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Erde. Feuer. Wasser. Luft.

No one can escape the power and beauty of the four elements.

An austrian business family has transformed the four elements into a unique relaxation hideaway and made four houses named “fire”, “air”, “water” and “king fisher” a living experience of the highest standards. High above the wild, romantic Salza river luxury houses hang on the rock face. Standing in front of the panorama glass wall, the turquoise coloured water thunders by under our feet and entices us to dream of adventure.

In the Styrian Gesäuse, Hermann Berger, who was born into the building trade on his father’s side, has created something exceptional. He translated the forces of nature from the four elements into stylish luxury houses „Four Elements – Living by Berger“, fulfilling every heart’s desire. To escape the hectic everyday life in the big city, we booked into house „Water“ for several days. Generous and well thought out rooms, high quality materials, comfortable furniture and smart style thrill when we first enter the house. However, the absolute highlight is the tremendous natural view through the panorama window – a natural work of art that could not be captured as impressively by any painter in the world. We enjoy a glass of Champagne on the terrace and observe the play of colours in the turquoise-blue-green Salza, cutting its bed through stone 30 metres below us.

Inspired by the thundering river we relax in the whirlpool beside the panorama sauna and relish in the sensation of being surrounded by trees as part of this wonderful natural beauty. In this environment, it is easy to get rid of anything that is weighing you down and to concentrate completely on oneself. The anticipated relaxation is immediate. We go for a short walk to the bank of the Salza and observe the fish dancing in the crystal clear water.
Three of the four houses represent an element – which is reflected in the materials, the colours and the decoration, with the King Fisher house fusing all four. The King Fisher flies with FIRE in his heart through the AIR and creates an EARTH-bound retreat on the WATER. The positioning of the houses provides a high degree of private space and intimacy. Although the recommended restaurants are only a stone’s throw away, we have our delicious dinner delivered to our house, to enjoy every minute in this oasis of peace and tranquillity. My companion has made herself comfortable on the soft sofa in front of the window, while I, sitting on the terrace, lose my thoughts in the meandering river valley. In nature, the four elements are immense forces, which Hermann Berger has skilfully transformed in his FourElements into well-being of the highest standards!

Fotos: Four Elements Living by Berger

Seezeitlodge Hotel & Spa

We arrived early in the morning and as we entered the Seezeitlodge, I was drawn straight into the restaurant by the delicious smell of bread rolls, danish pastries and co. I was transported back to my childhood, my grandfather was also a baker. The roots of the founding family are reflected in the Seezeitlodge Hotel & Spa in the open bakery with its large bread oven, a conscious focus on the baker and patisserie trade and original photographs from the time frame the buffet area to the left and right. But why? The owner Kathrin Sersch is the granddaughter of the frozen pizza creator, Ernst Wagner. Therefore, the baking craft is so to speak in her blood and forms a culinary foundation stone in the Seezeitlodge.

The sense of traditional, nature and originality merges with the overall Seezeitlodge concept. It is in the heart of nature and built near to water. It is a free spirit in its own way. And at the same time grounded. Situated in an exposed location on a small wooded cape – with a proud view of the Bostal Lake in the Sankt Wendel district. Constructed between the safety of the forest and the expanse of the lake. Intertwined with regional cultural history. I want to stay here and breathe the air deeply. Inspired by the surrounding nature on the Bostal Lake, the spa resort with lodge character conveys all the advantages of a hideaway. This powerful place is integrated into the low mountain landscape of the Saar-Hunsrück natural park. Far removed from everyday life, the lodge has 84 generous rooms and 14 suites with feel-good ambiance; half of them with a lake view. All rooms are inspired by the force and tranquility of the natural environment.

Natural colours blend with accents in green and blue. Oak creates a sense of warmth. Four-poster, feel-good beds treat you to a magnificent view of the surrounding nature. The panorama perspective continues, regardless of where you are lying, sitting or standing. A further highlight is the generous SPA area, which includes an indoor and outdoor pool, fitness and application rooms for treatments or massages. A visit to the Celtic outdoor sauna village is unforgettable – with three sauna huts and a tranquillity house – positioned in lines of magnetic force. The golf course at Bostal Lake is ideally suited to followers of the «green sport».

Our creative and down-to-earth lunch snack arrives, enriching our arrival with regional specialities. The chef de cuisine – Daniel Schöfisch, does not only serve delicious dishes at lunchtime but also in the evening in the LUMI Restaurant and is devoted to regional products, such as oxen heart carrots, mushrooms, trout or blueberries picked from the surrounding forests. The herbs, which complete the dishes, grow in the bordering nature and herb gardens. Daniel Schöfisch, a native of Berlin, attaches particular importance to retaining the taste experience of all products that are used. His style of cooking is cosmopolitan with traditional roots and Mediterranean influences. His last stations – before coming to beautiful Saarland– were international hotels such as Grand Hyatt Berlin and Park Hyatt Vienna. The host couple, Kathrin and Christian Sersch’s, sense of connection to the region and their creative thinking are reflected throughout the entire hotel. Following the motto “Genuinely beautiful. Beautifully genuine” they manage a hotel that enraptures spa guests, sportspeople, connoisseurs as well as culture and nature lovers alike with a high level of innovation and attention to detail. In and around the Seezeitlodge you can switch off, take your time, forget the world and be happy

Fotos: Seezeitlodge Hotel & Spa

Getting back in touch with my inner self

The past few months have been shaped by a particularly challenging situation. Initially I felt I was locked away and could only think of getting out! Therefore, the first travel experience again should be well thought out. My only thought: headfirst into PURELife.

In my world, everything that happens always has a positive side as well. The “isolated year” inspired me to contemplate what is really important to me. And the answer is crystal clear: I am important to me. So my attractive companion and I booked into one of the PURESLeben premium houses in the beautiful Austrian Südsteiermark. Dietmar Silly and his brother Gerald have created a veritable dream hideaway. Twelve old winegrowers‘ houses were removed and lovingly reconstructed on beautiful mountainsides with a breathtaking view. Furnished with a fireplace, panorama sauna, pool and in the style of PURESLeben, the houses are the perfect location to get back in touch with oneself. No hectic distractions, but the force of breathtaking nature enticed us to take romantic strolls. Our Tablets, TV and social networks were immaterial and we instead enjoyed good conversation over a delicious dinner, which was delivered to the house. The comfortable sofa in the bay window quickly became the favourite spot and my mobile was exchanged for an exciting book. We lit the open fire, which could be seen from both the living room and the bath in the neighbouring room, every night. I found myself exploring the course natural wooden wall with my fingertips, as the look of the materials used was fascinating. Charming details and old tools as a decoration inspired me to redesign my own garden shed. Simply the sight of my loved one exchanging her stressful working life for a relaxing and pleasurable time for several days in „Stadl Wuggitz“ confirmed that it had been the right decision to start the new travel period after the pandemic in a „PURESLeben“ house. These PURESLeben houses bring you back to your own SELFat the highest level.

The south Styrian wine route is particularly enchanting during mid-season in spring and autumn. Maybe we can buy the highest level of quality on holiday, but the heart and love that the Silly brothers have put into their houses can only be found. If you love yourself, you should enjoy Pure Life!

5 reasons for PURESLeben:

  • The Silly family has managed with the premium, superbly located houses to create an unspoilt destination that is unrivalled and consistently places the guest at the heart of their focus
  • The Silly family provides service of the highest level
  • They are synonymous with quality and conduct sustainable management
  • They work with products from their own agricultural sources or acquire food from selected organic, regional partners
  • They are passionate hosts and fulfil your heart’s desire

Fotos: PURESLeben , Günter Standl, Vera Prinz

Das Gute ist so nah…

Hotel Bayerischer Hof

The pandemic has at least one positive side: we have learned to recognize and appreciate those local things in our vicinity. At the same time we are yearning to travel and experience something new.

The hurdles to enter Bavaria are falling again and Munich’s top address is looking forward to welcoming its guests from neighbouring Switzerland. Bayerischer Hof – a hotel that is synonymous with tradition and simultaneously a sustainable modern era – made use of the time and is waiting with several new features.

Hotel owner, Innegrit Volkhardt, renowned for her passion for change and innovation, has now completed the seventh construction project in Hotel Bayerischer Hof. After converting the “Garden” and “Atelier” restaurants, the Cinema Lounge and the Palaishall, she devoted herself to the restructuring of the south and north wing. Four storeys were demolished and five floors were rebuilt including a Penthouse Garden Suite. The well-known interior designer, art collector and antique trader, Axel Vervoordt, from Belgium, with whom the head of the hotel has already collaborated successfully for 10 years, again gave the hotel the perfect fitting touch: quiet and discrete, while remaining sophisticated and chic. His concepts for the rooms and suites have a comfortable and authentic effect.

The light plays with the colours of the room, minimalistic furniture and natural pigments provide a feeling of authenticity and earthiness. You feel an immense sense of calm – right in the middle of the city.

His specific way of approaching tradition and his respect for development were also apparent in Vervoordt’s subsequent project – the restructuring of the “Palais Keller” restaurant – in which he again created something extraordinary: he puts his stamp on his creations by combining the warm tradition of hospitality in Hotel Bayerischer Hof with exciting, contemporary accents.

And the subject of sustainability is also reflected in his designs – Materials such as stone and old wood have been carefully selected and integrated.

Vervoordt’s sensibility to historic structures, his efforts also being highly esteemed by famous persons such as Sting or Robert de Niro, most recently gave the “Palais Montgelas” its distinctive style. The fine and delicate choice of colours and materials provide the historic rooms with a new lustre. A perfect ambient for all festivities and celebrations that had been postponed. And talking of celebrations and culinary delights: The Guide Michelin has again just awarded the “Atelier” restaurant in Hotel Bayerischer Hof with three Michelin Stars. Chef de cuisine, Jan Hartwig, was also named “Chef of the year 2021” by the Restaurant and Hotel guide “Der Grosse Guide”.

www.bayerischerhof.de | Photos Copyrights: Daniel Schvarcz, Benjamin Monn

ADAM’s Bucket List

1 Brixen

Feel like some mountain magic? The Forestis is a retreat surrounded by nature, where we can perceive time again. The large-scale beauty, which this retreat offers anew every second, is perceptible, when looking from one of the tower suites onto the wonderful backdrop of the Dolomites. In the morning, at lunchtime or in the evening – you can become inspired among the treetops, with a glass of Sauvignon Blanc “Quarz” from Terlan and the most impressive mountain range in World heritage.

www.forestis.it

2 Buje

The San Canzian Village & Hotel is a location that captures you through its architecture, which perfectly combines country and modern, old and new furnishings, and gives the guest the opportunity to experience Istria in a completely new light. The resort does not only stand out because of the individual access to guests and the premium service of a 5-star hotel, but also in the way it fuses its unique concept, culture, modern art and locally influenced design.

www.san-canzian.hr

3 Gonnesweiler

In the middle of nature. Built near the lake. And for that very reason so joyful. A free spirit. And down-to-earth all the same. Situated at an exposed location on a small wooded cape – with a magnificent view over Lake Bostal in Sankt Wendeler Land. Constructed between the security of the forest and the expanse of the lake. Interwoven with regional, cultural history. I want to stay here.

www.seezeitlodge-bostalsee.de

4 Zurich

Stylish comfort meets elegant design. In the Sorell Hotel St. Peter a meeting place has been created under the architectural management of Andrin Schweizer, a  gem in the middle of Zurich’s inner city. Functional furnishings fuse with design and offer a generous character  of cosiness.

www.sorellhotels.com

Photos Copyrights: © Forestis, Seezeitlodge Bostalsee, Sorell Hotel St. Peter, San Canzian Village & Hotel

Glamorous Zeitgeist – AMERON Zürich

AMERON ZURICH BELLERIVE AU LAC

Ameron Zurich Bellerive au Lac brings urban lifestyle directly to lake Zurich and welcomes its first guests. Stylish and relaxed elegance and modern design blend to a fascinating experience in the four-star superior hotel directly on the lake zurich promenade.

The traditional establishment was built in the 1920s in Art déco style and is today one of the best-known hotels in the city. After extensive renovation the Bellerive au Lac now projects a new image as AMERON Zurich. Following the conversion it is still presented in the style of the Golden 20s, fused with contemporary interiors. The new “place to be” consequently creates an atmosphere that is classical and at the same time relaxed and warm. 61 rooms and suites offer guests a special level of comfort and open up a superb view of the city or the lake – combining urban lifestyle and Mediterranean flair.

Studio Bellerive is an impressive symbiosis of brasserie, grill and bar. The spectacular design, professional service and the uncomplicated cuisine create an outstanding overall experience in an informal atmosphere. The new scene location shares its name with the legendary Zurich film studio, which had its origins in 1953 in the former indoor-tennis halls of the present-day Ameron Zurich Bellerive au Lac.

Ameron Zurich Bellerive au Lac is situated in the best location on the picturesque Lake Zurich promenade and is only a few minutes’ walk from Sechseläutenplatz with the Opera House and the famous Bahnhofsstrasse. The cosmopolitan city on the Limmat has countless sights and attractions on offer and is well worth a visit at any time of the year. The hotel offers diverse event and conference areas on the first floor for special occasions – including the listed “Freddie Frinton Private Bar”. Ameron Zurich Bellerive au Lac combines distinguished history with contemporary lifestyle in an absolutely premium location.

www.ameronhotels.com

Photos Copyrights: AMARON Zürich by Althoff Hotels

The Central – Alpine. Luxury. Life.

Five stars distinguish the hotspot in Sölden, but also Tyrolean hospitality The Central – Alpine. Luxury. Life.

We Austrians know how it works!

The Central offers the guest a sparkling combination of international luxury and Tyrolean hospitality. Each room type surprises with a different style. Appreciated by James Bond and by demanding alpinists, the hotel Das Central – Alpine. Luxury. Life. is located in the heart of Tyrol, one of the highest ski areas in Austria, which also includes two glaciers. Sports fans, gourmets and connoisseurs are in good hands at the “Central”: The Ötztaler Stube was recently awarded the 3rd cap by Gault&Millau. You can also dine spectacularly at 3,048 meters above sea level in the gourmet restaurant ice Q. The “James Bond” location crowns itself among other things as the “highest hood restaurant in Austria”! If Daniel Craig had had time for this, he would probably have stayed longer to treat himself to a culinary highlight.

Sölden has shaped alpine cuisine like no other destination in the Alps.
The combination of haute cuisine and Tyrolean culinary culture has repeatedly won renowned awards for the only 3-bonnet restaurant in the Ötztal. 4 stars (91 /100 points) in the à la carte guide, 3 forks (92 points) in the Falstaff guide and above all the three toques (15 points) from Gault Millau – speak for the high quality that is offered to gourmet lovers of gourmet cuisine from all over the world in the gourmet restaurant Ötztaler Stube. The culinary delights are accompanied by over 30,000 bottles of selected wines from Austria and the world’s best wineries.

The extensive pistes extend over a total of 144 km. Skiers and snowboarders will find snow fun for all levels of ability in the multi-faceted World Cup ski area, as well as the longest downhill run in Austria at around 15 kilometres.

www.central-soelden.com

Foto ©: Das Central Sölden.

Island Oasis

In the venetian lagoon

Lush gardens, ancient courtyards, a historical church built in the 12th century- the San Clemente Palace Kempinski, previously a monastery, transports its guests on a journey through time.

The history of the San Clemente Island goes back to the 10th century to the time of the crusades. A number of pilgrims came to Venice and waited to begin the journey to the Holy Land. Today guests come to the private island to combine a city trip with a relaxing holiday, romance with culture and history with cuisine.

La Serenissima

The private island San Clemente is referred to as the gateway to the sinking city. Only ten minutes by boat from the Piazza San Marco there are extensive gardens, a church from the 12th century and five-star superior luxury. The San Clemente Palace Kempinski offers over 190 rooms and suites, packaged in a former monastery with antique relicts and the typical, Venetian flair. Mellow, classic decor and traditional high ceilings are elements of Venetian style and reminiscent of historical times. The Kempinski retreat presents its guests with a perfect combination of luxury and centuries of Italian tradition.

The Private Palazzo

The San Clemente Suite is the centrepiece of the San Clemente Palace Kempinski – a living room, a bedroom and two bathrooms for infinite possibilities. The suite is in the former monastery laundry and links historical elements such as open, dark ceiling beams with modern furnishings. Several large panorama windows provide the best possible view of Venice. It can also be extended by the adjacent Navigante suite, with 100 square metres the second largest suite in the hotel, as well as five Navigante Junior suites and the Marco Polo suite, which are also in the same part of the building. The result: a private Palazzo a Venezia that is completely independent from hotel events and still offers all the amenities of a luxury resort.

Culinary delights

The culinary delights are provided in an exquisite selection of typical Italian cuisine: modern, Venetian haute cuisine in the Acquerello, interactive atmosphere in the Insieme or relaxed dining at the pool in La Dolce. Asparagus with truffles, pasta with grilled octopus and Zuppa della Laguna, an Italian fish soup, to name but a few highlights.

Best place to be

ADAM highly recommends a drink at sunset in the hotel’s outdoor area. The breathtaking backdrop, the setting sun above the sinking city presents an almost epic image, which will stay in your memory for a long time. It is simply a privilege to be there! In short: If you want to escape the hustle and bustle of Venice, this is your location. The tourists, over 25 million a year, getting channelled through the narrow alleyways, the Piazza San Marco and over the Rialto Bridge will not disturb you here.

Photos Copyrights: Kempinski Venice

Revolution in Tourism

It is a change to fulfill an ideal: to make tourism ecologically justifiable. In her new illustrated book Bon Voyage the french journalist Clara le Fort takes us to the most beautiful sustainable hotels in the world. They promote environmental and species protection as well as school education on site.

Indonesia’s most popular travel domicile is sinking in waste. On a daily basis countless lorries tip much in excess of 1’000 tons of waste onto the Balinese garbage mountain. The waste includes PET bottles, plastic bags, sanitary towels, polystyrene packaging. Most of it comes from hotels. It is the high price of the tourist swarms, as can be seen throughout the entire world: contaminated seas, polluted beaches, dying flora and fauna surrounded by mass tourism. Some areas are suffering to such a degree from the thriving travel sector that the authorities are forced to take drastic action such as access restrictions or total bans.

Bawah Reserve

The antidote to the tourist swarms can be found in the South China Sea, where the Anambas archipelago, an Indonesian group of islands, is situated. Its water is glass clear and sapphire blue, the beaches seem to be untouched. Just a few years ago illegal dynamite fishing threatened to completely destroy the colorful underwater world of the archipelago. Now the Anambas islands are one of the first sea protection areas in Indonesia and the home of the Bawah Reserve. In collaboration with the Bawah Anambas Foundation, the luxury hotel is advocating for the preservation of biodiversity in the archipelago, educating the population with regard to the environment and is a role model for sustainability. For example, the perma-culture system is watered with waste water, there is sea-friendly sunscreen, environmentally-friendly detergent and no use of plastics. All waste is recycled, food is composted. Only electric buggies drive on land and the two boats used are solar-powered. The price for one of the Bamboo Bungalows runs to four figures, but you get something than has become difficult to find: Nature in perfect harmony.

The Bawah Reserve is one of over 50 resorts that made it into Clara le Forts’ Bon Voyage. The almost 300 page illustrated book is devoted to pioneering ecological resorts that are in the process of revolutionizing the travel branch. However, it addresses much more than solar cells and organic gardens, it is about environmental and species protection, as well as the need of the indigenous population for schools and education. According to studies, the tourism branch is responsible for eight percent of greenhouse gas emissions worldwide. And an increasing number of people are reconsidering their lifestyle, which has become unacceptable for our nature. Without doubt, it is better for the environment not to get into an airplane at all, but if you do you can soothe your conscience with gentle tourism.

Omaanda Lodge

Soft tourism can also be found in South Africa. Namibia, with its nature reserves, now ranks as one of the forerunners worldwide for nature conservation. And here, not far from the capital Windhoek, in the middle of a 9’000 hectare nature reserve the Omaanda Lodge welcomes its guests. Omaanda means rhino in Oshiwambo and is a reference to the surrounding protection area for wild animals. In conjunction with the N/a’ankusê Foundation, which was founded in 2006, the luxury lodge is developing guidelines for the protection of its sensitive ecological system and campaigns for responsible tourism.

They also care for abandoned and injured wild animals and assume the medical and social care for the indigenous people of the San. In contrast to conventional wildlife safaris, guests can visit the San and get first hand impressions of animal protection in the Shiloh Wildlife Sanctuary. In the sanctuary rhinos and elephants that have been injured by poachers can recover before they return to the nature protection area.

Le Barn Hotel

You can find out how sound sustainability works on a farm in Le Barn, in the French Fôret de Rambouillet. Between oaks, elms and silver birch, surrounded by free-range hares, horses and deer, there is a refuse of joy nestled in idyllic countryside. The estate covers 200 hectares, an area where only nature has something to say. A former mill, several barns and a sheep pen have been converted into a modern hotel for relaxation, which operates both energy efficiently and sustainably. Its guests are free to go riding, hiking, cycling, pick mushrooms and most of all to switch off. Meals are served at the long wooden table under a glass roof. The ingredients for the dishes come from their own organic garden or from local producers.

Photos Copyrights: Le Barn, Leonardo Finotti, Peter Guenzel, Cyrielle Astaing / Rigotang, Eleven Experience, Micheal Turek, Günter Standl, Roman Cho, Bon Voyage, Bawah Reserve, Omaanda Lodge

Naturparadies Finca Serena

A new resort has opened on Mallorca: Finca Serena s situated inland surrounded by rich vegetation. A location you will want to return to again and again.

We have no influence over it but wish we had. The weather is one of the most important reasons why we venture out on our travels. And Mallorca certainly fulfils this criterion. One of the reasons for the good weather on the island is its magnificent mountain regions that not only provide a protected retreat for a number of animals. The ninety kilometer long mountain range, Serra Tramuntana, keeps the vast majority of the rain clouds at bay.

The island has plenty more to offer: Fabulous bays, 180 in total. One of them is the half-moon formed Cala Murta. It can be reached through a pine forest and is another insider tip. Not to mention the Mallorcan cuisine with Spanish and Arabian influences, and the countryside that is positively bursting with abundance and entices you to linger for hours. And then there’s the Finca Serena, which opened this spring. It is situated inland, in the middle of Mallorca, on a forty hectare estate surrounded by vineyards, olive and lemon groves, cypresses and lavender fields.

Once an old finca, Pau Guardans transformed the location into a 5-star luxury hotel, where guests refuel and can indulge in the sweet pleasures of life.

The interior captivates with simple rusticality and timeless elegance. The 25 rooms were designed according to the Japanese Wabi-Sabi concept and follow Richard P. Powell’s motto: „Reduce everything to the basics, but don’t forget the poetry.“ They are completely furnished with natural materials such as cotton, linen, natural stone and wood from the area and have a view of the gardens, plantation and the Mallorcan countryside.

A number of the ingredients that the head chef Celia Martin- Nieto processes to veritable culinary delights are from these vegetable gardens and fruit plantations. Martin-Nieto relies on the gastronomical variety offered on the island for her dishes. The restaurant Jacaranda has a dining hall with ceiling- high windows and an extensive terrace, on which guests can dine under an open sky and with a view of the sumptuous countryside.

And of course the surroundings entice you to explore. Traditionally this is done by bike but there are also hiking paths. A yoga retreat, golf courses in the vicinity and an in-house spa with indoor pool, sauna and fitness area ensure that you will be revitalized after your holiday.

Photos Copyrights: Finca Serena