The atmosphere downstairs in the Elisabeth is special as things warm up in the early evening: relaxing and friendly, but orderly and elegant, too. All ages seem to fit in effortlessly, even the very young children. You start thining that nothing’s wrong in the world. How is it done?
Marion Gafgo, likely as not in traditional Austrian dress, is one of those hostesses who somehow always seems to be around even if she’s not, she could be there in spirit. She must be one of the most natural and gifted hoteliers we’ve met, exuding good cheer and humorous intelligence as if second nature. She’s backed up by exceptionally well trained, friendly young staff, who all seem to work in effortless synchronisation. This is what the best hotel keeping is all about, and not surprisingly Marion has learned it almost from the cradle. Her mother Elisabeth began the venture in the 1960s, as the innovative first self- service restaurant in the Arlberg, later adding rooms. She ran it with her husband Ortwin Gafgo (the surname is Czech) until they retired in 2004, when Marion took over. It’s been periodically re-designed and overhauled to keep pace with the times but of course what’s offered here the genuine charming small hotel experience – is timeless.
Comfortable bedrooms, all modestly individual, with stencilled decorations, range from smallish singles to generously sized doubles. Besides the service and atmosphere, which can’t really be priced, the other bonus is the ‘wellness’ centre and small basement swimming pool, which you won’t find in any other Lech hotel in this price range. Recommended to us by one of our most hard-to-please reporters, who has been coming here for 20 years, indeed, much of the Elisabeth’s business is repeat.