The history of the Hotel Brunner in Amberg

The first historical records about the Teufelsbäck date back to the 17th century. This roughly covers areas of what is now Battery Lane and Brick Lane. Today, the Hotel Brunner and the bar, bistro and wine bar Atelier Teufelsbäck are located on this site.

In 1999 the local historian Hans Hummel wrote an essay on which this historical overview is based. And this is it: The story of the Hotel Brunner…

Once upon a time…

Once upon a time there was a choleric white baker named Michael Wirth. His well-heeled wife Regina Wirth had acquired some real estate. These included the buildings at Batteriegasse 3.

The curse with the curses

Said baker liked to swear a lot. Especially the devil had to put up with his invocation quite often. So it happened one morning that Michael Wirth was standing in his bakehouse and the fire of his oven did not want to blaze high enough.

A devil in the bakery

The baker cursed and did not leave the devil unmentioned. Suddenly the door to the bakehouse burst open and a horned creature stood blazing before him. Of course, this was too much even for a seasoned man like Michael Wirth. Screaming, he fled to his living quarters, where his wife and daughter listened in amazement to his breathless tale.

Courage of the Holden

The baker’s wife Regina Wirth did not want to believe the described goings-on. So she decided to see for herself.

Whoever did the damage…

A short time later, resounding laughter filled the bakehouse. Michael Wirth took heart and decided to see what was going on. His wife and daughter stood in front of the oven and pointed to the dangerous creature that had so panicked the baker: a billy goat.

…doesn’t have to worry about the mockery.

The embarrassing story soon made the rounds and so Michael Wirth had lost his nickname: “Teufelsbäck”. This name survived the time and finally the restaurant was named after it. Until the building was demolished in February 1958 and the construction of the Hotel Brunner began, people dined at “Zum Teufelsbäck”.

From the post office to the bakery

But the history around the Ziegel- and Batteriegasse has a lot to tell even before the white baker Michael Wirth. The German historian and archivist Dr. Johannes Laschinger writes in an article about the time of the 30-year war. Even before its turmoil, Amberg was an important station for postal traffic to and from Prague.

Therefore, in 1595, Christoph Bayerschmid, a postillion and trained butcher, established the first imperial post office at Ziegelgasse 8. Then in the 1620s he had to move them. Anno 1629 the white baker Christoph Rockhinger started his work in the Ziegelgasse 6. Around 1635 the plague swept through the Ziegelgasse and emptied pretty much every house. After that, the property changed hands many times until the aforementioned Regina Wirth bought it in 1819. In 1821 Michael Wirt, the Teufelsbäck, began his trade.

Upswing through demolition

The buildings in Ziegel- and Batteriegasse changed hands many times in the following decades. At the end of the nineteenth century the inn “Zum Teufelsbäck” was built, which lasted until after the Second World War. But then the venerable building had to make room.

Amberg was in the economic upswing and one needed overnight accommodations for the numerous visitors. Therefore, it was an event when the architect Edwin Gräf demolished the historic inn on the Erras-Brunner estate and started building the modern Hotel Brunner. Already in July 1958 the topping-out ceremony was celebrated.

On the way to the opening

The exceptional performance of the architect made it possible for the Brunner family to invite guests to the opening as early as 20 December 1958.

The press is enthusiastic

The Amberger Zeitung devoted a detailed article to the opening of the Hotel Brunner in 1958. Its title “A hotel that caters to the most discerning tastes” is part of the gastronomic philosophy that first the Brunner family and then the Schatz family have followed to this day.

A city full of pride

At the end of the fifties, the city was proud of the new hotel, whose room size and furnishings were based on the Hilton Hotel in Berlin at the time. The press even called it the “Kempinski of Amberg”, as it was one of the most modern of its kind at the time.

Luxury & Modernity

The more expensive rooms were equipped with telephone, shower, toilet and private bathroom. Soundproofing and carpets were by no means standard at the time. Likewise, hotels or inns could rarely advertise with two receivable radio stations.

Art in the hotel

From the very beginning, guests were offered a feeling of security in the 42 rooms with 50 beds, coupled with individual service and modern comfort. One wing of the hotel was on stilts, allowing for a large heated garage. Art already played a decisive role in the history of the Hotel Brunner, as all the doors of the wardrobes were individually painted. Amberg was enriched by an extraordinary attraction.

Bought out!

In 1978 the Schatz family acquired the hotel. A fundamental renovation and various extensions took place in order to meet the increased demands of the guests.

At the same time, efforts were made to preserve the charm and flair of the hotel. The cosy carpeted floors, the warm light from noble sconces and the rustic wood panelling distinguish the reception hall as well as the guest rooms.

Browse through the first advertising brochure after the 1978 rebuild below:

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A spiral staircase in the foyer

Since its opening, the winding staircase has been a special eye-catcher for guests. The steps were made of Italian marble and underline the dignified ambience of the Hotel Brunner.

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Inspiration by Hundertwasser

To this day, the hotel’s guests appreciate the inimitable family atmosphere, the close ties to Amberg and the individual service.

Managing director Ute Schatz created an environment in which one simply had to feel comfortable. In 2004 she was inspired by the artist Friedensreich Hundertwasser, who wanted to give city dwellers back a piece of nature.

Our little tree tenants

To this day, the small tree tenants grow on the balconies of the hotel to exert a positive influence on the souls of the guests. The plants, including maple, lime and chestnut, are also tended and cared for by Ute Schatz’s successor Konstantin Schatz.

50 years Hotel Brunner

The year 2008 brought a big jubilee for the hotel: For successful 50 years the hotel now already spoiled its guests. Reason enough for a big celebration with great entertainment including a band and gift certificates.

But neither Ute Schatz nor her son and successor Konstantin Schatz rested on their laurels: All rooms were newly furnished and equipped with modern facilities, and the sanitary facilities were also renovated and expanded.

Art in the hotel

Since 2015, the logo of the Hotel Brunner has been shining in blue, visible from afar, and also announces another exciting course of the hotel. In addition to the constant modernization, Konstantin Schatz expanded the concept of the hotel. Together with the Amberg artist Marcus Trepesch he developed art in the hotel. All rooms are to be individually designed by regional artists.

Atelier Teufelsbäck

The constantly growing number of these art rooms deepened the connection to the secret capital of the Upper Palatinate with motifs of the aerial art location Amberg. The examination of the history of the Hotel Brunner gave rise to the desire for another meeting place. What could be more natural than a wine tavern with a cosy beer garden?

The house in the immediate vicinity of the hotel had become vacant. This is how the Atelier Teufelsbäck came into being in the spirit of the former restaurant. Art like the glass mosaic by Marion Mack and Marcus Trepesch united with the story of Michael Wirth, the legendary devil baker.

Lots of light…

Until the year 2020, the Hotel Brunner made a name for itself with unforgettable vernissages, family hospitality and excellent service. A large part of the rooms has already been creatively designed by Amberg artists – partly with motifs of the aerial art location Amberg.

But also all other areas of the hotel are constantly being expanded and modernized. For example, a completely new reception area awaits the guests, where many loving details are waiting to be discovered and admired. In addition, the new light-flooded reception offers insights into the history of Amberg.

…and some shade

In the spring of 2020, the global pandemic shook everyone’s foundations. There had never been such drastic restrictions in the history of the Hotel Brunner. Tourist overnight stays were no longer possible. Only businessmen were still allowed to spend the night in the hotel.

The time for creative alternatives had come. In addition to sophisticated hygiene concepts and humorous videos, managing director Konstantin Schatz built on the strengths of Hotel Brunner. He spoiled the people of Amberg with various delivery services for breakfast and unforgettable concerts in the Teufelsbäck studio.

An outlook

The story of the Hotel Brunner in Amberg is far from over. Become part of the history and visit us!

We look forward to seeing you!

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