Did you know that our current family & wellness hotel was offering visitors a cosy place to stop off for refreshment as far back as the 1920s? Back then, it was a small farming operation and restaurant that went by the name of “Auweberhäusl”. Today’s Galtenberg Family & Wellness Resort has been writing its exciting history ever since.
The farmhouse was demolished in 1928 and the Galtenberg guesthouse was built.
Extensions were added in 1933-34 with a larger kitchen, guest rooms and a number of bedroom suites.
Even back then, the Galtenberg guesthouse was a popular meeting point in both summer and winter. The amazing mountain landscape with its many hiking paths and the warm hospitality were famous even outside of the Alpbach region and it was a popular destination for summer holidays. Even back then, the location was already impressing visitors with its own ski lift right next to the building, proving a massive hit with skiers on their winter holidays. The Galtenberg guesthouse was already proving to be a strong innovator and pioneer in many areas. For example, the guesthouse boasted the only central heating far and wide and each of its 25 double rooms was equipped with running hot and cold water.
Two of the three floors had communal showers and there was only one guestroom in the entire guesthouse with a fully equipped bathroom. At the time, this was the best suite in the house. Back then, the “post bus” was an important means of public transport and linked the Alpbach Valley to the important Jenbach and Brixlegg railway stations. The post buses used to turn around right in front of the Galtenberg guesthouse. As a result, the Galtenberg guesthouse also had a post office with mailbox as well as what was then the first public telephone in the building. The mailbox still exists today and is emptied every weekday by Austria Post.
A double garage for cars was added in 1950. At the same time, arrangements were made to potentially add additional floors to this extension in future.
A significant extension and renovation of the Galtenberg guesthouse took place in 1960. The cellar and the ground floor were extended. The top floor was also optimised and equipped with dormer windows on both sides, a typical feature of the era.
The Galtenberg ski lift, which still exists today, was constructed in 1962 on the initiative of ski lift pioneer Andreas Mayer together with the involvement of the Galtenberg guesthouse. At the time, the lift was operated by a diesel engine and this continued until 2008. The route, the valley station and all of the lift supports along the route are still in place and in top condition. However, the technical facilities have naturally been brought up to the state-of-the-art in the meantime.
In 1965, two floors for employee accommodation were added onto the vehicle garage.
In the summer of 1974, after the Galtenberg guesthouse had been closed for almost 4 years, Ferdinand and Gertrude Kostner took over the Galtenberg guesthouse as leaseholders. As part of the leasing agreement, an option to purchase the guesthouse at a fixed price after one year of the lease had been agreed. All of the extended family and many local Alpbach residents helped to get the Galtenberg guesthouse back into shape after its long period of closure and it was put back into operation in the autumn of 1974. October 1974 was marked by the birth of son Frank.
In 1975, Ferdinand Kostner took up the option to purchase the Galtenberg guesthouse.
The restaurant was completely renovated in 1978 and became a country-style restaurant with a seating capacity of 50 guests. The recovered wood used in the construction came from a dilapidated 300-year-old farm from South Tyrol. Some of the recovered wood used for the restaurant can still be found in the new Galtenberg Resort.
The Galtenberg guesthouse first established itself as an outstanding restaurant with overnight accommodation. However, at the beginning of the 1980s the rooms were getting a bit long in the tooth and the owners started to think about how they would develop the business. It was obvious that rooms with just a hand basin and communal shower would no longer be acceptable to guests. Up until a final decision was made, the owners concentrated on the restaurant business and the rooms were mainly hired out to youth groups in the winter.
In 1985, Ferdinand Kostner decided to consider various options together with his tourism consultants.
In 1987, the decision was made to almost completely demolish the Galtenberg guesthouse and construct a 3-star hotel with 28 modern guestrooms. The country-style restaurant built in 1978 was retained as part of the complete overhaul. Construction started in April 1987.
After the opening of the new 3-star Hotel Galtenberg with shower and WC in every room, the owners soon realised that the business needed a wellness facility.
An extension with a further 12 rooms was built in 1991, including a wellness area which would be considered very small by today’s standards.
Son Frank Kostner joined the business in 1994 and provided his parents with energetic support.
The “umbrella six” après-ski bar was opened in 1998 at the valley station of the Galtenberg ski lift.
The “Farmer Pub” opened in the town centre of Alpbach in 1999. The pub operated until 2007 and is today a sporting goods business.
In 2004, the owners had the opportunity to purchase the plot of land needed to extend the business. A decision was made to create something special for families with children.
The business was completely renovated and expanded in 2005. The first stage of today’s Galtenberg Resort came into being. The Galtenberg Children’s Hotel was born: With a kid’s club, playgrounds, pool and wellness areas as well as new, modern family suites, the Kostner family made the leap towards becoming one of the best, most beautiful and most modern hotels for children and families in Austria. With major renovation work, a lot of commitment and attention to detail, the then Galtenberg Children’s Hotel was rewarded with a 4-star and 4-smiley rating.
The employee accommodation building was built in 2012.
Further new attractions were added to the popular family hotel in 2015, which is always adding to its guest offerings – and always with careful consideration of the needs of its guests. This allowed the Kostner family and team to gain the “Superior” rating.
The new suites built in 2015 and the incredible new wellness area on the 7th and 8th floors of the new building are particularly impressive. Today’s 4*S Galtenberg Family & Wellness Resort has created a standard that is unrivalled in the sector and is equally appealing to families with children, couples, skiers and wellness holidaymakers. With ski pistes directly by the hotel, a wellness and restaurant area for adults only, a softplay facility for children (the largest hotel softplay facility in Austria), a family spa with giant tyre slide, an e-Trial-Park and top-class gastronomy, this hotel in Tyrol offers everything the heart could desire.
In 2018, in spring, after a long period of neighbourliness and cooperation with the Wiedersbergerhorn Hotel, the final merger of the businesses took place. The further plan is to connect the hotels in terms of construction and the Wiedersbergerhorn is to be quickly renewed and improved.
In 2018, in autumn, the plots of land necessary for the connection of the two houses Galtenberg and Wiedersbergerhorn were fixed.
In 2019, Construction work for the underground connection between Wiedersbergerhorn and Galtenberg started at the beginning of September. In the first step, an attractive connecting passage with double lift was created – completion in time for the start of the winter season in December 2019.
In 2020, After we had to close our operations on 15.03.2020 due to the worldwide Corona pandemic, a stop of the projects was also considered for a short time, but only for a very short time! We decided to continue all projects as planned despite the Corona crisis and to look optimistically into the future.
From April to December 2020, a new central reception including lobby, a new hotel bar (alPACHA Cocktail – Bar – Lounge), a microbowling facility, a buffet and restaurant extension were built. All technical prerequisites for future projects and challenges were also created. The background areas, which are important for the overall operation, were optimised and brought up to the state of the art in order to be able to optimally use synergies and processes.
The former Hotel Wiedersbergerhorn was also heavily invested in and modernised. In addition to the new rooms and suites, a Tyrolean inn experience restaurant with seminar and multifunctional room was created. Connys Original Tiroler Wirtshaus is an a la carte restaurant with original Tyrolean parlours and exudes authentic modern Tyrolean flair (www.connys.com). We have also invested in a contemporary “crew restaurant” with an innovative buffet and catering concept for our employees.
In 2022, After the successful relaunch at the end of the Corona Pandemic, we were able to continue our investment programme. In spring, the entire restaurant terrace was renewed and additionally equipped with modern awnings for shading. Just a few months later and with only 5 weeks of windows, we renewed 24 suites from K5-K9 as well as a large part of our restaurant area. Thus, not only the suites but also the entire restaurant area are up to date.
The future remains more exciting and we still have a lot planned. The planning for our next mega project is in full swing! We are looking forward to our many loyal guests and also to the new guests we may enchant at the Galtenberg Resort.