Guesthouse Gsteier, paradise in the mountains

Guesthouse Gsteier – We will be open for you again from 1 April 2023!

"Gsteier" - that is the name of our own small mountain inn with close-to-nature farming. Sheep graze in the pasture, chickens scratch in the yard, the fountain splashes, a mill wheel turns, the farm garden thrives and sprouts - and the sun shines until half past nine in the summer. Everything on the table is home-produced: eggs, lamb dishes, bacon, salad,...

Its location is "dramatic" high above the wild gorge of the Naiftal, the view and panorama are breathtaking. In autumn 2001, we bought the mountain farm "Gsteier" with inn, situated 1,380 m above sea level, as an addition to the Hotel Hohenwart. The Gsteier is more than just a mountain inn: it invites you to rest after a brisk hike, serves as a retreat for those seeking relaxation, is a museum for those interested in culture and a great adventure playground for children.

Breakfast with a view

Every Sunday in summer, delicious South Tyrolean specialties are served for breakfast at the Gsteier – of course with a fantastic view!

Regional specialties served at 4,600 ft above the sea level in the midst of a green and blooming mountain landscape with stunning panoramic views... that's where the mountain farm Gsteier in Scena attracts families, hikers, active sports fans and connoisseurs. The "Breakfast with a view" takes place every Sunday from 9 AM to 12 AM: We serve a special breakfast with delicacies like spicy lamb ham from own production, cheese from the Boarbichl cheese dairy, eggs from happy chickens, homemade juices and jams, as well as sweets from the bakehouse.

Further information and reservation at the Hotel Hohenwart, Tel. 0473 944400. On request, we will gladly organize a shuttle service for you (for a fee).

Sleeping under the Stars

Be close to nature for a night out: In the warm summer months, the Hohenwart Hotel in South Tyrol offers the unique opportunity to spend the night outdoors in the mountains – however, not on the hard ground in a tent, but rather in a bed on the edge of the forest. Close to the hotel's own mountain lodge Gsteier at around 4,600 ft above sea level, guests can spend the night completely undisturbed off the beaten track. Surrounded by the impressive Alpine scenery and alone under the firmament, both falling asleep and waking up the next morning are a truly fantastic experience. In the evening, a well-stocked picnic basket full of South Tyrolean delicacies ensures the wellbeing of the guests. Washing trough and chamber pot are reminiscent of bygone times. A sumptuous breakfast at the Gsteier mountain lodge the next morning will bring the unique experience to a relaxed conclusion.

Sheltered only by the sparkling firmament: Waking up surrounded by trees, meadows, and birdsong, and enjoying the view over the impressive Venosta Valley. During the warm summer nights, outdoor fans can not only enjoy the varied hiking and sporting possibilities of the Merano region but can even spend the night in the midst of nature. Those who book the outdoor overnight stay will be taken up to the Gsteier with the hotel shuttle. Away from the hiking trails – and therefore not visible –, the bed on the edge of the forest is awaiting the guests for the overnight adventure. When the last hikers have descended and only the occasional ringing of the sheep's bells breaks the silence, the head will be quickly cleared to leave the stressful everyday life behind and pursue one's own thoughts in absolute tranquility. After their arrival, guests can hike as they please, read a book in the fresh mountain air or simply relax and enjoy the views.

In keeping with the outdoor adventure, the Hohenwart kitchen team provides culinary delights in form of a picnic basket filled with plenty of South Tyrolean specialties. We deliberately refrain from electricity in the outdoor room in order to pay tribute to nature – the ideal opportunity to mentally and digitally switch off for 24 hours and experience the moment with all senses. As soon as the summer sun sinks behind the peaks, a torch creates a pleasant ambiance. For those who are courageous and do not want to use the washroom of the Gsteier mountain lodge, a washing trough and a chamber pot are available. After an exciting night under the open sky, a refreshing breakfast awaits the guests at the Gsteier the next morning. And of course nobody is left out in the rain: There is always someone available at the mountain lodge and in case of bad weather the Gsteier offers refuge at any time.


Guesthouse Gsteier, emerged from two different Mountain Farms

The now enclosed Gsteier farmstead originally consisted of two separate estates, namely the "Obergsteier" and the "Untergsteier". Later, the upper farmstead was named the "Außergsteier farm" and the lower one the "Hintergsteier farm".

The Naifbachgenossenschaft Mais cooperative owned the two farms since 1910/11, which they then combined into a single property. The Gsteier farm was left to a tenant, the Walzl family, to run it. Besides farming, they started running a tavern in the Außergsteirer farmhouse.

No road or cable car lead up to the Gsteier back then. Oxen and horse carts had to drive up a steep cobbled path from St. Georgen to extract timber from the forest. After World War II, a cable car was built from the Naiftal Valley. In the late 1970's, a forest lane was built from St. Georgen to the Gsteier farm.

In 1980, the Naifbachgenossenschaft handed the estate over to the South Tyrolean provincial government. Unfortunately, in 1997 the tenant, Johann Walzl was killed in a tractor accident. As a result of this tragic accident, the family did not want to continue working on the farm, so the state government put the property up for sale.

On February 5, 2002, the Mair family of the Hohenwart Hotel in Scena became the new owner. Today, sheeps are raised and vegetables are grown for our own use at the mountain inn and the hotel. Since December 2010, hikers can conveniently reach the Gsteier farm by exiting at the mid-station of the new Merano 2000 cable car.

Attractions around the Gsteier Farm

Chapel of St. John of Nepomuk

He was born as Johannes Wölfl around 1350 in Pomuk, Bohemia, ordained as cleric in 1380, and became priest in the Gallus Church in Prague. In 1389 he became vicar general and canon of the Archbishop of Prague. In the confrontation between King and Archbishop, John was captured by King Wenceslas on March 20th, 1393, tortured and drowned in the Moldova River. The deliverance (legend) reports that the then Queen chose John as her confessor. The King wanted to force John to break the seal of confession, but refused and was therefore drowned in the Moldova River. Through a miracle, the river dried up, so his body was discovered. John was then buried in the St. Vitus Cathedral in Prague. Patron: St. John of Nepomuk is the patron saint of Bohemia, confessors, priests, sailors, rafters, millers and is called upon to protect against all water hazards.

The Mill
The first Gsteier mill was built on the Naifbach stream crossing. During a violent thunderstorm on August 20th, 1902 the Naifbach flooded and destroyed it. Later the Gsteier and Leiterbauer farmers built a new mill with a pond. When yet another storm hit, the pond spilled over and the mill was again destroyed. In 1946 the present mill was then placed directly on the Gsteirerhof farm and operated on a diesel motor until the late 1950’s until grain was no longer cultivated. Mr. Mair sen. renovated the mill after the purchase of the farmstead in 2002, and added a new waterwheel system. The mill would still be fully workable today.

Farming Museum
Mr. Mair sen. has in recent years collected a considerable set of old farming implements used in daily life on the farm in the old barn. These include  a bread grate, washing urn, cabbage masher, wine press, apple grater, pack saddle, carbide lamps, horn sheath, snowshoes, ox harness, ox yoke, fox trap, grain sorting machine, electric motor, milk centrifuge , butter tubs, chestnut roasters, chestnut basket, cabbage plane, cabbage barrel, flax flail, and threshing machine. The Farming Museum is accessible at any time.

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