A familiar, individual and environmentally conscious atmosphere: the three-star hotel on the banks of the river Main is a great location for excursions to Würzburg and Franconia’s wine country. In the rooms, works of art and designer furniture create defining accents
Hotel am Main
SPONSORED STORY Anyone who sees the large sun terrace under magnificent chestnut trees automatically asks the question: Why isn’t this a beer garden? “My father deliberately did not want that,” says hostess Dorothea von Droste. “His idea was to make the 'chestnut garden' a retreat for the guests, a place of peace and relaxation.” And that fits perfectly with the special (and very personal) charm of the three-star hotel, just a stone’s throw from the river Main.
Arty Hotel Founder
Her father, Max Weckesser, was an architect, building contractor and art collector. In 1981, he had the opportunity to buy this stunning property on the river Main and to create this small, refined hotel according to his ideas. Works by Franconian and other German artists decorate rooms and lounges and contrast with graphic drawings by architects – there is something to discover on every wall.
The restrained, yet elegant furniture does not compete with the art, but designer pieces by Le Corbusier and Charles Eames set the tone. “Sometimes my father would buy something that my mother would have liked for the living room,” Dorothea von Droste recalls with a smile, “but then they would just say: No, that’s for the hotel!” Box spring beds from FBF – a traditional company from Neustadt an der Aisch – ensure a good night’s sleep.
Selected pieces by Le Corbusier and Charles Eames set the tone
Always More Organic
In 2015, the graduate engineer took over the family hotel, where she had already worked in the background for years, now in the role of managing director. At that time, she was pregnant with her second son - something of a challenge. Four years later, the father died, and the twins Erik and Armin were born shortly before his death.
The young mother of four sons dealt intensively with the topics of ecology and sustainability, which is now also reflected in the hotel. “I don’t want to be the one on a crusade anyone,” she clarifies, “but I’d like to create inspiration in one place or another.”
A solar thermal system provides hot water, the electricity is 100 per cent eco-friendly, and efforts are constantly being done to reduce waste. “Repairing instead of throwing away” is the motto – so it is fitting that her husband Daniel is an enthusiastic technician who can repair anything.
At breakfast, she makes sure not to offer packaged portions, but to arrange organic jam in small jars at the buffet, for example. Fresh fruit salad, cakes and seasoned curd cheese with ingredients from their own garden are homemade, while cheese and sausage come from the region. “In the medium term, we’ll be switching completely to organic,” says Dorothea von Droste, “and we also offer vegan spreads.”
Appreciaton for All
On the way to becoming an organic hotel, it was important for her to sensitise the staff step by step and to get them on board from the start: “Only in this way can innovations be implemented sustainably and truly embraced by the team.” In general, the topic of appreciation is very close to Dorothea von Droste’s heart. “Both the guests and the staff should feel comfortable,” she says. And this often shows in the little things, such as when a staff member with a particular fondness for animals is happy to take care of a guest’s four-legged friend with a treat in her pocket – and both sides benefit.
“Hotel am Main” does not have a restaurant, but in the historic quarter of Veitshöchheim, a charming little town, you can enjoy good Franconian food in many restaurants within walking distance, from classic to creative. A bike ride along the banks of the river Main is a great way to convert calories into energy.
Courtyard Gardens and Modern Art
The departure point for the boats that take guests to Würzburg in a crossing that takes roughly half an hour is also very close to the hotel. On the way, the ships pass the lavishly renovated (and listed) “Kulturspeicher”, a modern museum with art from the 19th century to the present, as well as top-class temporary exhibitions, which Dorothea von Droste likes to recommend to her guests. A must-see in Würzburg is, of course, the UNESCO World Heritage Residence with its famous courtyard garden.
But Veitshöchheim itself also has a flourishing rococo gem: The court garden, laid out in the 18th century and known far beyond the region, captivates visitors not only with lavish floral splendour, but also with its 300+ sculptures by Würzburg court sculptors.
But some might prefer to make themselves comfortable in the shade of the chestnut trees on the hotel’s sun terrace. You can always enjoy deliciously brewed beverages like “Würzburger Hofbräu” and “Keiler Weißbier”, or good wines from the “Gebr. Geiger jun., Weingut” winery in Thüngersheim from the blue fridge – the tally sheet is used to keep track and settle the final bill. “This trust also means appreciation for me,” says Dorothea von Droste, “and the guests are most delighted by it.”