Expert guide to Lech
The village of Lech is based around a central church and on either side fast flowing river. Originally the domain of farmers, it has expanded over the years, and those with deep pockets are well-catered for with three five-star superior hotels, as well as luxurious shopping emporiums, notably the long-standing and well-regarded family run Strolz ski shop, which has several branches in the area.
At the lower end of the hotel scale, it’s also possible to find comfortable and welcoming family-run options at affordable prices. Most of the accommodation is on the main road which runs through the resort, and in the Tannberg and Omesberg areas on the way to the outlying village of Zug.
The car-free satellite of Oberlech above the village, served by the 80-person Bergbahn cable car from the village, is almost into a resort in its own right, home to high-end hotels that to which luggage and catering supplies are delivered via a network of underground tunnels. Staying in these luxurious confines does not mean isolation however, since the cable car runs from 7am to 1am.
A small hotel that’s been run for 47 years by the Schwärzler family, who have been deeply involved in developing Lech’s image into a top-flight international destination. Back in the Seventies, Hubert Schwärzler ran the tourist office while wife Isolde built up the business from b&b to a hotel with simple evening meals of gulaschsuppe and frankfurters. These days their son Michael and his wife Claudia have transformed the Haldenhof into a comfortable four-star with an excellent spa and a first class restaurant.
Dating from the Twenties, this is one of Lech’s two original inns beside the church. Older visitors might have fond memories of tea-dancing in ski boots in the Sixties to Beatles’ songs covered by the resident oompah band. These days, Hotel Tannbergerhof is a smart and sophisticated four-star.
Book it: From £977 with Ski Solutions.
Hotel Almhof Schneider
One of the three superior five-star hotels in Lech, this hedonistic hostelry was favoured by Princess Diana in the last years of her life. The current extended farmhouse dates back to the Twenties and the Schneider family can trace its origins in the Lech valley back to 1451. The Hotel Almhof Schneider’s 18 rooms and 35 suites are all individually decorated, inspired by Alpine themes. The wellness area has a pool, gym, solarium and sauna. The two restaurants are expensive, but among the best in town.
A small and attractive B&B, Haus Schrofenstein is a three-minute walk from the Bergbahn cable car up to Oberlech, and a five-minute walk from the village centre. It’s run to a high standard by the local Wolf family, and has a sauna and a sun terrace where drinks and snacks are served. Food delivery service is available in the evenings.
Slightly out of the centre towards Zürs, the three-star hotel Lech is charmingly run by the Wingelmayr family. Bright, modern rooms vary from 16sqm to 68sqm and the comfy lobby area, with sofas and an open fire, leads onto a cosy dining room and bar. Free home made cakes and strudels are served after skiing. A sauna, steam room, massage room and relaxation area make up the wellness suite.
A central four-star B&B built in the 1960s and now run by the daughter of the founders, hotel Antonius has comfortable and stylish rooms, suites and apartments. Excellent buffet breakfast and free soup, snacks, cakes and fruit after skiing. There’s saunas, a steam room, a infra-red room, solarium and ice grotto, plus cosy bar and lounge with wooden ceilings.
Founded by the late Othmar Schneider, who won gold in the slalom at the 1952 Oslo Winter Olympics, and now run by his his daughter Gertrud Schneider, the Kristiana’s roster of famous past clientele includes Boris Becker. Lech has a host of hyper-priced flashy five- and four-stars, but the Kristiana is much more discreet and needs booking well in advance. The 29 rooms and suites are all individually designed in styles that range from Chinese to French boudoir. There is a ski nanny service for children aged three years and above.
Widely thought to be the best hotel in Lech, the Arlberg is central and elegantly rustic but modern, built in chalet-style. Its 51 rooms are all individually designed and furnished. As well as the main candle-lit traditional restaurant, there’s a classic Austrian stube and another restaurant offering Italian fine dining. Fabulous outdoor pool and a variety of steam rooms and saunas.
A lovely old Relais & Chateau hotel on the main street, the five-star Post hotel has been owned by the same family for 80 years. The 46 spacious rooms and suites are a mixture of traditional and rustic and innovative and modern. The four restaurants all serve delicious food. There’s an outdoor pool and separate kids’ pool, sauna and steam room.
Booking.com rates above are guide prices per person per night, please note that packages can differ across accommodation. Owing to the current coronavirus pandemic, these rates may change. Please check the properties’ websites for further information on what’s included.