and market to a specific demographic of Berchtesgaden travelers, such as the single business traveler. Most Berchtesgaden focused or select service hotels may still offer full service accommodations but may lack leisure amenities such as an on-site restaurant or a swimming pool.
Economy and limited service hotels in Berchtesgaden
Small to medium-sized Berchtesgaden hotel establishments that offer a very limited amount of on-site amenities and often only offer basic accommodations with little to no services, these facilities normally only cater and market to a specific demographic of travelers, such as the budget-minded Berchtesgaden traveler seeking a "no frills" accommodation. Limited service Berchtesgaden hotels often lack an on-site restaurant but in return may offer a limited complimentary food and beverage amenity such as on-site continental breakfast service.
Guest houses and B&Bs in Berchtesgaden
A bed and breakfast in Berchtesgaden is a small lodging establishment that offers overnight accommodation and inclusive breakfast. Usually, Berchtesgaden bed and breakfasts are private homes or family homes offering accommodations. The typical Berchtesgaden B&B has between 4 and 11 rooms, with 6 being the average. Generally, guests are accommodated in private bedrooms with private bathrooms, or in a suite of rooms including an en suite bathroom. Some homes have private bedrooms with a bathroom which is shared with other guests. Breakfast is served in the bedroom, a dining room, or the host's kitchen. Often the owners of guest house themselves prepare the breakfast and clean the rooms.
Hostels in Berchtesgaden
Berchtesgaden hostels provide budget-oriented, sociable accommodation where guests can rent a bed, usually a bunk bed, in a dormitory and share a bathroom, lounge, and sometimes a kitchen. Rooms can be mixed or single-sex, although private rooms may also be available. Hostels are often cheaper for both the operator and occupants; many Berchtesgaden hostels have long-term residents whom they employ as desk agents or housekeeping staff in exchange for experience or discounted accommodation.
Apartment hotels, extended stay hotels in Berchtesgaden
Extended stay hotels are small to medium-sized Berchtesgaden hotels that offer longer term full service accommodations compared to a traditional hotel. Extended stay hotels may offer non-traditional pricing methods such as a weekly rate that cater towards travelers in need of short-term accommodations for an extended period of time. Similar to limited and select service hotels, on-site amenities are normally limited and most extended stay hotels in Berchtesgaden lack an on-site restaurant.
Timeshare and destination clubs in Berchtesgaden
Berchtesgaden timeshare and destination clubs are a form of property ownership also referred to as a vacation ownership involving the purchase and ownership of an individual unit of accommodation for seasonal usage during a specified period of time. Timeshare resorts in Berchtesgaden often offer amenities similar that of a Full service hotel with on-site restaurant(s), swimming pools, recreation grounds, and other leisure-oriented amenities. Destination clubs of Berchtesgaden on the other hand may offer more exclusive private accommodations such as private houses in a neighborhood-style setting.
Motels in Berchtesgaden
A Berchtesgaden motel is a small-sized low-rise lodging establishment similar to that of a limited service hotel, but with direct access to individual rooms from the car park. Common during the 1950s and 1960s, motels were often located adjacent to a major road, where they were built on inexpensive land at the edge of towns or along stretches of highways. They are still useful in less populated areas of Berchtesgaden for driving travelers, but the more populated an area becomes the more hotels fill the need. Many of Berchtesgaden motels which remain in operation have joined national franchise chains, rebranding themselves as hotels, inns or lodges.
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Berchtesgaden (German pronunciation:[ˈbɛʁçtəsˌɡaːdn̩]) is a municipality in the German Bavarian Alps. It is located in the south district of Berchtesgadener Land in Bavaria, near the border with Austria, some 30 km south of Salzburg and 180 km southeast of Munich. To the south of the city the Berchtesgaden National Park stretches along three parallel valleys.
Berchtesgaden is often associated with the Watzmann, at 2,713 m the third-highest mountain in Germany (after Zugspitze and Hochwanner), which is renowned in the rock climbing community for its Ostwand (East Face), and a deep glacial lake by the name of Königssee (5.2 km²). Another notable peak is the Kehlstein mountain (1,835 m) with its Kehlsteinhaus (Eagle's Nest), which offers spectacular views to its visitors.
Berchtesgaden's neighbouring towns are Bischofswiesen, Marktschellenberg, Ramsau and Schönau am Königssee.
The municipality counts the following villages which are (Ortsteil): Am Etzerschlößl, Anzenbach, Hintergern, Metzenleiten, Mitterbach, Oberau, Obergern, Obersalzberg, Resten, Unterau, Untersalzberg I, Untersalzberg II and Vordergern.
Berchtesgaden, Upper Bavaria (Achental), earlier Perchterscadmen, Perhtersgadem, Berchirchsgadem, Berchtoldesgadem; the word underwent a Latin distortion of Old High German parach, Romance bareca 'hay shed'. After the basic meaning was forgotten, they added a variant word of Old High German gadem ‘room, one-room hut’, implying the same meaning: ‘hay shed’. Cf. Old High German muosgadem ‘spice room’. There was a folk etymology that supported a derivation based on the legendary figure of Mrs. (Frau) Perchta, Berchta, a woman (Holle < Holda ‘well disposed, dear’) with good and bad changing features, who was venerated on Perchtertag (= Three Kings Day) and at Shrovetide was sworn to during the Perchta procession.
First ever historical note dates back to 1102 and it mentions the area because of its rich salt deposits. Much of Berchtesgaden's wealth has been derived from its salt mines, the first of which started operations in 1517. The town served as independent Fürstpropstei until the Reichsdeputationshauptschluss in 1803. During the Napoleonic wars, Berchtesgaden changed hands a few times, such as in 1805 under the Treaty of Pressburg, when the area was ceded to Austria. Salzburg was always interested in Berchtesgaden, and French troops occupied the area a short time. Berchtesgaden came under Bavarian rule in 1810 and became instantly popular with the Bavarian royal family, the House of Wittelsbach, who often visited Königssee and maintained a royal hunting residence in the former Augustine monastery (still used today by Franz, Duke of Bavaria). Nascent tourism started to evolve and a number of artists came to the area, which reportedly gave rise to "Malereck" (literally painter's corner) on the shore of Königssee in nearby Ramsau bei Berchtesgaden. The most famous author who lived in Berchtesgaden was Ludwig Ganghofer.
Berchtesgaden: Nazi era
US soldiers toast the capture of Berchtesgaden (1945)
Adolf Hitler had been vacationing in the Berchtesgaden area since the 1920s. He purchased a home in the Obersalzberg above the town on the flank of the Hoher Goll and began extensive renovations on his Berghof in the following years. As other top Nazi Party leaders such as Hermann Göring, Joseph Goebbels, and Albert Speer began to frequent the area the Party began to purchase and requisition land in the Obersalzberg.
In order to serve as an outpost of the German Reichskanzlei (Imperial Chancellery), Berchtesgaden and its environs (Stanggass) saw substantial expansion of offices, security, and support services, mainly on the Obersalzberg. Included in the town were a new railway station, with a reception area for Hitler and his guests, and an adjacent post office. The Berchtesgadener Hof Hotel, where famous visitors such as Neville Chamberlain and David Lloyd George stayed, was substantially upgraded. The Kehlsteinhaus (known as the Eagle's Nest among the Allies) atop the Kehlstein subpeak of the Hoher Goll was built as a present for Hitler's 50th birthday in 1939.
Even though a feared "National Redoubt" last stand of the Nazi Regime in the Alps failed to materialize, late in World War II the Allies launched a devastating air raid on the Berchtesgaden area. Concentrated on the Obersalzberg, the April 25, 1945 bombing did little damage to the town. On May 4 forward elements of the 7th Infantry Regiment of the 3rd Infantry Division arrived and received the town's surrender.
Berchtesgaden: Post-World War II
After the war, Obersalzberg became a military zone and most of its buildings were requisitioned by the US Army. Hotel Platterhof was rebuilt and renamed the General Walker Hotel in 1952. It served as an integral part of the US Armed Forces Recreation Centers for the duration of the Cold War and beyond. The remnants of homes of former Nazi leaders were all demolished in the early postwar years, though traces of some remained.
In 1995, 50 years after the end of World War II and five years after German reunification, the AFRC Berchtesgaden was turned over to Bavarian authorities to facilitate military spending reductions mandated within the Base Realignment and Closure program by the United States Congress and the Pentagon during the administration of US President Bill Clinton. The General Walker Hotel was demolished in 2000-01.
Berchtesgaden: Berchtesgaden today
Aerial view of Berchtesgaden
Berchtesgaden in the morning
The former Royal Castle at Berchtesgaden
The Hotel Türken which was near the Nazi buildings and was often used by the SS and then by the Generalmajor of the Police, was badly damaged in 1945. It was rebuilt in 1950 and reopened as a hotel before Christmas. Visitors can still explore the historic underground hallways and tunnels that had been used by the Nazis.
In 1972, local government reform united the then independent municipalities of Salzberg, Maria Gern and Au (consisting of Oberau and Unterau) under the administration of the town of Berchtesgaden. Another suggested reform uniting all remaining five municipalities in the Berchtesgaden valley (Bischofswiesen, Ramsau, Marktschellenberg and Schönau) failed to gain enough popular support; it passed in Berchtesgaden but failed everywhere else.
The Berchtesgaden National Park was established in 1978 and has gradually become one of Berchtesgaden's largest draws. Mass tourism is confined to a few popular spots, leaving the rest to nature-seekers. Other tourist draws are the Königssee, the salt mine, the Kehlsteinhaus, open seasonally as a restaurant and the Dokumentationszentrum Obersalzberg museum about the area's history, operated by the Munich Institut für Zeitgeschichte since 1999.
Recreational and competitive sports have grown in importance. The town's ski slope is popular. The Königssee bobsleigh, luge, and skeleton track has hosted ski-running and a number of international events and competitions. Berchtesgaden's most famous sports personality is Georg Hackl, a multiple Olympic medal winner. The city is home to the International Luge Federation (FIL).
Unlike the northern part of Berchtesgadener Land and the Salzburg area, Berchtesgaden has virtually no manufacturing industry.
Berchtesgaden Central Station is connected by the Salzburg–Berchtesgaden railway to the Rosenheim–Salzburg railway at Freilassing.
The Bavarian state government facilitated the erection of a hotel (operated by the InterContinental Hotels Group which opened in 2005). Since May 2015, the hotel has been the Kempinski Berchtesgaden.
Berchtesgaden: Notable people
Hermann von Barth
Wolfgang Bartels, (1940-2007), Olympic alpine skier bronze medalist
Karl Bartos, (born 1952), electronic musician, former electronic percussionist in the band Kraftwerk
Franz Graßl, (born 1965), ski mountaineer
Judith Graßl, (born 1968), ski mountaineer
Georg Hackl, (born 1966), first Winter Olympics competitor to win five consecutive medals with consecutively two silver and three gold medals in the men's single luge event
Kathrin Hölzl, alpine ski racer and gold medalist in the giant slalom at the 2009 World Championships
Princess Irmingard of Bavaria, Nazi resister and survivor of Oranienburg-Sachsenhausen, Flossenbürg and Dachau concentration camps
Jutta Kleinschmidt, (born 1962), German offroad automotive racing competitor
Patric Leitner, five-time winner of luge World Cup and four-time World Championship titles (in men's doubles with Alexander Resch)
Felix Loch, four-time luge gold medalist (two in singles and two in mixed team) FIL World Luge Championships
Peter Öttl, Grand Prix motorcycle road racer
Hans Plenk, Olympic bronze-medalist in the men's single luge event
Silvia Treimer, ski mountaineer
Toni Kurz, (1913–1936), German 20th century mountaineer
Hermann von Barth, (1845-1876), 19th century mountaineer
Romy Schneider, (1938–1982), German-French 20th century film actress
The Watzmann from Berchtesgaden
View of Berchtesgaden towards the Königssee
"Fortschreibung des Bevölkerungsstandes". Bayerisches Landesamt für Statistik und Datenverarbeitung (in German). June 2016.
Translated by Carl Masthay, St. Louis, 2012, from Wilhelm Sturmfels and Heinz Bischof: Unsere Ortsnamen im ABC erklärt nach Herkunft und Bedeutung, Bonn, 1961, Ferdinand Dümmlers Verlag.
The Mysterious World of Salt – Salzbergwerk Museum tourist information leaflet.
World War II: Race to Seize Berchtesgaden HistoryNet 12 June 2006
UNITED STATES ARMY IN WORLD WAR II, Special Studies, CHRONOLOGY 1941-1945  "In U.S. Seventh Army's XV Corps area, 7th Inf of 3d Div, crossing into Austria, advances through Salzburg to Berchtesgaden without opposition".