Coffee with

Veronika Weiss

Veronika Weiss

We meet Veronika at the bar of the new Blyb. Hotel on Lake Tegernsee. She had the task of transforming the villa into a hotel. However, not into one of the typical Tegernsee luxury hotels, but rather into a trendy and modern establishment – with a cool restaurant, a sauna house and a boules court in the garden.

In the inviting bar, you quickly get a good impression of the new clientele: two Berliners are lounging on the sofa with their MacBooks. A barman mixes a drink for a young couple wearing beanies. We listen to a mix of singer-songwriter and jazz sounds. 

Veronika lives around the corner from the hotel. She basically grew up in the area, so she was familiar with the Lake Tegernsee since she was a child.

Before we talk about designing hotels: What is so special about living – and vacationing – on Lake Tegernsee? 

I think everyone who lives here would admit: As far as quality of life goes you can hardly do better. Everything is close by. The lake, the mountains, even large ski resorts in Austria are only an hour away. And you can reach Munich quickly by train. After work we often go swimming or for a hike. Or both. Honestly, what’s not to like? And for vacationers, the possibilities are endless – mountain hikes, excursions, etc. So many beautiful mountain tours and mountain huts to choose from.

Can you share a true insider tip from the locals?

Hm. There’s a mountain tour to the Holzeralm. The mountain hut burned down a long time ago, but it’s also the name of the mountain. On those typical summer days when the Munich crowd flocks to the Neureuth Alm, you only see a few people up there and you have a great view of the whole mountain scenery. Another insider tip: on Fridays and Saturdays, the Boarhof in Holz serves breakfast with home-baked bread and home-grown fruit and vegetables. You will feel some old school Tegernsee vibe then. 

How did you get into architecture? 

I actually started studying art history in Munich, but then very quickly moved to Innsbruck and enrolled in architecture there. I just couldn’t live without the mountains. But I also traveled a lot during my studies and was able to work for a renowned architect in Mexico City for a year.

Mexico. Sounds exciting…

It was actually very exciting for a small town girl like me to live in one of the biggest cities in the world. But the people in Mexico are incredibly warm and open-minded. And there is a lot less bureaucracy when it comes to building a house. You definitely have more creative freedom and can develop lots of simple and beautiful details.

After a few years in an office on Lake Tegernsee and at BAND Architekten in Munich and Berlin, I started my own business in 2021.

The architecture at Blyb hotel is simple, with restrained colors and both the rooms and the bar feature a few selected and restored vintage pieces that you don’t tend to see in other hotels on Lake Tegernsee.

What’s your favorite part about architecture? 

I have a crush for historical buildings. That’s why I helped design and write the Innsbruck Architectural Guide with the Archives of Architecture Innsbruck and over the last 12 years I have specialized more and more in the conversion of buildings. Not only because of the stories lurking between the old beams, but also because it is more sustainable. In Germany for instance the construction industry is responsible for around 40% of carbon emissions. New buildings often seal off green spaces, further reducing biodiversity. The continued use and conversion of existing buildings is a sensible idea to protect our environment and keep it livable.

Nevertheless, it is often more strenuous to preserve a historic house…

Absolutely. Things as sound insulation, fire protection, energy renovations and pipework, that are invisible to the guest, are never easy to solve. With a new building, you can plan a lot of things better in advance. But sometimes there are also positive aspects: In the Blyb. Villa, we found high-quality and well-preserved parquet and natural stone floors beneath the layers of carpet and vinyl flooring. And uncovered them. 

What was the biggest challenge at the Blyb. project? 

We had relatively little time and little money. That’s the best and the worst thing at the same time… so we were forced to make quick decisions, find pragmatic solutions and get our hands dirty. This is only possible with a lot of motivation, teamwork and trust.Thankfully all the operators, planners and craftsmen were on the same page. (Note from us: Marie Eham, the daughter of Pretty Hôteliers Jenny & Andreas Eham from the neighboring Hotel Haltmair in Rottach-Egern, planned the outdoor facilities, the greenhouse and the sauna house, for example). Friends often joined us on the weekends and together we built wooden decks and assembled furniture. We’ve all known each other for a very long time and are also friends in our private lives. That doesn’t always have to be a good thing. But it was a great advantage here because everyone had the dream that this hotel, which is certainly atypical for Lake Tegernsee, would become a reality. In the end, it’s always the people who make the difference.

Many hotels make a lot of mistakes when it comes to colors. What advice could you give to those who want to do the DIY version? 

First of all, look at the entire room. What color are the floor, walls and ceiling? And what surface texture? A cushion should not be a highlight of the room, it should emphasize the qualities of the room. For example, pick up on existing colors in shades. If the walls are smooth, I like to use fabrics with more texture and vice versa. This creates a balance for the senses. Tone on tone always works well. For wild pattern and color mixes, you need a lot of experience to use them harmoniously.

How do you get positive energy into a hotel room? 

I always think that you need a good foundation: High-quality, natural materials and good lighting, good acoustics, not too reverberant through the use of soft surfaces.

Lighting is often not easy. As a general rule, a maximum light temperature of 2700 Kelvin should be selected for cozy lounges. Dimmable lights can be used to adapt the atmosphere to the time of day. Another trick is to have different light sources such as table lamps, floor lamps and indirect lighting in a room to create different moods.

The human eye needs variety and different elements to be stimulated. On the other hand, chaos must be avoided so that people don’t lose their bearings. This can be achieved by zoning parts of the room. For example, a carpet – sofa – lamp – table unit that forms an island. Or sideboard – picture – table lamp – vase. When arranging, you should always look at the overall composition.

In a hotel, care is also important: is the room taken care of, is it kept clean, are the things in it always arranged lovingly and with a fresh look? Perhaps there are fresh flowers or beautiful music that matches the time of day and mood. That is what you perceive positively.

What was your most “interesting” hotel experience? 

I always stay in a small B&B on the Algarve. One of the rooms I slept in was painted fire engine red, others were bright yellow or orange, and the furniture was put together quite randomly. The tiles in the bathrooms on each floor are completely colorful. It’s pretty much the exact opposite of what I personally like when I go on holiday. But it’s cheap and clean and the owners conjure up the best breakfast with fresh orange juice and homemade cakes. Honestly I like that the rooms trigger me like that. Not everyone has the same taste, and that’s okay. And not everyone has the ambition, the time or the financial means, and that’s okay too. And when you’re met with a lot of hospitality and warmth, it’s a nicer experience than staying in the perfectly designed hotel room.

Do you have a personal hotel recommendation – one we don’t have discovered yet? 

The Villa Verdin on Lake Millstatt in Kärnten / Carinthia, Austria. It’s an old house with the typical Austrian charm, somewhere between artistic bohemia and dusty tourist resort. The hotel has been refurbished on a shoestring (again, the walls in some rooms are a little too colourful) and furnished with vintage furniture. You can enjoy their excellent cuisine and a great selection of Austrian wines, direct access to the lake and a slightly quirky atmosphere that is really fun.

Thank you, Veronika. 

You can contact Veronika Weiss through her website or via E-mail at Our review about the  Pretty Hôtels member Blyb. can be seen here. A visit is highly recommended. And the beautiful picture was taken at the Blyb-hotel by Philippe Arlt – .

©Pretty Hôtels

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