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If Buildings Could Talk 1
If Buildings Could Talk 1

Every guest who stays at a Kempinski hotel returns home with memories and stories which will last a lifetime. But it’s not just the people who have fascinating tales to tell. Within our grand portfolio of international hotels lies enormous variation in architecture, style and history, with each property offering luxurious hospitality while maintaining its individual identity.

Each of our 76 hotels has its own story, but here we run through a selection of buildings that could write a book, if only they could talk.

Birthplace of a nation

Villa Rothschild Kempinski is one of the most important buildings in the history of Germany. After World War II, with the country in political, economical and literal ruins, the estate became the heart of Western Germany’s attempts to rebuild. Significantly, it was at this hotel where the decisive contracts for the founding of the Federal Republic of Germany were signed, signalling the start of a new era for the country.

However, the hotel’s interesting history begins way before this momentous date. The property was built in the late 19th century as a summer residence for the renowned banking family Rothschild. When it opened in 1894, the celebrations were attended by a crowd of high-ranking guests, including Empress Victoria and the Prince of Wales.

Just 20 minutes from Frankfurt International Airport, the hotel is the smallest in the Kempinski collection, but packs in an exciting range of features, including historic salons and a 10-hectare park.

Giving the country a lift

As one of the oldest and best-known hotels in Indonesia, five-star Hotel Indonesia Kempinski Jakarta naturally holds a certain prestige in the country. But it was one of the building’s modern facilities that really took the property to the next level. The hotel was the first place in Indonesia to introduce electric lifts and such was the significance of this installation, the feature was declared national heritage in 1993.

Around 30 years earlier, the hotel opened to great acclaim when it was inaugurated by Indonesia’s first president, Soekarno, in preparation for the Asian games.

Extensive renovations have ensured the property maintains its luxurious charm. In line with its 55th anniversary this year, the stunning multi-functional space ‘Pelataran Ramayana’, which once served as ‘the extension of the Presidential Palace’, will be reopened.

The hotel now has an incredible 289 rooms and suites, as well as an excellent selection of facilities, from lavish ballrooms to a traditional spa.

Love, war and politics

There can surely be no greater display of love than building your partner a palace. August the Strong, an 18th century elector of Saxony and King of Poland, certainly thought so and duly wooed his favourite mistress Anna Costanzia by constructing the beautiful Taschenbergpalais.

Unfortunately, despite the fairytale-like appearance of the building, the relationship did not have the dream ending August was hoping for. In a world ruled by men, Anna’s meddling in her lover’s politics was not well received and she was soon banished from Dresden.

The stunning property is now home to Hotel Taschenburg Kempinski Dresden, widely regarded as one of the most beautiful Grand Hotels in the whole of Europe. It offers 182 rooms, 31 suites and a brilliant selection of dining options, including Restaurant Intermezzo and the award-winning Karl May Bar.

The dancing Duke

Archduke Franz Ferdinand is best known for his tragic role in the outbreak of World War I, with his assassination in 1914 directly leading to the start of the conflict. But prior to his grim demise, he was the fascinating heir to the throne in Austria and at one diplomatic evening in what is now Kempinski Palace Portorož, the Archduke impressed attending aristocrats by leading the waltz in the grand ballroom.

Ever since its grand opening in 1912, the hotel has always held an incredible allure, with people from all over Europe flocking to the property to make use of Portorož’s therapeutic sea salts and mud baths.

No matter where visitors travel from, they cannot fail to be dazzled by the hotel’s grand Habsburg facade. Combining Viennese elegance with modern design, Kempinski Palace Portorož is an architectural wonder. With brilliant restaurants and bars, as well as a luxurious spa and pool, the royal Archduke Franz Ferdinand would surely still feel right at home.

All of our beautiful buildings have their own stories to tell, so why not plan a stay and find out more? The teams at all of our hotels would be delighted to help you organise your trip.

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