Spitz an der Donau - Lower Austria - Austria
A small country chateau, in the heart of Spitz an der Donau, one of the most beautiful communities in the glorious cultural landscape between Melk and Krems. This tranquil refuge truly epitomizes the romance and history of the Wachau.
The romantic hotel in Spitz an der Donau
Hotel Barock-Landhof Burkhardt lies in the center of the historical wine growing town of Spitz an der Donau, one of the most tradition rich communities in all of the Danube valley located between Melk and Krems. Today a romantic 4-star hotel in the Wachau region, this estate was once home to a wine-collection point belonging to a Bavarian abbey, and was remodeled during the Baroque era in the style of that time. Hotel Landhof Burkhardt is one of the oldest buildings in Spitz and has been owned by the same family for seven generations.
With 11 individually designed guest rooms, apartments and suites, a sun terrace with glorious panoramic views and stylishly furnished hotel spaces, the modern comforts, historical ambience and family atmosphere of a boutique hotel enter into a truly successful liaison. This small country chateau represents an authentic piece of Wachau romance and history, one which extends back to the 12th century, to which Gothic architectural details still attest to this day. In the 16th century, the estate served as both a winery and stately home, and it was during this period that it was remodeled in the style of the Baroque. And it is in this appearance that it continues to radiate to this very day, now as a 4-star hotel.
Exceptional cuisine, hiking, wine & vintners for those who appreciate the finer things
The hotel’s own fruit orchard, together with a sunbathing area bordered by rose bushes, allows you to rediscover a sense of inner harmony and peace here on the shores of the Danube. Anyone wanting to explore the Wachau region on foot will discover here at Hotel Burkhardt the ideal gateway to a magically beautiful network of hiking trails through the terraced vineyards surrounding Spitz, and to a mountain hiking path through the UNESCO World Cultural Heritage Region of the Wachau. In walking distance of the hotel, guests find cozy wine taverns, pleasant restaurants and the renowned vintners of Spitz an der Donau, certain to bring a smile to the faces of all gourmets and wine lovers alike.
The cultural landscape that is Wachau – A festival of colors and flavors
Visitors sailing through the Wachau by ship from Spitz to Krems are constantly overwhelmed by the beauty of this cultural landscape in the heart of Lower Austria. Vivid colors leave their stamp on this area in every season: The apricot blossoms bathe the Wachau in gentle pinks and whites in springtime, a lush green dominates the summer, and intensive earth tones the time of the wine harvest in early autumn. The famous apricots have long been a permanent feature of the Wachau, though they only became extensively cultivated in the first half of the last century. But wine has been growing on the terraced hillsides alongside the Danube since the time of the Celts and Romans. Here, delicate white-wine varieties find a unique climate and growing conditions not found anywhere else in Europe. This is the reason why, back in the past, the abbeys secured their wine supply by acquiring the necessary properties in the region. With their wineries – such as Landhof Burkhardt – they shaped the overall appearance of the town itself, but also of the surrounding landscapes that are so characteristic of the region, by building dry-stone terraces that go all the way back to the 12th century.
At the foot of the Tausendeimerberg – history & architecture of the hotel
Centuries ago, the first houses in the wine-growing community of Spitz an der Donau were already snuggled up against the imposing Tausendeimerberg. The history of Schlosshotel Burkhardt goes back to the 12th century. It is one of the oldest buildings of this Wachau community, attested to by its Gothic vaulting and a Romanesque archway. The area surrounding Spitz an der Donau, first chronicled as “locus Wahowa“, belonged to Niederalteich abbey. The Passau bishopric governed the land between St. Michael and Weissenkirchen near Dürnstein. Splendid wineries served as collecting points for the wine, which then made its way up the Danube to the bishoprics of Bavaria. Over time, independent wine growers and estate holders began to cultivate the artistically terraced vineyards, while others took up employment as shipping masters or merchants. As a wine collection facility for Niederalteich abbey, the estate did not only serve residential and commercial purposes, it also had a defensive role. It was flanked by massive protective walls, while arrow slits in the interior of the meters-thick natural-stone walls still provide evidence to that effect. With the growing importance of Spitz as an administrative center on the Danube during the 16th century, the house was transformed into a manor and stately home. Its now secular owners remodeled it into Baroque style and adorned it with an ornamental facade.
The representative rooms on the middle floor of the hotel have preserved their grand character to this day. In the lower rooms were the wine cellar and stables for horses, which were used to draw cargo ships loaded with wine and other products of the Wachau up the River Danube. Later, the rooms served different purposes, for example as a vinegar distillery, to produce wine and to store salt, which was then transported on the Danube and later sold in the Waldviertel. Today, this is reflected in the careers of the various owners of this property which are recorded in the house chronicle.
The estate, which is today home to this family-style hotel on the Danube, has been owned by 7 generations of this family since the year 1772. Extensive renovations were begun back in the 1950s, and in 1964 the foundation stone was laid to re-function this building as a hotel and tourism business.
Since 2000, it has been owned by Dr. Michael Burkhardt. His wife Gisela runs the business with her small team of employees, their goal being to unite authenticity and tradition with modern comforts and sustainability. And with daughter Kerstin, who is studying hotel management in Lausanne, the 8th generation is already in the starting gates.
- Wachau and wine: Unesco World Cultural Heritage Region Wachau, vineyards, wine taverns and gourmet restaurants
- Abbeys and churches: Melk, Goettweig, Dürnstein
- Castles and palaces: Dürnstein, Aggsbach, Hinterhaus, Rosenburg, Artstetten, Schallaburg
- Museums and exhibitions: Kunsthalle Krems, caricature, shipping, Wachau and Roman museum
- Theater and opera: Festspielhaus St. Pölten, Vienna State Opera
- Recreation: golf, swimming and water sports (water skiing, canoeing, rowing), Danube cruises.