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Auch Touristen besuchen gerne die Kirche St. Johannes Nepomuk im Landkreis Tirschenreuth, welche das Straßenbild beherrscht, Bild: German Egert

Holidays in the Upper Palatinate

Where good taste is at home – The “Hollerhöfe” – a modern hotel concept near Bayreuth

In the Upper Palatinate in the northeast of Bavaria, you can enjoy the good air, a largely unspoilt landscape and tasty fruits of nature. Elisabeth Zintl, innkeeper in Waldeck near Kemnath, for example, has dedicated herself so much to the naturally grown elderberry that it was even the inspiration for the name of her new hotel complex: The name “Hollerhöfe” is a lived concept here and shapes everyday life with overnight guests.

Nature reserve
In the Luisenburg rock labyrinth, part of the “Great Labyrinth” nature reserve near Wunsiedel in the Fichtel Mountains, Image: German Egert

“In 2005, I founded the business, which was still small at the time, which has grown over the years,” says the trained master chef and diet chef. About a year ago, she also took over her parents’ farm. Previously, Zintl was also a branch manager of a savings bank. She also gained experience in a few other professions before she dared to enter the hotelier industry. Somehow, this task is also in the blood of the convinced Upper Palatinate, after all, her ancestors were already active in this field in the 16th century.

Together with her husband Leonhard, Zintl then helped to build up Germany’s first edible wild plant park, “through which I am very happy to guide our guests and other interested parties. Of course, we also use the products from there in our kitchen,” she reveals. Leonhard is the second board member of the Waldeck local history and culture association, which is committed to the preservation of the Upper Palatinate region. Because the Zintls wanted to contribute to bringing more life back to their homeland, which was threatened by emigration, they both bought a number of houses in Waldeck in the early 2000s, according to the landlady: “These were almost all empty, we renovated them, and that’s how the Hollerhöfe gradually came into being.”

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Four buildings in need of renovation could be preserved for the townscape in this way. The extent to which the two Bavarians are connected to their region and its artisanal character is already revealed by the down-to-earth names they have assigned to the individual houses: Schusterhaus, Schreiberhaus, Kößlerhaus and the chancellery – in addition, there is the kitchen barn, for example. A small universe that they are happy to share with holidaymakers. From time to time, the couple’s three children, Lukas, Anna-Lena and Benedikt, also help out a little in the Hollerhöfe. But no one is forced to do this, emphasizes the mother, who – like her husband – believes it is important that the offspring experience their parents’ business as an opportunity, not as a constraint.

Nevertheless, it seems very likely that it will continue in the next, then already sixth, generation. After all, organic and a healthy diet are in, so the couple can hope for good reception for their lovingly furnished rooms after the Corona-related guest slump. Instead of uniform double beds with standard furniture, the Zintls rely on an individual concept. Attention was paid to both modern comfort and a homely ambience. Both together result in a very special mix. At breakfast on the terrace, the boss likes to exchange a few words personally with the holidaymakers.

The Hollerhöfe in Waldeck near Kemnath are managed by Elisabeth Zintl, Image: German Egert

Elisabeth Zintl will take the opportunity to tell you, for example, which excursion destinations are particularly worthwhile in the rural surroundings around her hotel. If you would like to be active in your free time, you can do so on the nearby “Goldsteig” quality trail, which was opened in September 2007. Hiking or cycling, both are possible here and are good for both soul and body. Nature lovers can also look forward to other, very different attractions in the “Land of Dormant Volcanoes”.

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In the area around Waldeck, for example, three nature parks guarantee an unadulterated landscape experience: the Hessenreuth Forest, the Steinwald and the southern Fichtel Mountains. Almost next door are the Max Reger town of Weiden and the idyllic district of Tirschenreuth. The Wagner city of Bayreuth is only a jump away by car, and a possible detour to the Czech Republic is also worthwhile. If you want to give your health a boost, you can also visit the corresponding facilities in Mariánské Lázně, Karlovy Vary and Františkovy Lázně. Another attraction is the Porcelain and Glass Roads.