In 1889 the Hotel Salzburger Hof consisted of at least 3 major buildings whereby the main house, the Schneider-Teuber-Häusls, was built between 1889-1891 by Dr. A. Fechter. During the same period, the Kurhaus Salzburger Hof was built by the famous Italian builder Angelo Comini and his 300 talented Italian craftsmen.
When the new railway to Bad Gastein was completed, the Hotel took on the name Hotel Bahnhof . Just 3 years later - 1906-1907 - Dr Fechter assigned the master builder M. Angelo Comini to expand and totally restyle the main building into a beautiful Art Nouveau house - resulting in the apartment Hotel Angerer. Although the later Spa Hotel Salzburger Hof was not connected, it was nevertheless a part of the work and both Hotels now formed one Hotel with more than 60 rooms, generally known under the name of the Salzburger Hof.
In just a few decades (1880-1910) the master builder Comini constructed over 100 distinguished and absolutely first class stone Hotels which turned Bad Gastein, based on its 5 star hotels in relation to its population, into the number one spa resort in the world.
Kaiserhof, Grand Hôtel de l'Europe, Straubinger, Hotel Austria, Whürers Bellevue, Hotel Astoria, Hotel Savoy, Hotel Salzburger Hof and Elisabeth Hof were all world famous destinations for the travelling society of the world at that time.
With the outbreak of the First World War the tourist business in Bad Gastein was seriously damaged. Restricted transport facilities at the beginning of the century, and Italy joining the war against Austria, all made it very difficult to run the Hotels in a profitable manner. At the end of the First World War the Hotel Salzburger Hof served as a hospital. However, in 1919 reservations at the Bad Gastein Hotels reached a record level. During the 20's many world famous guests spent time here such as Thomas Mann, Albert Einstein, Sigmund Freud, Somerset Maugham, The Roosevelts and many others. The Hotel Salzburger Hof thereby enjoyed a prosperous time during "the happy 20's".
Hotel Salzburger Hof, Anno 1925
Until the 30's, around 50% of the guests at the Hotel Salzburger Hof were from Germany. After the introduction of a German tax in 1933 of 100 Mark per person who travelled to Austria, this percentage sank from 50% down to just 2% within one year. The recovery was slow and ever since then the percentage of German guests staying overnight in Bad Gastein has never risen above 15%. At that time the Bad Gastein Lackner family ran the Hotel. Amongst their projects was the building of a sauna (the first in the Salzburger Land) together with the "treatment resort" around 1930. This first Spa Centre, or Wellness Centre, then closed down in the 50's when a new Spa Centre was built next to the Grillparzerstrasse (it's current location). Today you'll find a cosy fondue restaurant where the visionary sauna used to be.
Soon after the start of the Second World War the Hotel began to struggle with low numbers of guests and when peace came again the Hotel was used once again as a hospital. The need for recreation and rejuvenation in Bad Gastein soon returned and the time was ripe for new investments.
The 50's were a time of recovery and many Hotels extended their buildings with one or two floors. On the 18th March 1952 the Hotel Salzburger Hof received permission to build two floors on the existing building which would create another 25 rooms with spectacular views. The master builder Franzmayr was hired and designed a flat roof which could be used as a vast sun terrace with a swimming pool. Soon after that Bad Gastein hosted the Ski world Championships (1958) and there were 12,000 high class beds available in Bad Gastein.
In the 50's and 60's many famous spa guests came to Bad Gastein, such as Douglas Fairbanks jr, Tyrone Power, Bill Wilder, Shah of Iran, Lady Churchill, Richard von Wiezsäcker, Bruno Kreisky and many more.
In the 70's and 80's a period of slow decline was felt. There were hardly any investments and at the end of the 80's there was a great demand for new owners to take over.
The international educational and travel group STS (Janus ges m b H) purchased Hotel Gisela in 1987 and the Hotel Salzburger Hof in August 1989. STS immediately started a reinvestment programme which has continued up until the present time. In the 80's and 90's famous artists came such as U2 with band leader Bono, the actress Anita Ekberg, Liza Minelli, Shirley Bassey and many more. About 50 million Euros were invested in the buildings, which today comprises 150 rooms, 2 wellness resorts, 10 restaurants and bars and many more which could be named. On the 20th ‘April 1992 Princess Birgitta of Sweden performed the official opening. The Hotel Salzburger Hof had 4 sister Hotels in Bad Gastein (casually acquired): Villa Orania (2007),Hotel Gisela (1987), Hotel Post (2001) and Hotel Reineke (2011) which provided a further 25 beds.
In recent years the British actor Jude Law and US actor Nicolas Cage have visited Bad Gastein for pleasure. Even the former Pope Johannes Paul II visited Gastein many times over the last few years.
The Hotel Wildbad (built by Angelo Comini 1892) is now totally connected to the Hotel Salzburger Hof by means of a glass bridge. With the Hotel Wildbad another 32 first class rooms are included, an elegant restaurant and a separate wellness and fitness area. At the same time a brand new wellness area with about 1000m² was built in the Hotel Salzburger Hof as well as 2 new sun terraces.
Tripadvisor ranked the Hotel Salzburger Hof as number one (#1) amongst 65 hotels in Bad Gastein and it received one of the top assessments in the whole Alpine region. This success was attained in December 2012 and maintained through 2013 as well.
The Hotel Salzburger Hof and Bad Gastein now have snow canons at last and new slopes on the local mountain the Stubnerkogel which run right down to the valley. 25 years of a long struggle are final over with the inauguration in December.