Germany Holidays: art nouveau on the Moselle

The Hotel Bellevue on the Moselle in Traben-Trarbach features beautiful views and art nouveau style at its best.

The art nouveau Hotel Bellevue in Traben-Trarbach on the Moselle is something to behold. The unique property includes many decorative references to the small town’s history of wine making, including a tower in the shape of a Champagne bottle. Quirky, full of atmosphere and with amazing views over the river, the Bellevue is the perfect choice for travellers looking for a hotel with a difference.

At the beginning of the 20th century, Traben-Trarbach was the second most important wine trading town after Bordeaux in France. During that time, winemakers and merchants used their wealth to build themselves memorials in the shape of a number of grand art nouveau villas and thereby laying the foundations of Traben-Trarbach’s reputation as an art nouveau town.

The Bellevue, originally called Clauss-Feist, was built by Richard Feist in 1903 and designed by the famous Berlin art nouveau architect Bruno Möhring. It was frequented by the likes of Baron Richthofen (‘the Red Baron’), Count Anhalt and Lord Thyssen. The hotel nowadays, for all its modern conveniences, has kept the spirit of the past, and one can imagine the rich and famous of the time having their meals in the dining room and enjoying the marvellous views on the Moselle which runs by right outside the windows.

The Bellevue has kept the spirit of the past

The four-star hotel survived two World Wars and attempts of modernisation and now has 35 rooms plus a number of suites. Just a few metres along the Moselle promenade further premises have been added over the years so that another 33 apartments and suites can be offered to guests. The interior style is eclectic, rooms are furnished individually, and there is no sign of any corporate chain hotel identity anywhere near.

Even if not staying at the Bellevue, don’t miss having coffee and cake on the beautiful terrace on a sunny day before strolling along the Moselle to have a look at some of the other art nouveau villas still remaining in town. You will have to admit that the locals surely knew how to invest their wine-making money in style.

If you are staying here, you should be sure to borrow one of the hotel’s fleet of bicycles and explore the  rest of the valley and all the wine-making villages that line the riverside path.

And given that Traben-Trarbach is only 20 minutes from Frankfurt Hahn airport, this makes an ideal weekend break destination, especially if you are partial to a modest amount of exercise and a glass or two of fine wine.

Looking for more? See other destinations in Western Germany

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