Space, luxury and a sense of freedom abound at Gourmethotel Tenne Lodges, a unique skiing resort set in the Italian Alps
“A couple asked if we could help them get married outside a mountain cottage,” says Daniel Schölzhorn, Managing Director for Gourmethotel Tenne Lodges. “They had stayed at our hotel a few times and fallen in love with the area. With two weeks’ notice we managed to find a suitable venue – a little wooden chalet set among the mountains. We all drove up to the mountain station then hiked the last section. A beautiful ceremony with traditional music enchanted everyone. The day will stay with me forever. The relationships our staff have with guests is what makes us special.”
The hotel is a collection of large lodges set within a modern alpine retreat. Each of the lodges features a sense of space and freedom. Daniel describes the style as “modern archaic”: using the same materials as the classic lodges from centuries ago but with a contemporary feel. “The architecture here uses wood and stone to connect with the landscape,” he says. “Biophilic design – which increases connection between the occupant and nature – runs throughout. We have harnessed the outdoors and created a five-star accommodation: the infinity pool reaches towards the forest, the spa treatment room floats among the mountains.”
Directly behind the hotel is the Racines Giovo Ski Resort, which means that guests can ski straight after breakfast. “The slopes here hold the snow for much longer than most,” says Daniel, “which gives us a great season.” The hotel also offers extensive hiking routes for the summer months, including tours of the South Tyrolean Mountains. The region is impressive under snow but can be even more beautiful in spring, when the thaw begins and wildflowers appear. Guests can visit alpine meadows in Ratschings, the mountain peaks, the waterfalls or the botanical gardens of Trauttmansdorff Castle.
The Gourmethotel Tenne Lodges is indebted to partners such as the window manufacturer Finstral. “They aim at perfection and always deliver on their promise,” says Daniel. “The elegant composition of light in the lodges through the windows creates a spectacular atmosphere that our guests love.”
The traditions and cooking styles of the Dolomites have influenced the menu. The hotel’s head chef Mike Bräutigam, who previously worked at the three-Michelin-starred Gusto in Portugal, uses regional and seasonal ingredients to create rustic dishes like beetroot risotto or rabbit, but transforms them into light delicacies. “After a long day in the mountains, to come into the warmth and scents of the restaurant is glorious,” says Daniel. “It’s also exciting to look out from the restaurant and see the skiers flying down from the mountain station at the end of day – they go quicker when it’s time for dinner!”
For those looking for a special evening, the wine cellar is a must visit – a work of art in its own right. Between walls of exposed stone and alcoves full of rare bottles, a table is suspended from the roof by thick chains. This was all designed by the stonemason Florian Oberhöller who created the exterior design, the wine cellar and the outdoor Jacuzzi. “The theme of freedom is encompassed by the legless table,” says Daniel. “There is nothing to get in the way while you enjoy tasting from our hand-picked selection of more than 500 gorgeous wines. Like everything else in the lodges, our wine cellar should leave you feeling liberated and relaxed. And maybe even a little merry.”