Snow on the Feldberg Taunus Mountain in March

Photo credits for this beautiful image go to Gregor Maier, who works at the Kultur und Geschichte des Hochtaunuskreises, and spends some of his free time exploring our local high lights for us couch potatoes.

The photo was taken on 14 March at the Feldberg Mountain.

Unfortunately, I had no chance to go up there myself at all this past winter, which was mostly due to blocked roads. Or some other excuse.

Film Setting For ‘Spencer’ at Schlosshotel Kronberg, Germany

The Schlosshotel Kronberg will provide the setting for an American production of ‘Spencer’, a drama featuring Lady Di’s life.

The Schlosshotel has been chosen to represent Lady Di’s real birthplace, the country estate of Sandringham in Norfolk, where she was born on 1 July 1961. Princess Di herself reputedly has never been to the Schlosshotel herself.

Some historical facts about the hotel:

German Empress Victoria (German title: Victoria Kaiserin Friedrich), a daughter of the English Queen Victoria, purchased the Villa Schönbusch from a business man named Jacques Reiss in 1888. This was also the year her husband, Emporer Friedrich III, died.

She then had Friedrichshof Castle built in its place, and she used it as her summer residence from 1894 until her death in 1901.

Schloss Friedrichshof in Cronberg i. Taunus

Note the spelling of Cronberg in the left-hand corner of the postcard. This was the official spelling before it became Kronberg in November 1929.

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After her death, the castle went to her youngest daughter, Margaret of Prussia (German title: Prinzessin Margarethe von Preußen).

After WWII, the castle was confiscated by U.S. occupation forces, and used as Officers’ Club.

In 1954, the castle became a luxury hotel, convention center, and a special place to receive and host VIPs, such as the Dalai Lama in 2017.

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Princess Di is played by the actress Kristen Stewart. The Hessian Film Funding Group will support the movie making with €250,000.

The movie’s release is planned for early 2022.

Sledding on the Mountain Lodge Hill in Oberursel, Germany

The last time we saw children sledding on the Mountain Lodge Hill in Oberursel must have been ten years ago.

If you are new the area, and need directions: This hill is in the housing area called Camp King, behind the EDEKA supermarket on Hohemarkstrasse, and in fairly close proximity to Frankfurt International School (FIS).

Oberursel, Germany

Elvis Presley Left His Mark in Friedberg, Germany

Most people of my generation do remember that the rock, country, and gospel icon Elvis Presley was once stationed with the U.S. army in Germany. The town itself was Friedberg, and he lived at Ray Barracks. Later on, he would move to Bad Nauheim.

Gernot, a friend of mine, gave me his friendly permission to share this photo, which shows the Elvis Presley Square in Friedberg. From there, it is only 1.3km to Ray Barracks, and 4.2km to Bad Nauheim (his later residence).

Elvis-Presley-Platz in Friedberg, Hessen

For more details and photos of Friedberg, Nauheim and Elvis’s time in Germany, you might want to visit: German Way. Recommendable.

Jewish Ritual Bath in Friedberg, Hesse

The mikvah or mikveh is a bath used for ritual immersion in Judaism to achieve ritual purity. This one in Friedberg, Hesse, belongs to a small group of remaining monumental mikvahs dating back to the Middle Ages. The others are in Friedberg, Speyer, Cologne, Worms, Offenburg, and Andernach.

With a depth of 25 m, the mikvah in Friedberg is the biggest and most impressive among them all. It is also one of the last monuments of Jewish life in Friedberg. From the 13th century until 1942, the Jewish population lived in and near the Judengasse (between the town and the castle). Their synagogue was burned down on 10 November 1938.

We went to see the mikvah this afternoon. We were the only visitors on this snowy afternoon, so the museum attendant told us.

What an experience this was to be inside this mikvah! While we were talking, we noticed the extraordinary acoustics – any sound resonated for about six seconds within the walls.

The octagonal skylight, which we passed on the way in, was reflected in the waters down below. Then, our sound was reflected in the walls. This was truly amazing.

The last part of the stairway is closed off to the public though. Climbing down 23 regular steps and another 52 steep steps requires a sure foothold and sturdy shoes.

The entrance is euro 2 per adult. Hours of operation: wetterau-museum

This was definitely a cultural and historical highlight.

 

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