Altstadthotel Weisses Kreuz | Innsbruck Austria | Designed by noa architects | The Aficionados

Baroque Beaut

Altstadthotel Weisses Kreuz | Innsbruck Austria | Designed by noa architects | The Aficionados

Baroque Beaut

Luxury Accommodation | Altstadthotel Weisses Kreuz | Innsbruck Austria | Designed by noa architects | The Aficionados

Baroque Beaut

Altstadthotel Weisses Kreuz | Innsbruck Austria | Designed by noa architects | The Aficionados
We love the historical mystery surrounding the Stuben Suite – where in the process of renovation a glorious mural of Emperor Maximilan on horseback revealed itself on the wall

Intro

Heritage: redefined, is how to look at Altstadt Hotel Weisses Kreuz, based in Innsbruck’s old town, overlooking the city’s landmark Golden Roof (Goldenes Dachl), dusted in gilded copper tiles.

Affectionately termed by its motif of ‘chic-shock-Baroque’, Altstadthotel Weisses Kreuz, originally built in 1465, is a timely marriage of its opulent Baroque past with a high concept design that pays homage to the rhythm of change that has taken place over centuries. A unique challenge for our favourite Bolzano architect duo noa*, the existing building’s front façade shows a respect for local vernacular while a new loft level adds a sixth floor and a whole new dimension of choregraphed cool. Street-side, a sloping roof nods to preservation while the rear breaks up into six glass cubes, a modernist space of sheer delight – especially from the inside where you can chill with the city skyline and a crafted cocktail at Blaue Brigitte, the blue bar.

Down in the ‘chambers’, discover heritage hallmarks proudly on show in all their irregular glory: Gothic ceilings, arches and varying room heights, balanced by a consistent application of single-use colour. Flecks of Baroque keep the past in check including decorative photographs, original murals that literally appeared on the walls during renovation and heavy wood ceilings.

The story of this illustrious building started back in the vestiges of time. Picture a medieval 1465, and this Baroque beaut stands proudly on bustling Herzog-Friedrich-Straße in the heart of Innsbruck, serving as a roof over the heads of passing dignitaries and nobility; even a teenage Mozart, perhaps Austria’s most famous citizen, stayed here in 1769. Since then, its faded glamour left a dilapidated and somewhat insalubrious hostelry. Thankfully owners Thomas and Brigitte saw beyond its crumbling remnants and together with noa*, the heritage haunt has been brought right into the now with startling, eye-catching acclaim.

Proud of being subversively local, it’s here you’ll notice the little details - refreshing Austrian ‘Tirol Kola’ rather than the well-known global brand, eggs from hens that roam the valleys and organic cosmetics from Zillertal. Welcoming all who may prefer life away from the norm, for those seek something different, creative and a little bit whimsical, Hotel Weisses Kreuz Innsbruck will bring a smile to your face in this quirky hotel that just works.

Rooms

Altstadthotel Weisses Kreuz | Innsbruck Austria | Designed by noa architects | The Aficionados Altstadthotel Weisses Kreuz | Innsbruck Austria | Designed by noa architects | The Aficionados

Spread out across five floors, the 48 rooms or ‘chambers’ as they’re known at Hotel Weisses Kreuz, are by-products of an archaic infrastructure – and this touch of irregularity gives meaning to the design of the rooms, in short – their quirkiness is celebrated.

However, as with the rest of the hotel, huge strides have been made to create something new and different – as seen in the rooms with internal patios and balconies or front-facing rooms that allow you to engage with life on Innsbruck’s historical street, Herzog-Friedrich-Straße.

If you’re a Mozart mega-fan, pick the Mozart Suite, decorated in solo-use deep red, coming with a billiard table and private cognac and whiskey bar – the perfect combo perhaps? If bubbles are your thing, book the Golden Suite, which overlooks the Golden Roof (Goldenes Dachl), accompanied by a glass of something chilled from your private champagne bar. We love the historical mystery surrounding the Stuben Suite – where in the process of renovation a glorious mural of Emperor Maximilan on horseback revealed itself on the wall. Gaze at this whilst enjoying the cosy wood-panelled ceiling.

Foodie

Altstadthotel Weisses Kreuz | Innsbruck Austria | Designed by noa architects | The Aficionados

Eschewing a traditional ground-floor reception, the sixth floor embodies a multi-faceted space, where you’ll end up chilling in during your stay for check-in, breakfast, drinks or finger food, lured by its magnetic panorama over the city, edged by the dramatic Nordkette mountain range.

This lofty space is also a veritable style haven with cosy tables pocketed under glazed eaves and a long, gleaming communal table, custom-made from brass, enhanced by smoked oak flooring and a saturating dark blue colour scheme. Evenings see a cool crowd gathering for its range of cocktails, wines, coffees and regional beers accompanied by nibbles. You’ll need to head out for dinner, the team here can make recommendations and reservations.

Morning sees a 100% local breakfast, something Hotel Weisses Kreuz are proud to celebrate with their roster of local foodie connections, farmers and producers for eggs, ham, meats, fish and honey.

Location

Innsbruck Tirol Austria | Altstadthotel Weisses Kreuz | Innsbruck Austria | The Aficionados

Located in the heart of Innsbruck’s old town on the historical splendour of Herzog-Friedrich-Straße, Hotel Weisses Kreuz overlooks Innsbruck’s most famous symbol, the ornate and shimmering Goldenes Dachl (Golden Roof), which was built in celebration of Emperor Maximilian I and Bianca Maria Sforza’s wedding in 1494. Nearby you’ll also find the Imperial Palace (Hofburg), Triumphal Arch (Triumphpforte) and a wander by the River Inn will bring you alongside colourful traditional Tyrolean houses.

What’s also a fabulous touch is that the hotel can lend you the house Land Rover Defender for exploring further afield such as the surrounding Alps so you can get your city and rural fix staying at Hotel Weisses Kreuz.

Mozart, perhaps Austria’s most famous citizen, stayed here in 1769

Owners

The rebirth of the Altstadthotel Weisses Kreuz has been a passion of current owners Thomas and Brigitte, who are no strangers to complex restoration projects, particularly when you have a house dating back to 1465. As a listed historical building, the complete restoration involved local historians and heritage protection agencies, making the process even more interesting and enjoyable.

As Thomas explains "We are the custodians of a special place in the heart of Innsbruck and feel that we have created a new chapter in its wonderful history." Purchasing the property in 2017, they could see beyond the building in its current state – a much-rebuked hostel – to its current transformation. Two years of living with the hotel as it came were enough to give them a wealth of experience of improving it and enhancing the historical features that were begging to shine.  Enter noa* architects, and earnest structural work began to turn this ugly duckling into a beautiful swan. 

"It was important to us from the onset that the hotel's architectural merits and historical notes should be allowed to flourish whilst being bold, bringing in new additions that mimic the traditional in an abstract narrative. We think Mozart would certainly approve."

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