Last month we stayed at Heidelberg, one of Germany’s most beautiful and interesting cities. Its historic city centre is full of monuments, shops, bars, restaurants and… students, as this is one of the premier universities. On the outskirts towards Mannheim and the Rhine river you will find many industry, especially pharmaceutical, the reason that Heidelberg also attracts business travel. And the reason why a design hotel like the Arthotel is in business. The arthotel is located in the very heart of the old town, beneath the famous castle ruin, and is made up of a historic part and an avant-garde extension enclosing the atmospheric courtyard which offers a taste of both.
With only 24 rooms this is truly a boutique hotel. Rooms are either located in the old or new wing. Rooms in the old part have parquet floors and some offer fresco painted ceilings. The corner room on the first floor is the largest, size junior suite, and offers a romantic corner tower. All rooms offer today’s facilities, including airconditioning, WiFi (at a charge) and a free bottle of mineral water. There is no minibar, but guests can have a drink at the lobbybar or on the terrace in the courtyard. Our light and spacious room was overlooking the rooftop terrace with views over the Heidelberg rooftops and a glimpse of the castle hill. Fantastic beds and a wonderful spacious bathrooms including seperate bathtub and shower. Bathroom amenities by Rituals.
Though the Arthotel is a bit on the pricey side (you do pay for quality here), we were pleasantly surprised to see the menu at the restaurant was not all that expensive. Due to the warm summer weather we had dinner outside. The menu is a fusion of regional and Mediterranean specialties, very well presented and served by excellent staff. Some seasonal specialties (asparagus!) where thrown in for good measure.
All in all an excellent hotel: combining traditional German architecture with avantgarde decor. Everything in order: rooms, bar, dinner, breakfast. The staff needs an extra remark. First class hotels in Germany tend to be on the stuffy side. Here the staff was wonderfully relaxed, although very professional and with an eye for details. Bravo!
When coming by car, spend a few euro’s extra on the garage which is very convenient in this mostly pedestrian city centre. Speaking of cars: be sure to tour the Neckar river valley, a wonderfully green and beautiful area.