Hamburg is less than half an hour away, but here you are in a different world. Jagdhaus Waldfrieden, a century-old villa built by a shipping magnate in traditional hunting-lodge style with steeply pitched roofs and mini-turrets, is set in a beautiful little park, its mature trees able to screen out most of the noise of the main B4 road nearby. It is the setting that really makes the place, but Sigmund Baierle is a highly experienced manager of bigger hotels who makes sure that his own small-but-growing enterprise is up to scratch in all respects.
The few bedrooms in the original house are comfortable in an old-fashioned but not particularly atmospheric way. We preferred the more numerous ones added in a brand new building in 1990: they are not conspicuously modern, and have the attraction of very smart bathrooms. There are several places where you can sit and relax, including a fascinating dining-room with minstrel’s gallery, baby grand and hunting trophies. You can also eat in the newly created conservatory (used for breakfast) or at tables under trees in the garden when the weather permits. Cooking is quite ambitious, service impressively helpful.