New Year’s was great in our family. I hope you had a great one too!
We ( meaning I, ) needed a to get away during the New Year, as didn’t really want to spend it at home thinking about the million things I had to do. The requirements were: a) it had to be cheap, b) it had to be near home, and c) it had to be child-friendly.
Hotel Panorama in Oberhof located in the Thuringian forest fit the bill. We spent the weeked there and spent only around 300 euros, so that is a really good deal.
The view heading up to the hotel was spectacular, with a brilliant blue sky at the background. One of the main attractions for me was the indoor playground at the hotel, which used to be the tennis court/ sports club. They had an indoor wall climbing facility, a Segway course (with Segways for rent) and all kinds of playground facilites like a ball pool, soccer field, and a bobby car racing track. Parents can watch their kids play at the restaurant or even enjoy a massage armchair for a 2 euro/ 10 minute massage.
Day two was spent wandering around Oberhof. The place is known for its skiing and its glass artisans, and so we watched one in action in a shop, where they held a glass-blowing demonstration for the tourists. Several kids were present, and there is really something about fire that transfixes people. I couldn’t believe that the children were so quiet during the whole presentation!
Day three was spent at an exotic reptile and fish terrarium further downtown, and got in for free using the Oberhof Pass that tourists receive. I think I should not have told my kid that pythons eat little children…
Of course, 300 euros also means that you can’t expect the best service and top facilites. Although they tried their best, the the cheap price and the resulting influx of guests meant that I had to wait nearly an hour for my burned “Chicken Cordon Bleo” at the restaurant downstairs.
Our room was great. It was clean, and was cleaned regularly. While the rooms were renovated, I think that our room, and the hotel in general, needs a little updating to move it from 1990 to 2014. That tacky spray-painted mural by the indoor swimming pool has to go, and the hot tub needs to be fixed.
But why does that matter? Thanks to the poor internet connection in the mountains, I was disconnected from Facebook and other distractions unless I was at the lobby, and finally got to read a book from cover to cover within three days. it was unexpectedly a delight. My son had a great time, and is asking when we’re going back. That is what I call a successful vacation.