A Night at Zeilitzheim Castle

There are about 25.000 castles and fortresses in Germany. Nobody knows for sure how many there actually are, so the Deutsche Burgenvereiniung (German Castle Association) has decided to do a final count and registration. They expect to have the final results in about ten years’ time.

A week ago, we spent the night in one of these 25.000 castles. Going back to one’s hometown requires accommodation, and over the past few years, we have tried out several places – mostly inns in villages around the northern Franconia area.

This time, we chose Schloss Zeilitzheim (we had spent a night there about 10 years ago). As it was the case back then – we liked the pavilion, the park, and breakfast the best.

We had booked the Kardinalszimmer (sleeps four people) to accommodate all of us.

We enjoyed sitting on the bench looking out over the park.

 

The castle interior is a museum with its artifacts, showcases in the hallway, and authentic furniture.

I can highly recommend this castle hotel to anyone who just wants to get away for a day or two (or more). Buy a bottle of wine from the owner’s Weingut (winery) and sneak off to the pavilion at night. My husband and I sat there under a starry sky, and had a quiet conversation while sipping our wine. Recommended: Bring a flash light or a candle.

If you like really warm rooms, then I’d suggest you go there during the warmer season. This is a true castle, so in early spring, the rooms/radiators do not heat up so quickly. For me, it was perfect though.

Update on the Construction Site at Ledward Barracks, Schweinfurt

Another trip to Schweinfurt, this time for a family celebration, had us pass by Ledward Barracks again. The corner of Niederwerrner Straße and Franz-Schubert-Straße looked very different, because several buildings have already been torn down.

Back in February 2015, the city of Schweinfurt purchased the areal from the Federal Republic of Germany. In December 2016, the city of Schweinfurt then sold it to the state of Bavaria. The state of Bavaria is now expanding its Würzburg university branch by adding another campus in Schweinfurt on the barracks grounds.

The demolition of the old buildings on Ledward Barracks will cost about euro 2.2 million, and was scheduled to be completed by June 2017. This is when construction of the new International Campus of the University of Applied Sciences Würzburg-Schweinfurt was originally due to begin.

As it is often the case in construction in Germany (and other places as well), things are taking longer than expected. There are a lot contaminated materials to be disposed of. Other building material will just get shredded, and some might be reused. Because of the heavy tanks used back then, part of the asphalt around the barracks is more than one meter in depth.

I took these photos of the former barracks just three days ago. Some buildings will remain; They plan on keeping the former Abrahms Club, the Court of Honor (Ehrenhof), and another building near the west gate, which is used for accommodating refugees, and on lease for the next five years.

 

The artillery barracks, the NCO Club, and the medical clinic are all gone.

 

 

 

Alsatian Folklore Museum in Strasbourg

On our most recent trip to Strasbourg, we stopped at the Alsatian Folklore Museum, a.k.a. the Musée Alsacien, and we loved it. We viewed most of it in an hour, but it was so interesting, we could have easily stayed longer, had it not been for having to return to our hotel in time for check-out.

There are many sections to view, such as traditional rooms, costumes, paintings and historical Alsatian tools, glass paintings, and masks.

What caught my attention were these Kleiekotzer or Mehlkotzer (the one puking flour) or in proper English: flour mill spouts. The term Kleiekotzer dates back to the 18th and 19th century, when these masks were used by millers to let the flour pass through the masks’ mouth into the troughs.

 

In 1903, the antique dealer, Robert Forrer, donated this large collection of carved wooden flour mill spouts to the Society of the Alsatian Museum in order to obtain its membership. His donation back then included 20 mill spouts, 20 chairs, and 30 cask bungs, but today this museum room only houses his flour mill spout collection.

24 Hours in Strasbourg, France

We usually go to Strasbourg once a year, and our highlights remain staying at the 4-star Hotel Cour de Courbeau, and then visiting the flea market on Saturday morning. Again this year, we got there on Friday around 3pm, and left the city on Saturday shortly after lunch. It is enough time to pack in quite a few things, such as a visit to the Alsatian Folklore Museum (about a minute walk from the hotel), visit a few restaurants, shop at the flea market, stop for some coffee and a pain au chocolat, and much more. We usually park at the Austerlitz Car Park, which is a minute from the hotel, has clean facilities, and the rate for one day is just under euro 20.

This is always our first stop – the bridge overlooking the River Ill.

Boat touring the River Ill

This is an ad for the city’s upcoming plans – to build a floating jetty, across from the Historical Museum.

Floating jetty for Strasbourg

This is the courtyard of the Hotel Cour du Corbeau. Built in 1580, it has served as an inn (or hotel) for most of its time since then.

 

View from our room onto the balcony. Last year, we were able to sit on the balcony late in the evening. This year, a Siberian wind made it impossible.

Some of the interior was renovated to reflect its original half-timbered building style.

This is what I found at the flea market – a sewing table, with a painting by Louis Bollinger (a.k.a. BOLL or BOLI).

Postcards of Mainberg Castle in Germany

These postcards of Mainberg Castle are part of my private collection.

Title: Deutsche Heimat

Dated 1924

Dated 1935

Dated 1953

Dated 1955

Dated 1961