Hotel Edelweiss: A Spectacular Stay in Zurs, Austria

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Observing the progress of our journey on the map on my phone and gazing up towards our destination, Zürs, it was hard to fathom how our transportation would navigate the steep ascent to our hotel from the valley below. The winding path of twists, turns, and tunnels led us up and over the Flexen Pass and to our final stop in Austria. Zürs, considered one of Europe’s most prestigious skiing destinations and a favorite of Princess Diana, is home to the charming Edelweiss Hotel, where we would be staying for the next four days. The hotel, the oldest building in the small and exclusive Zürs resort in the Arlberg Region of Austria, benefits from abundant snow cover as it is the highest village in the area.

Snow cover during our visit in early March was at least 2m deep even in the village. Since 2013, the villages of Lech, Oberlech, Zeus, and Zug have been connected to the Waerth-Schrocken ski area, making Ski Arlberg the largest interconnected ski area in Austria. Upon arrival, we were greeted by hotel manager Karl ‘Charly’ Wiener and colleague Irmgard Wiener in the warm and friendly hotel bar, bustling with the weekly gathering of the Ski Club Arlberg, Austria’s oldest ski club. It was a delightful introduction to the social scene of the hotel, perfect for those looking to socialize.

The Edelweiss Hotel, nestled amidst snow-capped peaks in the breathtaking Austrian Alps, has been a haven for skiers and travelers for over a century. Recently renovated, the hotel boasts uniquely designed rooms with stylish and imaginative interiors. Each room offers a stunning mountain view, adding to its charm. Many guests we encountered were repeat visitors, a testament to the hotel’s appeal across Europe. Our suite was luxurious, with a separate dressing area, private hall, bath and shower room, spacious living and dining area, and various modern amenities. The hotel is well-prepared for families, but during our stay, it was predominantly adults, creating a serene atmosphere without noisy children.

The hotel’s culinary offerings surpassed expectations. We dined at the vegetarian restaurant, TIAN am Berg, on our first night, which is a sister restaurant to the Michelin-starred TIAN in Vienna. The innovative dishes crafted by head chef Paul Lehner impressed us, making us reluctant to try the Edelweiss Restaurant the following evening. However, the food at Edelweiss Restaurant, featuring dishes like truffle pasta, wild boar, venison, and table-side filleted sole, was equally exceptional. The sommelier guided us through the extensive wine list, enhancing our dining experience. Breakfast was delightful, with cooked options and a full buffet to fuel us for a day of skiing.

The Edelweiss Hotel is a haven for skiers, offering convenient ski tech and hire services on-site. The proximity to the slopes, just a short distance from the access gondola, chairlift, and ticket office, eliminated the need for arduous walks in ski boots. The White Ring ski circuit, spanning 22 km and passing through neighboring towns like Lech, Zürs, Zug, and Oberlech, offers a panoramic view of the area. The well-maintained pistes, efficient lifts, and varied terrain cater to skiers of all levels. Heli-skiing is an exclusive offering in Lech Zürs, making it a unique experience in Austria.

For non-skiers, the area offers ample opportunities to explore the picturesque surroundings. Transport between towns is seamless, with hop-on buses included in the ski pass. Nightlife in Zürs is more laid-back compared to neighboring towns, catering to those seeking a quieter experience. Restaurant Flexenhausl was a standout for us, with its charming ambiance and delightful food. Overall, our stay at the Edelweiss Hotel in Zürs was a memorable experience, combining luxury accommodation, exceptional dining, and world-class skiing in the stunning Austrian Alps.

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