During some days during the summer of 2012 we visited the awesome small town of Binz (situated at Germany’s largest island - Rügen - at the coastline of the Baltic Sea. After the Second World War until 1989, this area belonged to the DDR (East Germany), and was closed to tourists.
We live in Sweden, and the journey to Rügen is very uncomplicated and pleasant. The boat trip takes only four hours from the Swedish city Trelleborg onboard one of the modern ferries of the ScandLine. We then arrived at Sassnitz... about only 10 kilometers drive from Binz.
This was our very first visit to Rügen and to Binz, and we didn’t have many expectations at all. However, we had seen some pictures, and had read some information from tourist catalogues and at the internet. It all looked very small-scale and romantic.
When we arrived to the municipality of Binz, we were nevertheless a bit surprised (and actually a bit “disappointed”) that the town seemed to be so big…mostly due to the heavy numbers of cars.
It seemed to be very problematic to find a free parking lot (and later we learned that, if you find a free space to park, you have to pay all 24 hours a day).
However, after finally reaching the Villa Salve (thanks a lot to the GPS in our Volvo car), we got help/instruction from one of the employees at the hotel, and parked the car in the basement below the hotel building. Actually, we had reserved the place in advance. Note! The cost for the parking was rather expensive: € 12:-/night, I believe it was.
The reception desk is, as another TA-contributor described it, “hidden” in a corridor at the back side of the hotel building. The walls in this area are decorated with a lot of photos…displaying more or less famous Germans - and some international - guests.
I noticed that among the pictures some were showing the Norwegian royal crown-prince-couple; HRH Haakon Magnus and HRH Mette Marit when having lunch here at the Villa Salve’s restaurant together with the current German prime minister Angela Merkel. Even ex-prime ministers of Germany, Helmut Kohl, were at some other photos, visiting the restaurant as well.
The check-in procedure was anyway quite impersonal and didn’t make us feel warmly welcome. The receptionist called for a young man (employed as a waiter), who - after guiding us and our car to the parking basement - accompanied us to our room at the top floor (second floor) of the Villa Salve. The stairs are very upwards and quite narrow, and due to suffering from severe back pain (!) I had to struggle a lot with my suitcase. The young man, who followed us, didn’t once offer his help.
The Villa Salve is very nicely situated next to the impressive boardwalk and the great beaches! The area is so beautiful. Everything in the community seems to be so well managed. Most of the buildings are from the turn of the century (the period around year 1900), very nicely build, renovated and preserved! The all-through color is white. The long pier is even great.
We’ve not seen this kind of constant great environment elsewhere (and we have been travelling a lot) – it is entirely awesome!
During our stay we rented bicycles and explored the areas along the coastlines. We visited small towns as Sellin, Göhren, Lauterbach and Putbus. All of them really nice places.
We used to bike the one way, and to take the exciting train “Rasender Roland”, built from year 1895 and forwards, back to Binz. A perfect combination when biking the one way, and bringing the bikes onboard the train the other way.
You should not miss Prora, the place north of Binz where Hitler (!) planned, and during the 1930’s started to build, the enormously large vacation centre for the “aryan” German population (20.000 people should be here at the same time). A crazy plaze!
We even stayed a couple of days (after our visit to Binz) in the city Stralsund; a fantastically well preserved and renovated city from the medieval “Hansa” time!
The Villa Salve’s geographical location at the boardwalk, next to the great beach, was fantastic. And we were very satisfied with the great breakfast with a wide range of selections, having the option to sit outside looking through the trees enjoying the breathtaking view of the beach and the sea.
We had a well-tasting dinner as well one evening, outside at the terrace, listing to an artist performing at the stairs to the hotel.
We really loved Ostseebad Binz, and we are going to come back!
However, we will not return to Hotel Villa Salve.
We experienced a lack of genuine kindness and caring. For example, when arriving to the breakfast every morning, nobody of the employees lifted their heads and said “Gute Morgen”. Off course we were ordinary paying guests only…however, the employees didn’t once tried to make us feel special, comfortable or appreciated. When passing the small reception desk, the person working there very rarely raised her head to look at us and say “Hallo”.
I got the feeling that the place was ruled by revenue thinking only…not severely being aware of the fact that all the guests are “ambassadors” who are going to remember their stay as pleasant or not.
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- Also Known As:
- Villa Salve Germany/Rugen Island - Ostseebad Binz