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Host family & history

HOSPITALITY IS IN THE FAMILY

“Cultivate that which is good and be open to the new.” Our great-grandfather Valentin Gstrein, who laid the foundation for the Hochfirst in 1934, recognised the wisdom of this balanced approach. At the Hochfirst, offering you the very best is our tradition. How? Excellent service in every respect, luxurious ambience, 3-toque gourmet cuisine at Gault&Millau standard and outstanding living comfort. As hosts in our third and fourth generation, we look forward to welcoming you!

Family portrait of the Fender host family at the Hochfirst

We are proud to continue our rich company history together with you.

Sincerely yours,
Karl Fender & Family

 

THE HISTORY OF OUR NAME

The "Hochfirst” mountain

At 3,403 meters, the "Hochfirst" mountain towers proudly at the end of the Ötztal valley where it forms the border to South Tirol.

MELANIE VON DER THANNEN ON THE HOCHFIRST

"With a lot of sensitivity, vision and passion, over the years our company has kept its finger on the pulse of times. And yet we’ve never forgotten our core values."

To the ambience

1934

How it all began.


Not so long ago, the Ötztal valley was every bit as archaic and untamed as it was when described in the famous mountain novels by Ludwig Ganghofer: Boasting rough, daring peaks that tower up into the sky with awe-inspiring rock faces that watch over scattered high Alpine pastures. According to plans by the famous architect Franz Baumann, the Hochfirst was built by hotel pioneer Valentin Gstrein in the shadow of the breathtaking mountain scenery of the Ötztal Alps in 1934.

1934 - 1950

Advertising in the olden days.


Over the years, both our hotel and advertising standards have changed. No matter the era, the comfort of our guests is always our top priority.

1951

The building of the tower.


The first expansion of the hotel was also forward-looking: The modern tower extension provided the hotel with an additional 45 beds. Hotelier Valentin Gstrein once again demonstrated his sure instincts and recorded a significant increase in guests as a result. He was always one step ahead of his time. Even back then, the Hochfirst boasted a passenger elevator - a rare luxury for hotels of that time.

1969

A new era.


In the 1960s, the first generational change took place: Valentin Gstrein's son Franz took over the Hochfirst along with his wife Hanni. With progressive foresight, Franz Gstrein extended the Hochfirst by an additional 80 beds and a grand seminar room. The new indoor swimming pool, the largest of its kind in the Ötztal valley at the time, was the talk of the town. In addition, the legendary "Rendezvous-Bar" brought glamour and prestige to Obergurgl: Stars like Udo Jürgen and Roberto Blanco performed here.

1993

Total renovations.


In 1993, Franz Gstrein handed over his life's work to his daughter Daniela and his son-in-law Karl Fender. They saw to it that the hotel was refurbished and renovated: The entire Hotel Hochfirst, including all rooms, the hotel lobby, reception and the congress rooms, were rebuilt, renovated and extended. After a construction phase lasting several months, the Hochfirst was reopened in all its glory in December of 1993.

More memorable moments

THE HOCHFIRST FROM 1998 TO 2012

1998/1999

2004/2007

2008/2009

2011/2012

1998
Karl and Daniela Fender opened the Beautyfarm on the 1st floor, which proved to be yet another innovation on the pulse of times. The seven treatment rooms served to expand the beauty and treatment offers available many times over. In addition, a further 26 guest beds were added.

1999
Only six years after the total renovations took place, the next round began with a bang: A new dining room, buffet room and wine cellar served to complete the new-look Hochfirst. The day bar and hotel lobby were moved to a different location.

2004
The "Alpen Spa” wellness area was rebuilt and extended. This more than 1,500 m² space became the ultimate venue for relaxation and featured a 220-m² indoor and outdoor pool, brine grotto, aroma steam bath, organic sauna, parlour sauna, natural waterfall and relaxation rooms.

2007
Former Chancellor Dr Alfred Gusenbauer awarded Karl Fender the title ‘Kommerzialrat’ for his commercial services to Austria.

2008
The Chamber of Commerce classified the Hochfirst as ****Superior. At the same time, the hotel standard was once again improved: In summer, the Hochfirst Superior Double Room and Royal Suites were renovated.

2009
On behalf of the Federal President, the Governor of Tirol, Dr. Günther Platter, awarded ‘Kommerzialrat’ Karl Fender the ‘Golden Order of Merit of the Republic of Austria.’ The Hotel Hochfirst also became an official partner of Porsche Germany.

The fireplace corner, winter garden & wine tasting room were also redesigned.

2011
The rooms in the category Königskogl and Residenz Suites were also completely renovated. The double rooms and suites were furnished in an exclusive yet timelessly elegant style. A passenger elevator replaced the formerly steep stairs to the ski cellar and the ski cellar itself was also modernised.

2012
The range of wellness offers was also extended: The Tirolean sauna hut was built outside, and a Swiss stone pine non-nude sauna was installed in the pool area.

2013

Major reconstruction works marked the year 2013.


 This included 35 double rooms in the Festkogl and Zirbenkogl categories as well as the Gurgl, Hochfirst and Kristall suites. The Hochfirst Lounge and the Gourmet Parlour were also added. Lastly, the hotel lobby and the winter garden were extended.

2014

The Hochfirst celebrated its 80th birthday.


On the occasion of its anniversary, the Hochfirst was awarded 5 stars by the Professional Association of the Hotel Industry of the Chamber of Commerce.

For the Fender family, however, this was no reason to rest on their laurels. New categories were created including the Seenplatte single and double rooms and the Spiegelkogl junior suites. The two luxurious Panorma Suites in the newly built 5th floor proved to be an extra-special highlight.

2016

New opening & redesign


HOCHFIRST SHOP

This small yet fine hotel shop at the Hochfirst***** foyer opened its doors during the 2016/17 season. Make yourself or your loved ones happy with exclusive gift ideas including fine schnapps from the Rochelt premium distillery, high-quality decanters from the Riedel Tirolean glassworks, teddy bears & cuddly toys from the traditional Steiff brand, fur blankets and much more. New from November 2016: Exclusive silver accessories from the world's leading brand Christofle.

GOURMET REFUGES FOR YOUR ENJOYMENT NEWLY DESIGNED

The restaurant at the Hochfirst***** with its parlours is a culinary meeting place at Gault&Millau standard. Gourmets will certainly discover a quiet, stylish place to enjoy the finer things in life at the newly designed gourmet refuges – featuring everything from a rich, invigorating breakfast buffet to the 6-course gourmet menu in the evening. The glamorous, sparkling crystal room is a true highlight.

New HOCHFIRST BAR

Insight into the newly
designed HOCHFIRST BAR.

2017

New Luxury Suites at the Hochfirst.


As of winter 2017/18, the Hochfirst***** has a new "crown": The extension of the top floor and the raising of the roof resulted in two new suites that now exceed the highest demands of a holiday residence. This forward-looking investment in quality is also reminiscent of the hotel’s early years: At the opening in 1934, the Hochfirst already featured an elegant flat roof. Today, the Sky Suite and the Penthouse Suite inspire guests with their enormous glass surfaces, which offer magnificent views of the surrounding three thousand metre peaks and the jaw-dropping landscape at the end of the valley. Inside, the modern, elegant chalet stylings invite you to relax. In addition to the two new suites, there is also a new Panorama Suite on the 5th floor.

2018

New Santé Vinotheque.


More space was needed to truly share the grandeur of our passion for a sophisticated tipple. The new Santé vinotheque has become a real gem and offers a stylish setting for wine tastings with our sommelier or for an exclusive private dinner with gourmet menu. Enjoy rarities from the world’s best wine-growing regions in an appealing ambience with precious materials and old barrel wood. Its bouquet is fully accentuated by the pinnacle of glass culture from Riedl.

2019

Awards.


Our Gourmet Parlour was awarded 3 toques by Gault&Millau in 2020.

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