When Ludwig von Staufen starts work on the construction of Staufeneck castle in 1080, he creates a family seat that will remain in the Hohenstaufen dynasty for 250 years. From 1333 until its decline, the noble family Rechberg-Staufeneck owns the castle. From 1599 onwards the lords of the castle change frequently through sale or marriage. A period of decline begins in 1800; by 1844 the castle is no longer inhabitable and large parts of it must be demolished.
In 1926, the 27-metre high castle keep is finally reopened to the public. In 1927, Hildegard Wörner boldly opens an inn in the western part of the ruined castle. Hildegard’s daughter Lore and her husband Erich Straubinger take over the inn in 1973 and bring the castle complex back to life. With their entrepreneurial skills and hard work, the inn becomes an upscale restaurant with a banquet hall.
In 1990, married couple Erich and Lore Straubinger purchase the restaurant and the castle ruins from the municipality of Böblingen. Their son Ralf becomes the chef at Burg Staufeneck. Their daughter Karin marries her childhood sweetheart Klaus Schurr, who commits himself wholeheartedly to the development of the family-run company.
In 2000, the two young entrepreneurial families buy the entire castle complex and the planned hotel construction can begin. Site-managed by Klaus Schurr, the project is completed in just one year. The opening ceremony is in December 2002. Just one year later, the hotel is awarded five stars by the German Hotel and Restaurant Association DEHOGA.
The Straubinger and Schurr families assume all responsibilities for the complex and for the management of the hotel, restaurant and catering service. Since then, Burg Staufeneck has consistently been included among the best 30 hotels on the latest hotel and restaurant lists in Germany.References:
The Cloth Hall in Kraków dates to the Renaissance and is one of the city's most recognizable icons. It is the central feature of the main market square in the Kraków Old Town (listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1978).
The hall was once a major centre of international trade. Traveling merchants met there to discuss business and to barter. During its golden age in the 15th century, the hall was the source of a variety of exotic imports from the east – spices, silk, leather and wax – while Kraków itself exported textiles, lead, and salt from the Wieliczka Salt Mine.
Kraków was Poland's capital city and was among the largest cities in Europe already from before the time of the Renaissance. However, its decline started with the move of the capital to Warsaw in the very end of the 16th century. The city's decline was hastened by wars and politics leading to the Partitions of Poland at the end of the 18th century. By the time of the architectural restoration proposed for the cloth hall in 1870 under Austrian rule, much of the historic city center was decrepit. A change in political and economic fortunes for the Kingdom of Galicia and Lodomeria ushered in a revival due to newly established Legislative Assembly or Sejm of the Land. The successful renovation of the Cloth Hall, based on design by Tomasz Pryliński and supervised by Mayor Mikołaj Zyblikiewicz, Sejm Marshal, was one of the most notable achievements of this period.
The hall has hosted many distinguished guests over the centuries and is still used to entertain monarchs and dignitaries, such as Charles, Prince of Wales and Emperor Akihito of Japan, who was welcomed here in 2002. In the past, balls were held here, most notably after Prince Józef Poniatowski had briefly liberated the city from the Austrians in 1809. Aside from its history and cultural value, the hall still is still used as a center of commerce.
On the upper floor of the hall is the Sukiennice Museum division of the National Museum, Kraków. It holds the largest permanent exhibit of the 19th-century Polish painting and sculpture, in four grand exhibition halls arranged by historical period and the theme extending into an entire artistic epoch. The museum was upgraded in 2010 with new technical equipment, storerooms, service spaces as well as improved thematic layout for the display.
The Gallery of 19th-Century Polish Art was a major cultural venue from the moment it opened on October 7, 1879. It features late Baroque, Rococo, and Classicist 18th-century portraits and battle scenes by Polish and foreign pre-Romantics.