Saturday, January 29, 2011

Princesses Stay In Castles - A Hotel Review

Schoenburg Castle - Oberwesel, Germany

Nestled high above the town of Oberwesel, Germany towers the brilliant Schoenburg Castle. It reigns over the town, as if to say, “You are royalty in these gardens!” This castle draws you in as one of the most magnificent structures along the Rhine River. It’s no wonder that dukes and duchesses have called Schoenburg home for centuries. First mentioned between 911 and 1166, Schoenburg is unique in that it is one of the few that would “fall” (or be bequeathed) to each of its immediate heirs. Which means, when the duke of the castle died all of his sons became heirs instead of only the eldest. This cultural “right of passage” aligned in such a manner that in the 14th century there are notations of over 250 people living in the castle from 24 different families. Therefore, as I arrived for my stay, I began to feel just like the princess that my grandmother always said I was meant to be.

Today, your nightly stay at Schoenburg transcends as though you are royalty retiring to one of the many estate rooms filled with rich history and seductive romanticism. From the smallest of single rooms to the large stately rooms, every detail of this experience will leave you breathless. 

As you drive across the small bridge into the castle courtyard, you can’t help but feel a sense of awe at the majestic view. Upon check in, you will gather your royal map describing the brief history of the property. The key to unlock your door is just as majestic as the castle itself. The 8” silver plated figurine is that of a soldier or knight that feels (in your hand) as though you are regally entering your room and now are actually holding a piece of this castle.

As you explore the castle take note of the details and intricacies. A small room hidden in a tower serves as a private dining area for six. The walls are darkish brown and grey stone showing their many years of wear and tear. Uncover the many balconies scattered around the grounds that offer you a different perspective of the various parts of the castle and heart-stopping views of the imposing Rhine River. 

The courtyard in the middle of the castle is the perfect resting place for a morning coffee. Undoubtedly, you will feel the morning dew and the dampness that surrounds the castle courtyard in the morning; the very same dampness that the lady of the castle may have felt in 1100. After a brief sit, enter the dining room for a daily breakfast buffet. It is included in the price of your stay. You will take pleasure in customary German cuisine such as cheese assortment, cold cut fresh meats, variety of rolls, pastries and cereals.    

During the day or just before dinner, have a quiet read in the brilliantly decorated blue and red library. The wait staff is happy to bring you beverage of choice while you enjoy the roaring fireplace and choose from a plethora of books ranging in dates and interests. 

For dinner, you will have difficult decisions to make amongst exquisite dining options such as smoked breast of duck with green apples and goat’s cream cheese or roasted saddle of venison in spiced goat cheese with cherry sabayon and au-gratin potatoes. You might be greeted with a complimentary chef special appetizer, such as cool cucumber soup or blue cheese on crostini with a dash of pepper. The dinner prices are on the high end, but it is more than worth the price to indulge your palate. I would not suggest you skip this part of the experience.

For a little adventure, take a hike along a narrow path beside the parking lot. Along this trail, the enduring gate to the gardens still stands and each column is topped with ancient castle cannon balls. Shortly after, along the path, wonder at the large black and red door; it seems to lead to a retired entrance directly under the castle. You might envision it to be a secret passage for the queen or knight of the castle. It’s hidden in the overgrown shrubbery, so look carefully. By utilizing the path in the front of the castle, you can descend down 200 yards to a beautiful oriental style garden and pond in a tranquil courtyard.

Honeymooners, you will want to experience the private honeymoon quarters. It’s a picture perfect place to begin your journey of life together with a lovely four poster bed, extensive courtyard views and a large bathing tub (perfect for two). It is separated from the main stay of the castle and therefore offers the perfect amount of seclusion.

The small house structure is the seperate honeymoon quarters.
Enjoy your time in this special place; you will not soon forget your royal stature! I think you will be happy staying at Schoenberg Castle with or without children. Be sure to take time to explore and spend time walking the grounds. This is a place of beauty and intrigue that will leave you feeling as if you just walked in the footsteps of kings and queens and the history of the walls will draw you in for sure. I hope that you will have thoughts similiar to mine as I left this place...."Princesses do stay in castles."

My assessment: 5 Star Rating

1 comment:

  1. thank you for this lovely and poetic description!!!