Expect the unexpected! Kranich Hotel & Museum is far out there. Not only geographically speaking. Get ready for an eclectic mix of creatively styled rooms, art installations and a terrific park surrounding all of it. And the beach is but 5 minutes away.
Truth be told? We fell in love with the place before having arrived. In this very northern part of Germany you drive through endless, wide fields with horses grazing in the green grass. Add a light breeze and the salty air of the nearby Baltic Sea and a bit of Long Island scenery and you get the idea.
Following a homemade sign, your travel finally comes to an end on the grounds of an old estate dating all the way back to the13th century. The whole property is made up of several houses. A small yellow one is the home of the owner: Dr. Bettina Klein. A very interesting and charming art historian, who has lived in Japan for many years and who is the creative mind behind Kranich Museum & Hotel.
So what’s to experience?
For starters, you pick up your key from a “safe” (which turns out to be a small wooden box) in front of the house. Then you may enter. Which means, you find yourself in an entrance hall short of any signs of comfort. Unplastered walls, rough doors and a floor that seems to be under construction. Bettina Klein admits, that this particular moment is – well – a bit “weird” for some guests.
We were allowed to spend the night upstairs on the third floor in one of the nice apartments. So we made our way up. And still: The staircase looks pretty much unfinished.
But it doesn’t really matter, because after a while you realize: This is exactly the idea of the whole project.
When you arrive at the room, there’s pure joy. It is truly the opposite of any business hotel. Nothing is fake here. The plaster on the walls, the bricks, the antiques, the bathrooms and the floor: this is a total work of art that connects the history of this manor house with today.
To be very honest, the Kranich Museum & Hotel is one of the very few houses where you can really feel the history. And in addition to the details, we were especially thrilled by the light seeping through the open windows in the morning. Just amazing.
But as a hotel guest you really have to have a crush on this rough and imperfect style.
The manor house consists of three floors. On the first floor there are the six guest rooms and a kitchen where breakfast is prepared. On the second floor there’s a constant art exhibition. And a room that can be rented as an official registry office for weddings. Then on the third floor there is the attic and at the respective ends are two large apartments. The largest is apartment No. 10, which has 80 square meters, a kitchenette and the evening sun. The smaller one (more for two persons) has 43 square meters, a small kitchen and the morning sun.
From June there will also be a just renovated garden house with two apartments, which can of course be rented together as a family.
The entire second floor of the manor house is reserved for art. You can find works of art and installations. Most eye-catching is an inflatable construction by Alex Schweder. It was shown at the Architecture Triennial in Lisbon in 2013 and is now here. Two visitors are to be lifted out of the room, so to speak, with the help of inflatables hidden in a black carpet. But we do not want to reveal details here.
Breakfast is “handed over” in the kitchen at a pre-arranged time. You may decide for yourself where to have breakfast. There is enough space (and a table) in each room, but in the summer everyone mingles in the garden, there are tables and chairs ready.
In a separate building at the entrance you find Café Kranich, which is also visited by many external guests. This summer it is open from 12:00 to 22:30. So you don’t have to leave the area at all. Kranich Café serves homemade cakes and delicious meals with many ingredients from its own herb and salad garden.
One of the most important features of the Kranich Museum & Hotel is its special location: You stay in a place that is only 5 minutes away from the “Bodden” of the Darß headland. A Bodden is a kind of inland water bay of the sea. There are also small beaches and harbors here. If you rent a boat, you can also sail out to the Baltic Sea from here. However, many guests go directly to the beaches of Ahrenshoop or Zingst (25 minutes away by car).
Sure, they are welcome. There is also creative sleeping possibilities, but the rooms and apartments are not completely built for families. However, in the garden there is a swing and a slide.
Doubles from 82 Euro. Apartment from 122 Euro per night. Breakfast is extra (10,50 Euro per person).
Booking & Contacts
Kranich Museum & Hotel
18317 Saal / Hessenburg