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“I have a real soft spot for this place”

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Harmony-Hotel Harfenwirt
Ranked #7 of 11 Hotels in Niederau
Swansea, Wales
Level Contributor
5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“I have a real soft spot for this place”
Reviewed 3 March 2010

We have just returned form our second visit to Niederau and the Harfenwirt. It was a lovely lovely holiday and I am so glad we came back. Reviewers are entitled to their own opinions, and TripAdvisor is here to allow everybody to have their say, but if you have booked or are thinking of booking the Harfenwirt please take some of the negative comments with a pinch of salt. Your experience will very much depend on your expectations. If you expect a 5 star hotel you will be disappointed, if you expect gourmet food you will be disappointed. If you come with an open mind and a relaxed attitude, I guarantee you will enjoy yourself : )

Firstly, as one other reviewer pointed out, the Spa facilities are extremely good for a 3* hotel. I have not stayed at another of this rating with such a wide range of facilities, and I most definitely have stayed at hotels with a higher rating which did not deserve it in comparison. Yes the pool is small compared to your local swimming baths, but that's not what it is. The pool is actually a decent size and you can actually swim in it if you want to. There is more than one sauna, an ice bath, a jacuzzi, and one of those infra red booths which looks really cool and probably does great things for tired muscles!

Last year we stayed in the new part, this year we stayed in the old part. Initially I was disappointed, but the room was absolutely fine! Yes the decor is a little dated but the room was so clean, and spacious too. I actually marvelled at how such an old bathroom could have been kept that clean over such a long space of time! I wonder whether Herbert regrets having built the new section to such a high standard (or even at all) as it's turned out to be a bit of a curse for him. Were it not there I suspect that the majority of those who complain about the old section might well have been perfectly happy with their rooms. A little of the green eyed moster making an appearance methinks, which is kind of understandable but no more than that.

The food is fine too. After a long day of skiing there is plenty of hot food available, and although a couple of the combinations made us laugh, there wasn't a single day when we weren't satisfied after a meal. They admittedly seem to struggle to keep up with the demand for eggs and bacon in the morning, but these are a typically british breakfast and if you don't get them you will not starve : ) There is always plenty of bread, meat and cheese, which is after all the continental breakfast you are promised when you book. If you see the bacon and eggs as a bonus you won't be disappointed. I actually managed to have some on most days but couldn't resist finishing it off with a little meat and cheese sandwich as well!

Prices at the bar are equivalent to the UK, but then with the Euro exchange that's not such a bad deal really. The hot chocolates at the bar are out of this world - like drinking liquid Milka... mmmmmmm...! Zipfer is the most common beer drunk and like a typical Austrian beer has a lovely clean taste. You may also get a courtesy shot of home made pear and apple schnapps from Walter. My fiancee had the cheek to compare it to paint thinner, to which Walter looked at him with disgust and replied "Nah... it is only 45%". Peach schnapps (or sweet schnapps as Walter calls it) is "for the girls"!

I celebrated my birthday while were were there this time and Herbert/Walter organised a little cake for me which was gorgeous. What a place to be on your birthday - I would genuinely recommend it.

As for the area itself - one very important element is the local Schilschule. 1. Wildschonau Schischule (red) is amazing. We completed a basic learn to ski course last year, and then booked some private lessons this year. I would highly recommend this to anybody learning to ski. My confidence improved dramatically during this holiday. If you have little 'uns with you I would have no hesitation in recommending the Kinder Club (part of the same ski school) for them to have lessons and start skiing with.

I have probably forgotten to write loads, but now that I've started thinking back to the holiday I've gone in to a little dream world with a big smile on my face. I was actually really sad to leave which will sound pathetic to some of you - others will know what I'm talking about. As I said in the title, I have a real soft spot for this place and I suspect we will continue to return for many years.

Thank you Walter and Herbert - can't wait to see you next year : )

  • Stayed February 2010, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank EmmaTuckBox
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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dublin
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 25 February 2010

This was our first ski trip. I took my two sons aged 16 and 7 and we stayed at this hotel. We found our room to be big, clean and warm. There were loads of wardrobes and storage areas and a lovely big flat screen tv. The accom. was half board and this included a breakfast which was a continental style buffet, at which you could basically eat as much as you wanted, and a dinner which was a three course, soup, choice of 2 main courses and a desert. The food was not haute cuisine but it was hot and filling and it hit the spot. I didn't expect Jamie Oliver so I wasn't disappointed.
The hotel was cozy and homely. Herbert the owner, subject of comment in other reviews, we found to be fine. He was busy but made an effort to go round the dining tables a couple of times in the week to say hello. His brother Walter was really friendly and remembered my 7 year olds name for the week which pleased him no end.
Location wise the hotel is across the road from a lift which connects you to the whole Nierderau ski complex.
We enjoyed our stay and look forward to going back.

  • Stayed February 2010, travelled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank gypsy105
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
St.Albans
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 21 February 2010

Having booked a weeks ski holiday for 5 of us, 2 couples and myself, the Harfenwirt scores positive points massively on an number of fronts, especailly overall value for money.
Food was good, big buffett breakfast and 4 course evening meal.
Drinks are UK prices but hey ho.
Good location at foot of ski lifts, you can get from here on skis to the gondalla.
However if you dont ski back the walk from the gondolla is about 10 mins and is uphill!
The pool , steam room etc are great but all shut early, 7.30 is far too early for me!
I did have a coupel of bizzarre experiences however which makes you either love or loath the experience.
1) When I asked for coffee after dinner is was told firmly "No", I asked why and was told everyone would want one! and I was willing to pay!
2) Trying to get an outside line to call home was almost impossible and when on the last day I asked at reception or my phone to be connected , I was told that this was very suspicious and id need to talk to the owner
3)I wanted to try Dunkel beer, one night I spotted people drinking Dunkel beer in the bar, I requested bottle only to be told it is fpor special guests only!

One thing I would avoid like the plague is the Harp night, anyone who enjoys "Old macdonald had a farm " or "Twinkle Twinkle little star"will be at home , but I found it cringey and a very like Butlins.

The local bars offer much more fun especially Gunters ands BoBos.
O`Mallys is overarted and overpriced.

Ask for rooms in the new block as the differnec is marked, my single room was fine by normal skining standards but they are beeter!

  • Stayed February 2010, travelled with friends
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Helpful?
Thank biggoggles
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Worcester
Level Contributor
21 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 February 2010

Just returned from a ski trip to Niederau and was impressed by the accomodation. We stayed in the new wing and had a very spacious and comfortable room. The location was excellent for the ski-ing and provided good food and a comfortable environment in which to unwind after a day on the piste. The health centre was wonderful and only spoiled by the ill-behaved brats (unfortunately all British) who treated the place without any consideration for fellow residents (not the hotel's fault though!)
Don't believe the hype about the owner, Herbert. His harp evening was odd to say the least and he was hardly the most welcoming host (a cross between Buster Bloodvessel and Victor Meldrew). His brother was far more charming.
Would not hesitate to recommend the hotel though.

  • Stayed February 2010, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank Katharine13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ayr, Scotland
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 February 2010

Just returned from Niederau in Austria having stayed at the Harmony Hotel Harfenwirt. We werent sure what to expect as had read mixed reviews on this hotel, however we were more than pleasantly surprised!! Our room was very spacious (especially when compared to previous skiing accommodation) - very comfortable beds, modern and very comfortable bathrooms - rooms kept spotlessly clean. Swimming pool was fantastic - a bonus after a long day's skiing and a useful alternative to have if no skiing possible. Herbert our host was very entertaining and keen to ensure we were enjoying our stay - his harp playing provided for a very entertaining evening in the bar! Good food with a choice of menu available each evening and plenty of choice in the morning for breakfast too. All in all we would highly recommend this hotel and resort (although not the largest ski resort - they are very good with kids and the skiing range in Auffach accessible by a short free bus journey increased the range and choice of runs)

  • Stayed February 2010, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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Helpful?
Thank skidudesAyr
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
swansea
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 February 2010

Spent a good week here from 6th Feb - 13th Feb. Hotel is 1st class for location onto the slope, good food and good facilities. Read many reports about this hotel which give wrong impression and nearly stopped us booking The Harfenwirt. Originally booked for guest houses, but Herbert gave us a free upgrade into the hotel. Staff very friendly and gave good service. herbert came and sat with us for a while each evening and also talked to each table. Guest houses are about 500m up the road which can be a pain at meal time. I have only 2 faults with our week....The bar area is smoking and can get smokey with inconsiderate british guests (I smoke but decided to go outside). The leisure facilities are very good if children are with parents. A couple of kids were left unattended whilst parents visited steamroom and were left to scream,shout and make a nuacanse of themselves. All in all, a fab week had by all. Pint of beer around e3.40. Great for families with children. A must hotel for the beginners to intermediate.

  • Stayed February 2010, travelled with family
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Helpful?
3 Thank byron001
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Doncaster
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 February 2010

After reading so many negative comments regarding this hotel, we were somewhat apprehensive at what awaited us. However we needn't have worried and I would strongly suggest that you go with an open mind and an attitude to enjoy yourself. We stopped in the guest house of the Harfenwirt. The rooms are spacious and cleaned everyday. This guest house was ideally situated and allowed us to ski back to our front door. The main hotel is only a few houndred yards down the road.

The staff were extremely pleasant and make you feel welcomed. We have always gone to local restaurants for our meals however the food was so nice at the Harfenwirt that we ate in every night. You have a choice of 2 main courses and not one meal was repeated throughout the week. The food was always very hot and served as a whole table and not just one person at a time.

The new extention is beautiful and with a fully equipped spa to wind down in all free of charge remember to pack a swim suit!

I would definately recommend this hotel to anyone and will be visiting again soon myself, for the price this hotel is definately worth the trip - happy holidays

  • Stayed February 2010, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank donny2010
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Harmony-Hotel Harfenwirt

Property: Harmony-Hotel Harfenwirt
Address: Grafenweg 325, Niederau, Wildschonau 6314, Austria
Region: Austria > Austrian Alps > Tirol > Wildschonau > Niederau
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Parking Restaurant Ski-In / Ski-Out Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#3 Ski-In / Ski-Out Hotel in Niederau
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:3 star — Harmony-Hotel Harfenwirt 3*
Number of rooms: 88
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Tradition mixed with modern. Superb family hotel direct on the piste. Breathtaking views from all rooms. New large heated indoor pool (80m²) with sauna and steam bath overlooking the cross country tracks. Large sun terrace facing the Tennladen slopes Ski Arena race track and paragliders landing area. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Harfenwirt Hotel Niederau

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