Landgasthof Hirschen in Switzerland | Hangin’ With HostelBookers.
Editors Note: This is the third review in an ongoing series that will highlight each property–hostel and hotel–we stayed at during The Hazy Shade of Autumn Tour as part of our partnership with the good folks at HostelBookers.com.
Story by Randy | Photography by Beth
One of the greatest things about growing up in western Pennsylvania was living 30 minutes from one of the area’s premier ski areas, Seven Springs Resort. Sure, its highest peak is only 2530 feet and its base is mostly man-made snow, but, aside from the even-smaller Hidden Valley Ski Resort next door, it’s all we had, and you know what, it delivered.
My first time to the resort was for my eighth birthday with my mom, and I remember two things from that day: sliding down a black diamond slope on our butts and the resort’s magnificent Swiss chalet-style lodge. I expected to fall in love with skiing that day, but what I didn’t expect was falling hard for mountain-style chalets and A-Frames. Since then, I’ve stayed in a lot of cool places, including a 27-foot sailboat in San Diego Bay, but A-Frames and chalets have always eluded me, until now.
Checking into Landgasthof Hirschen was a pretty special moment for me.
Not only is it a true Swiss chalet, but the hotel/hostel is also one of the oldest buildings in town, dating back to the 16th century.
The ornate wooden building has been meticulously renovated by owners, Nicole and Jacqueline, to restore the property to its original grandeur.
(Photo below: Gina hanging at the front desk.)
Nicole and Gina, a sweet golden retriever, greeted us at the front desk. Nicole was super polite and helpful with orientation information about Matten-Interlaken in Switzerland’s Bernese Highlands. She and Jacqueline bought Landgasthof Hirschen several years ago and the whole operation is very DIY (Do It Yourself); they handle the cooking, cleaning, guest check-in, and a plethora of other things that go into running a successful international boutique-style hotel.
Walking to our room, I immediately felt that same feeling I had as a kid wandering around Seven Spring’s lodge, except Landgasthof Hirschen was much cozier. We had a private double ensuite and it was more like a hotel room than your typical hostel private room. In addition to a comfy queen-size bed, the room had a micro-fridge, flat-screen TV and large bathroom with bathtub and shower. Our room as well as the overall hotel was extremely clean.
Aside from the Landgasthof Hirschen’s fabulous free breakfast buffet, which tops the list as one of our favorites, one my favorite aspects from our stay was being able to open the window at night and hear the sheep, who wore bells around their necks, ringing in the crisp, still night from a nearby pasture.
Matten-Interlaken is a cute town and great place for day trips by train into the Bernese Alps to visit the mountain towns of Gimmelwald and Grindelwald as well as Jungfrau-Aletsch-Bietschhorn, a glaciated UNESCO World Heritage Site. And because your hotel stay includes free passes to ride the city’s well-maintained public buses, it’s easy and free to get around town and to the two main train stations: Interlaken OST (east) and Interlaken West.
The hotel offers 20 rooms, which all feature private bathrooms, wireless LAN, radio and cable TV. The rooms range from two bedroom dorm rooms ($37.28 pp) to private single ($85.21 pp). Currently, on HostelBookers our room, a private double costs $74.56 per person.
If you are looking for a more social hostel—be it partying or heavy socializing— Landgasthof Hirschen is probably not for you, since its designed more like a bed and breakfast than a traditional youth hostel. However, Beth and I found this style of lodging more refreshing because the owners are more hands on and take greater care in creating a comfortable, peaceful atmosphere.
The beautiful dining area where the huge breakfast buffet is served:
The exterior of the hotel – check out the incredibly detailed (and old) wood siding:
The street the hotel is on:
Photos from around town including the nearby sheep!
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*Please remember all photos on this website, unless otherwise noted, are copyrighted and property of Beers and Beans Travel Website, Nariko’ s Nest Weddings & Bethany Salvon. Please do not use them without my permission. If you do want to use one of them please contact me first because I do love to share and I would be flattered. Thanks!