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Museum in the hotel: where history and tradition meet

The eventful past of the Dolomiteshotel Weisslahnbad in Tires al Catinaccio.

Culture and entertainment in our museum

At our hotel, we understand that even in rainy weather, there are still plenty of opportunities for exploration and discovery. For those interested in culture, there are many museums to discover in the surrounding area. However, we've also taken steps to bring a piece of local history right to our guests. After extensive research, we've set up a small museum in the hotel itself, which documents the 200-year history of our bathing guesthouse and its natural spring. We're proud to share this history with our guests, and once a week, we offer a presentation that explores the past and its impact on our hotel today. The history of our guesthouse runs like a red thread through the entire hotel, creating a sense of connection and continuity that our guests appreciate.

History of our hotel with its own water spring

The "Weisslahngütl" was first mentioned in 1779 in the Urbar Meinhard II. It is said that there was already a bathing establishment at that time. It is assumed that it was built directly on the rocks at the spring, about 350 metres above the present location. Such wooden bathhouses were only equipped with the simplest tubs. The water was often heated over a wood fire in the open air, a practice that not infrequently led to accidents. The Tires baths probably fell victim to a fire around the turn of the century.

A decade later, in 1811, the mayor of the time, Johann Andrä Knollseisen, built a bathing inn on the present site, the furthest valley of Tires. It was still small and simple, built of stone. Only the rush of customers, about 100 years later, led to extensions and more comfortable equipment.

At first, the baths were mainly frequented by the local population. Bathers came to Tires from the surrounding villages, also from the nearby town and its environs. Andrä Knollseisen had also arranged for the construction of the old Tires road, so that it was not too difficult for bathers to reach the Weisslahnbad. The comfort of the house was modest, here everyone could afford a bathing stay. Especially on Sundays, wild baths enjoyed a large number of visitors. Local farmers were therefore often asked to take the bath as early as 5 o'clock in the morning and especially towards the beginning or end of the season. And those who could afford it preferred to spend a few weeks in the fresh forest air and pleasant company, combining this with a visit to soothing baths.

In addition to 13 simple rooms - probably only equipped with a wardrobe, a bed and a blanket - the Tierser Badl had a bath kitchen complete with bath kettle and several tubs, stable, barn, three vegetable gardens and a piece of meadow. The tubs were originally made of wood. They were covered with a board, over which a blanket was spread so that only the head of the bather was visible. A small jug of wine was placed on the board, as the baths often lasted several hours. The poor bathers were allowed to cook the food they had brought with them on the large communal cooker in the bath kitchen. But they had to get the wood for the fire themselves.

Tierser Bad enjoyed a good reputation as a spa and summer resort early on. As early as 1828, Ignaz Hörmann, author of the book "Die Badeanstalten des Kreises an der Etsch" (The Baths of the District on the Adige), noted: "The reputation of the baths in limb diseases, in pallor, stomach complaints, weakness of the abdomen and nervous system is great. The water was also recommended as a bathing and drinking cure for rheumatism and nerve pain, anaemia and metabolic disorders, respiratory disorders and arthritis. The wound doctor of Fiè visited the bath once a week. Nevertheless, in the course of the 19th century hardly any foreign guests came to Tires. With local visitors, around 1880, there were just 200 bathers per year.

The spa changed hands frequently in the course of the 19th century. Even the Löwenwirt Anton Villgrattner and his son of the same name appear for a short time in the long list of Tierser Badwirte. They also owned the Steger Säge at the same time. In particular times of crisis - the twenties to forties of the 19th century and after the First World War - the municipality of Tires took over the Weisslahn baths.

The owners did not always run the baths themselves, but leased them out to various bathing innkeepers. For example, from 1819 to 1823 Barbara Lorenzini ran the inn. Later it was Jacob Trotter, Jacob Figl, Anton Neulichedl and the Kräutner couple from Blumau.

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