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Review 3632: Owner, Ferienwohnung Gotthalmseder

Review by Kaydee from TN who is a SlowTrav Contributor

3bed/2bath apartment in St. Gilgen (Salzkammergut), Austria

Living area - St. Gilgen apartment, photo by Kathy Wood


June 2008, One week


Our family of three spent one week at Ferienwohnung Gotthalmseder in June 2008. Friends joined us for three nights at the beginning of the week. We have vacationed several times in Salzburg and the Salzkammergut region, including renting another apartment in the village of St. Gilgen in July 2005. We have rented 25+ houses and apartments in Europe and this rental is one of the top two or three, and definitely the best value!

The apartment is located on the top floor of a large chalet-style house in an excellent location in the village of St. Gilgen, on a slight hill between the main road and the waterfront. It is a two minute walk to the cable car station that takes you up the Zwolferhorn mountain and less than five minutes to the ferry stop on the appealing waterfront of St. Gilgen. The ground floor of the house is a bank, which includes a very convenient ATM. The owner of the house is a single woman whose family is grown; she lives on the next floor. (Since the house is built on a hill, her entrance on the side is also a ground floor level.) There is one parking place assigned to this apartment in front of the bank.

The rental apartment is the entire top floor of the house — over 2000 square feet of living space. It is spacious and light and beautifully decorated and furnished. We were especially impressed with the woodwork in several of the rooms. The style is a mix of traditional elements (e.g., the kitchen eating area, the ceramic stove) and contemporary décor, including some beautiful and interesting artwork. We were extremely comfortable and at home. The photos on the website represent the apartment well, though it was even better (and definitely larger) than we had expected.

The website includes the layout of the apartment. There is a very comfortable living area with a u-shaped couch and a television. Adjoining the living area is a large office area with a desk and built-in bookcases. It was actually nice to have a place to set up our computer and keep our guidebooks and travel literature, though there is not Internet access at the apartment. The kitchen/dining area is separate and very spacious and appealing. We especially liked the eating area with the built in nook and more beautiful woodwork. The kitchen is fully equipped with many extras, such as an electric bread-cutting machine. There is a dishwasher. The apartment is equipped with high-quality pottery dishes and glasses.

The apartment sleeps six people in three bedrooms. There is a very large master bedroom, two smaller bedrooms (though both of a very good size), two bathrooms, a large walk-in closet room next to the master bedroom, a children’s playroom with many games and toys, and even a sauna. The beds are all traditional for this area - two twin beds pushed together with separate bedding (duvets). The bathroom closest to the master bedroom is extremely large with the WC in a separate room. There is a clothes washing machine in this bathroom and a large drying rack that can be placed anywhere in the house. The showers are excellent. The bedrooms have plenty of storage space for clothes, and in addition to the separate walk-in closet room, there is a large storage room with an iron and ironing board where we stored our luggage, and off the kitchen there is another storage room/pantry.

A narrow balcony (traditional for houses in this area) runs across the front of the apartment, accessed from both the living/office area and the master bedroom. This balcony overlooks the street with a view of the top of the Shaftsberg mountain above the buildings across the street. There are several chairs and chaise lounges and also tables that fold out from the balcony rail. My husband spent much of his free time sitting on this balcony, though the view is limited. There is also a small balcony off one of the bedrooms, but it faces to the next house where much to the owner’s dismay, her neighbor has started a business involving wholesale flowerpots. (Unfortunately, it is not a good view at all.) There is a little noise from the street, but overall, we felt it was a quiet location. We do highly recommend a visit to the little musical instruments museum right across the street.

The owner, Helga, was great to deal with before our visit. We communicated by e-mail in English. She did not require any deposit, and we paid in cash during our stay. She was away for most of our week, but was very helpful when we first arrived and we had other local contact numbers in the event of any issue. Her son also has a rental apartment, shown on the same website, located on the main square of the village.

We really enjoy the mountains and lakes of the Salzkammergut and especially the village of St. Gilgen. There are many restaurants, cafes, and coffee shops within a short walk of the apartment. Charley walked every morning to a nearby bakery to buy wonderful rolls and pastries, and there is also a SPAR grocery store just down the street. We did our main grocery shopping at a large supermarket on the main road. There is an Internet café in the village (at one of the coffee shops), though it closes at 6pm. In the evenings there are often free concerts in the village, or it’s just fun to walk around the waterfront and get an ice cream after dinner. Salzburg is about 30 minutes by car. We recommend buying a Salzkammergut Visitors card, as you will save a lot of money on various activities (including ferries, cable cars, salt mine tours etc.) in the area.

I highly highly recommend Helga’s apartment in St. Gilgen and our family plans to stay there again in the future. The rental is priced based on the number of nights and number of people, with a possible minimum stay of five days. We paid €635 for the seven nights for our family of three, and then an additional €90 for our two friends who stayed with us three nights. This included a cleaning fee.

This review is the opinion of a Slow Travel member and not of

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