A Comfortable Bavarian Gasthaus at Hotel Zur Post in Altötting
The Hotel Zur Post in Altötting is a large and comfortable 4 star Gasthof hotel that is perfectly located on the main town square of Altötting, right opposite the shrine of the Chapel of Mercy for which the town is famous. With 60 rooms, I imagine that this must be one of the largest hotels in Altötting and there are many different public rooms and eating areas to accommodate groups of different sizes, although the overall impression is comfortable and homely.
A gasthaus has been on this site since the 13th century although the current building dates back to the 17th century when it was redesigned after a fire, in Italian baroque style, by the same architect who designed the Nymphenburg castle in Munich. We enjoyed our 2 night stay at Hotel Zur Post in Altötting as part of a short break to visit the Oberammergau Passion Play and the hotel would be an ideal place to stop for a night or two if you were touring Bavaria and wanted to visit the attractive pilgrimage town of Altötting.
Restaurants and public areas
For sitting out in fine summer weather, there is a bar terrace at the front of the hotel for drinks and light meals, adjoining the grass and gravelled Kapellplatz square, where you can watch the world go by. If you want to eat al fresco with a little more privacy there is another courtyard restaurant terrace at the back of the hotel as well as a large dining room, an even larger function room complete with stage and several other dining rooms which could accommodate larger groups like our tour party. Facing the side street façade of the hotel is a shop selling clothes and accessories in traditional style including the pretty Bavarian dirndl dresses that are typically worn by hotel staff and by locals on special occasions.
On the same side, facing the street is the Bistro Gabriel delicatessen and coffee bar where you can buy local speciality produce and eat a plate of cold meats and salads or drink an expresso or glass of wine. We ate our breakfast and evening meal in an internal dining room with pretty red checked clothes and furnishings, hunting trophies on the wall and a tiled stove in the centre. It was very cosy and attractive room and perfect for a chilly winter’s evening although a little dark in the summer, so we ate in the main Post Speisesaal restaurant on the second night. Judging by the large reception room and the photos of the winter ball held there, this is a hotel that regularly hosts weddings and celebration parties although the overall feel of the hotel was of a traditional and family run establishment with many personal touches.
Bedroom and bathroom
Our room was on the first floor accessed from a wide corridor with antique pictures and furniture. The good sized bedroom had a slightly old fashioned feel with dark wood fitted bedroom furniture, headboard and side tables. There was a pretty glass chandelier and on the walls were a crucifix and some traditional prints, photos of porcelain ornaments and an oil painting of a floral arrangement – the sort of pictures that I’d expect to find in my granny’s house but wouldn’t be giving wall-space in my own (apart from the crucifix being a good Catholic girl).
The duvet covers and square continental pillows had white self-striped cotton covers and the bed was extremely comfortable. As seems to be common in European hotels, the double bed was made of twin mattresses placed side by side, and whether you ask for a double or twin beds, you usually get the same arrangement. There was a dark blue carpet, green patterned unlined curtains and a small table with a couple of red seated wooden chairs, as well as a fridge and large (as in bulky, not flat-screen) TV. Our bedroom had French windows which led up a couple of steps to a small balcony adjoining an internal roof terrace with plant pots and a small fountain which could be accessed from one of the upstairs reception rooms in summer. The overall effect of the bedroom was clean, fresh and comfortable if a little dated in décor.
The en suite bathroom was also freshly decorated in a modern white and grey theme. The sink had a grey mottled granite surround that was echoed in the black and white speckled floor tiles, with a large inset mirror above and a wired in hair-dryer. There was a deep bath with a powerful shower and a glass shower screen and the plain white tiles were edged in a grey and silver patterned border. At the side of the sink were the typical small bottles of shampoo, body lotion and soaps in a glass jar. The whole bathroom felt clean, fresh and modern and efficiently Germanic.
We didn’t have a lot of contact with the staff but the waiting and reception staff we met were friendly and professional and some spoke a little English. Having met so many Germans on my travels who speak excellent English I was surprised that many locals working in shops and cafes spoke limited English (although better than my German), so this is the perfect place to pack your phrase book and try and brush up on your German. We were able to pick up some tourism leaflets about the town from reception and the helpful receptionist gave us directions to the bike shop in town, where we hired bikes for our afternoon cycle ride to the Badesee.
Breakfast and evening meal
For breakfast our group was served in a separate room with a buffet selection of muesli style cereals, fresh rolls with jam and butter, the typical German spread of cold meats, cheese and boiled eggs and juices, and all the food was good quality. As we were part of a tour group, our evening meal was from a set menu that was included with our tour cost, and normally consisted of a home-made soup starter, a meat, fish and vegetarian option of typical Bavarian food specialities and a desert. The food was generally good although the vegetarian options were a little insubstantial for a main course – for instance my husband had a mozzarella salad that would have made a light lunch choice and left him feeling hungry. When you’re eating from a set menu that has been put together with cost in mind, it’s difficult to judge the best of what’s on offer, but I’d certainly be very happy to eat in the Hotel Zur Post restaurant again for a range of European and Bavarian dishes
I’d spotted on the hotel website that Hotel Zur Post at Altötting had a small swimming pool and sauna and had packed my costume in anticipation of a trying it out. In the event we did get some swimming in the badesee (swimming lake) nearby but the early starts meant that we didn’t get the time to try out the pool, although others in our group did and enjoyed their swim. I don’t expect that most of the pilgrims coming to Altötting are as wedded to their laptops as me, but there was free WiFi available from the café that I could also pick up in our bedroom and I also borrowed a cable at reception to access internet in the room. I didn’t see any parking facilities at the hotel and none are mentioned on the website, so if you are travelling by car, I would enquire about this when you book.
As I stayed in the Hotel Zur Post at Altötting as part of a tour package, I can’t tell you the exact price that we would have paid for the room we stayed in and the meals we ate. However, the price of a double room, in the main building where we stayed, as published on the hotel’s website is €105-129. There do appear to be cheaper rooms at €88 available in the Gasthouse part of the hotel although I’m not sure where these are located.
I’d recommend the Hotel Gasthof Zur Post in Altötting as a great choice to stay if you’re visiting this part of Bavaria. The Hotel is traditionally and comfortably decorated, with pretty details throughout and while it’s a big hotel it is family run and seems to have a personal touch for its guests.
Hotel Zur Post Altötting, Kapellplatz 2, 84503 Altötting, Germany
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