Making a virtue out of necessity: The Eh’Häusl
In 1728 the council of the city of Amberg decided that couples wishing to marry had to show a debt-free house and land. A real low blow for the less well-heeled, but all the more amorous Ambergers. The background, however, was a rather pragmatic one. Those in power wanted to keep the birth rate of the poorest and poorest in check. Common employees such as farmhands or servants were not even allowed to marry.
A merchant of the time, eager to marry, sensed an opportunity to make a virtue out of necessity. In 1728 he simply built a front and a back wall between the two adjoining properties in a gap in Seminargasse, put a roof on it and the regulation was fulfilled. After his honeymoon he sold the emergency house, later christened the Eh’Häusl, to the next couple disadvantaged by the law. It was only two and a half meters wide and according to some sources even five stories high plus basement.
On the way to the smallest hotel in the world
This demeanor quickly took on a life of its own, and so many lovers found marital bliss. Until the 19th century the improvised house is said to have changed its owner very often. The catastrophe occurred in 1976 during the renovation of the old town. One of the neighbouring houses was demolished in the course of this and the Eh’Häusl collapsed completely.
It was then rebuilt and continued to operate as a hotel. The self-proclaimed smallest hotel in the world was completely renovated for almost a quarter of a million euros. It offers comfort and luxury on its many floors on the wedding night.