"THE COOLEST HOLIDAY". Why grill your kids on the sardine-tin beaches of the Med? The Alps are far more family-friendly, says Mark Hodson.
...the past few summers in southern Europe have seen soaring temperatures, widespread droughts and forest fires..... If you are persuaded to head for the hills, one destination is Austria. It????s home to some of the most eye-poppingly beautiful Alpine scenery and it????s also inexpensive....We (the family, including our nine-year old son Callum, and 16-month-old daughter, Helena) decided to check out the Hotel Theresia in Saalbach-Hinterglemm, a farming village-cum-ski resort in Salzburgerland.... The drive to Hinterglemmn from the airport was so eerily quiet that I began to suspect, that something was wrong. This was a Saturday in August. Where was everybody? We found the hotel wedged into the floor of a steep-sided valley, surrounded by lush meadows, rustic Alpine houses, and cows with bells around their necks. It had a look of Teutonic tidiness to it: neat rows of BMWs and Audis in the car park, window boxes bursting with flowers....Theres is nothing flashy about the Theresia - the Austrians aren????t flashy by nature - but what it does deliver is friendly service, outstanding food aand attention to detail. The facilities were impressive: indoor and outdoor swimming pools, a table tennis room, PlayStation consoles and safe play areas for tots. ....If a hotel of similar calibre sets rates like these in Britain, it would have a waiting list longer than a NHS dentist????s. But, according to the hotel????s owner and manager, Marianne Brettermeier, few Brits know about ist. "They don????t come in summer. They seem to think the mountains are only for old people rather than families", she shrugged. "It????s strange, there is so much for families to do here." She was right ........
Nick Dalton makes a circuit of one of Austria`s nicest ski areas (and that`s a compliment)
".......and certainly the coolest place in the valley to stay is the Hotel Theresia ......"
THE DAILY TELEGRAPH
"THE FLAGSHIP OF A NEW AUSTRIA, where tradition meets today in absolute luxury. From the outside the Theresia looks like a smart, long-established hotel (which it ist); on the inside, however, it´s at the cutting edge of style......."
"Clear air, an abundance if activities, new spas and stylish hotels... it`s little wonder that Europe`s great lakes and mountain regions are among this season`s must-visit destinations ...
One of the coolest places in the Alps, the exterior of the Garden-Spa-Hotel Theresia couldn´t look more traditionally Austrian - or its interior more contemporary. Walk in and you are greeted by open fireplaces and famous artworks including The Cow by Andy Warhol, which hangs in the funky bar .....
Monica Ali, author of the bestseller "Brick Lane", guest - togehter with her husband - at the Gartenhotel in winter, wrote in Daily Mail: ALI IN WONDERLAND ".....I thought, the hotel would be nothing special - a kind of Hilton in the sky. I was wrong. This hotel is stylish and cosy. The owners, Mr. & Mrs. Brettermeier, and their staff are genuinely welcoming: nothing is too much trouble and children seem superbly well catered for."