This year’s journey to the annual Geneva Motor Show led us along the Mosel river in the West of Germany, where we had the pleasure of staying at one of the most prestigious hotels in the entire region. We were hosted by the five star Victor’s Residenz – Hotel Schloss Berg for one night before continuing our journey south via France.
Victor’s Residenz-Hotels is actually a hotel group that has a modest portfolio of luxury properties throughout Germany. The name might ring a bell if you have ever searched for luxury properties in the Saarland region, as the luxury hotel group’s presence in Saarland is quite substantial. Besides the five properties in the Saarland area, Victor’s Residenz hotels can be found in Rheinland-Pfalz (Frankenthal), Nordrhein Westfalen (Gummersbach), Thüringen (Erfurt and Teistungen), Munich, Leipzig and German capital the Berlin (2), bringing the full portfolio to a total of 13 properties.
Victor’s Residenz – Hotel Schloss Berg has a total of 105 rooms and suites. Situated on a local hill with views over the nearby Mosel valley, the hotel comprises of two buildings. The hotel complex is housed in and around an Italian-Mediterranean Villa and a Rennaisance castle of which the roots date back to as early as the 9th and 10th century.
The ancient castle, on which the hotel in its current state is based, has quite a rich history. In the year 1580 the castle was reconstructed to what it currently looks like, before ending up in Prussian hands in 1815. Another bookmarked page in the property’s rich history book takes us back to the 1944/1945 so called “hunger winter” during World War II, when the entire castle was pretty much destroyed as a result of heavy fighting in the area.
1950 marked the year that the Saarland region took control of the castle ruins, ordering a full restoration in 1955. From then on until 1984 the iconic castle served as a destination for educational trips, providing accommodation for entire school classes for so called “project weeks” that would typically last 1 to 3 weeks at a time. In 1986 the building was acquired by a local hospitality company that turned the complex into a hotel with restaurant and casino in just a couple of years time. It wasn’t until 1997 that the hotel officially received the name “Victor’s Residenz – Hotel Schloss Berg”.
The concept of the luxury property evolves around “Italian flair with a historical charm”. It’s Victor’s Residenz-Hotels Saarland CEO, Susanne Kleehaas, who is partly responsible for the hotel’s interior design and deserves the credit for the interior design of the hotel’s seven “God Suites”, so I was told. Upon entrance, the hotel immediately gave me the impression that you need to give every corner and design feature a second look. Evidently the beauty is in the details, something Kleehaas didn’t skip whilst on her mission designing the hotel’s interior, despite not being a professional interior designer. A true achievement, being able to go wild with your passion on a project of such importance.
We mainly find the Italian flair on the hotel’s exterior, with a warm beige façade being interrupted by a pattern of green windows with French balconies. Inside it’s the historical charm that greets you upon entrance with a rather interesting color scheme. It’s mainly the abundance of gold that jumps out and gives you that unmistakable feeling of being in a truly luxurious place.
Looking at the complex as a whole, it’s been designed to have two wings, with guest rooms, and facilities spread out over four floors. Due to the property being located on a hill, the lobby is located on the second floor and provides guests with an amazing panorama of the valley and hotel gardens opposite of the grand entrance. Adjacent to the gardens is the hotel’s wellness area and beauty farm, designed by local architect Hugo Heinz Köper and built back in 2001. From the outside it basically looks like a closed veranda, housing a circular indoor pool, Jacuzzi and pool bar with the glass roof allowing for sufficient natural light to come in.
The hotel’s location in the scenic Saarland region, which hosts the well-known Mosel river and has a rich wine heritage running right through its heart, makes for the perfect weekend getaway destination. The point where the German, French and Luxembourg borders come together is just a stone’s throw away and so is the Luxembourg town of Shengen, yes it’s indeed what the “Shengen Area” is named after.
The surrounding area has a rich wine heritage that follows along the Mosel riverbanks. The beautiful and scenic vineyards offer a variety of landscapes that offer various adventurous hikes that only help to enjoy the nature even more. Going for a scenic drive similarly pays off, something we thoroughly enjoyed during our stay.
The area is well connected, with both larger and visit-worthy cities Trier and Saarbrücken within reasonable driving distance. The region is also served by various Autobahns that lead travelers to both Luxembourg and France in no-time.
We had the pleasure of occupying a junior suite at the hotel’s third floor, a very detailed, spacious and luxury space to stay the night indeed. Accompanied by a hotel employee we were given a tour of the suite, of which the door opening procedure required the most explanation. An RFID tag and many twisting maneuvers revealed the luxurious space that is the junior suite. Our luggage was already transported to our suite courtesy of the hotel’s butler, emphasizing the five star services that the hotel offers.
A hallway led us to the suite’s living area that featured all the needs a guest may have, including the plate of fine macaroons that looked like a piece of art on its own. The living area is complimented by an espresso machine, minibar, comfortable seating area and LCD TV. The natural light comes from a door that makes up the French balcony and gives you that amazing view over the surrounding region.
A rather large pillar stands in the middle of the suite, marking the partition of the spacious accommodation. On the other side we find the sleeping area with an enormous king-size bed and a sizable wardrobe that makes my personal wardrobe look like the size of a kitchen cabinet. A desk and fashionable futon make up the rest of the suite’s furniture, which leaves addressing the bathroom.
The bathroom is a large open space with a separate walk-in shower area. It’s again the gold accents that jump out around the bathroom’s mirrors and lavatories. The toilet is tucked away in the corner, right next to the huge rounded bathtub that is easily the largest feature of the suite’s bathroom. Nice details once again are the exclusive toiletries supplied by none other than world-renowned beauty and fragrance brand Bulgari.
Having talked (and walked if you’re interested) you through one of the hotel’s junior suites, it’s the so called “god suites” that deserve some extra attention. If you’re looking for something truly special, one of the hotel’s seven god suites might just fulfill some of your deepest desires. The seven suites are called after Roman gods, hence the names: Jupiter, Neptune, Mercure, Apollo, Diana, Minerva and Venus.
If you think you’ve seen it all in terms of eccentric decoration, guests are in for a treat when staying at one of the hotel’s luxury suites. High quality furniture goes together with a luxury décor, fine fabrics and linen, gold plated statues and lion heads. Every single god suite has its unique design, courtesy of Victor’s Residenz-Hotels Saarland CEO Susanne Kleehaas and promises guests a truly unique and luxury experience.
After a welcome drink in the lobby and a bit of relaxing, it was time to experience some of the hotel’s facilities other than the WIFI hotspot. The latter not so much living up to the modern day standards that us bloggers tend to have, while the extra fee of €12 to increase your connection speed for 24 hours wasn’t too chic either. All was forgiven however, when burying our phones to take a lap around the hotel’s comfortable pool followed by a relaxing bubble massage in the adjacent Jacuzzi. You’d almost forget that the sauna was unfortunately closed for renovation purposes, but I can’t say I really missed it.
The hotel’s wellness area has plenty of seating space around the pool, whilst also offering separate seating areas with solar rooms and massage treatments. Further complimented by a gym and pool bar, the downstairs wellness area seems like a nice place to spend a rainy afternoon. Opened pretty much the entire day, a fresh start in the morning or a relaxing end of the day is guaranteed.
Restaurants and Bars
There are absolutely no shortcomings in terms of dining and drinking options at Victor’s Residenz – Hotel Schloss Berg. Let’s start out with the obvious star venue of the property, Fine dining by Christian Bau (***), a 34-seat fine dining experience courtesy of three Michelin-star cook Christian Bau. His specialties evolve around fish and fruits de mer, creating true delicacies with influences of the Asian cuisine at his own restaurant for over a decade now.
On the same level of the wellness area we find the hotel’s Italian restaurant “Bacchus”, serving dishes inspired from both the Italian and Mediterranean cuisine. The third venue is Victor’s Landgasthaus “die Scheune” with a more comprehensive menu that includes local delicacies. After dinner, the lobby bar and Caesar’s bar are excellent options to enjoy a drink.
The service we enjoyed was of an exemplary level, starting upon arrival with the butler kindly offering to carry our luggage. From the welcome drink to the personal tour around the suite and direct help with any requests or questions we had to the excellent service at dinner in the restaurant, it simply couldn’t have been better. It’s the high degree of personalization that you look for when booking a stay in a luxury hotel like this one.
Going around our junior suite I stumbled upon a “hideaways hotels” book that features a select amount of luxury hotels throughout Europe, including Victor’s Residenz – Hotel Schloss b
Berg. I would say that our experience here more than justifies its presence in that particular book. The high degree of personal service, the premium facilities and luxury ambiance puts this hotel right in the top spot of luxury hotels in the Saarland region. I am prepared to go even further by saying that this hotel probably deserves to be ranked among the country’s top 15 hotels.