The importance of being Georg

By | Category: Travel tips & opinions
George V

George V

Family businesses are notoriously fickle. One person starts and builds a business, the next generation might consolidate it or let others run it. By the time many businesses reach the third generation it fails or is sold. Not so in one hotel in Germany which has at its helm, George V and his daughter to take over one day as well.

Georg Glas, George V, succeeded his father, George IV, and his grandfather, George III, in running the family business – the Hotel Turmwirt. It was George III who decided to stop farming as his father and grandfather – George I – had been and turn the Bavarian style house dating back to 1734 into a hotel.

Today the hotel has Georg, his wife and daughter all involved in the running of the 22 bedroom hotel that increasingly caters for those interested inicycling and walking in the clear mountain area as the hotel overlooks the Ammergau Alps. Apart from one particular time. For the Passion Play in Oberammergau, the hotel gets booked up a year or so in advance. Although it is still five years away until the next one as they only occur when the year ends in a naught. So there will be a play in 2020 and 2030 and I would be prepared to bet there will be on in 2034 being the 400th anniversary of the first one.

Hotel Turmwirt

Hotel Turmwirt

At that time, Georg, his family and the hotel will probably be busy from May until at least October. Not only do people come to see the Passion Play, the locals take part in the play themselves so hoteliers can find it a doubly busy time. The 4,800 seat theatre will be full every day as will the hotels and the restaurants. This small Bavarian town will almost double in size every day.

Outside of the Passion Play, business carries on for Georg and his family as it has done for decade after decade. The winter ski appeal – Oberammergau is within the area better known to skiers as Garmisch-Partenkirchen – and the summer holiday occupation of walking and latterly cycling is what keeps George V in business. Of all the international business he receives some 25-30% is made up of people from the UK with very high repeat business from those who have stayed with him before. He remembers many and they remember him and the family.

But one day in the distant future there will be a change. George V failed to call his daughter George!

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