Castle Schloss Hohenstein

The Schloss Hohenstein, a secret castle-hotel in the Bavaria-Thuringia region of Germany

Schloss Hohenstein in Coburg, Germany
Schloss Hohenstein in Coburg, Germany
High in the hills above Coburg, several miles from the village of Haarth, and down a country lane twisting through farmland, lies the 16th-century Hohenstein.

The castle

The gravel drive curls around to a wide stone staircase and the ivy-covered guard tower’s gargantuan front door. A friendly black-and-white cat named Shushie greets most arrivals and follows whoever pays her the most attention back to their room to try to cadge a spot on the bed for the night.

Past the guard tower lies a courtyard that’s a study in all the different types of German castle architecture, a mélange of half-timbered walls, craggy medieval towers, wrought-iron lamps, flying stone staircases, gutter spouts sculpted into dragon's heads, and fancy baroque stonework.

The only eyesore spoiling the antique mood is the modern glassed-in porch of the restaurant, popular with locals for special occasions, where the hotel’s managers and chefs, Michael Kötterl and Stefan Wandt, prepare excellent, high-test gourmet German cuisine.

The rooms

The 13 guest rooms are scattered throughout the complex, and each is unique. Some are paneled with wood on the floors, walls, and ceilings; others are carpeted with plastered arches around big bay windows. A few, including the Lichtenstein Suite, are riots of gilded rococo stucco work and crystal chandeliers. A favorite is the "Freiherrnzimmer," a sizeable chamber with a high wood-beamed ceiling, plank floors, and gorgeous 17th-century windows set with painted glass medallions.

The grounds

The extensive wooded grounds were laid out in the 18th and 19th centuries in a Romantic style, and are littered with mossy low ramparts, tumbledown outbuildings, lichen-spotted statues, and squat towers from older fortifications laced with exterior spiral steps.

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This article was by Reid Bramblett and last updated in July 2014.
All information was accurate at the time.

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Copyright © 1998–2013 by Reid Bramblett. Author: Reid Bramblett.