History of Blaue Gams Ettal
Then & now

– In the beginning there was Ettal Abbey

Nobody knows when the story of the Blaue Gams actually began. In any case, the house was owned by Ettal Abbey until it was secularised in 1803 when it was used as a carpentry workshop. The records state: “Lying up on the castle hill, with masonry walls, the roof is covered with tiles. It is 100 shoes in length, has a width of 44 shoes and a height of 10 shoes. Contained therein is a heatable large room, two smaller rooms and 4 chambers. There is a kitchen containing 4 additional ovens and 2 fireplaces. Estimated value 200 fl.”

Andreas Stickl, a long-standing employee of the abbey, bought the premises from the monastery in 1803. The “Bichlbauer” remained within the family for many years.

In 1906, the farmhouse was returned to the abbey’s ownership: the Benedictine Abbey in Scheyern, who divested it to Ettal Abbey in 1916. The latter housed Russian and Polish prisoners of war there as abbey workers during the First World War.

Constantin von Reichenbach, an innkeeper and timber merchant from Munich, was on the scene between 1920 and 1936, founding the café and tavern “Blaues Gams”. During this time, the most prominent visitor to the hotel was Thomas Mann, who often liked to come up here during his winter holiday in Ettal. He enjoyed the spectacular views and especially the hot chocolate with whipped cream and cakes. He made Ettal Abbey a literary monument in his “Doktor Faustus” novel.

Between 1936 and 1962, the “Blaue Gams” was a family home for its new owners, the Freiherr von Twickel family, until they moved to England.

The tradition of accommodating guests began in 1962. Guest rooms were rented out to travellers for the first time under the name of “Luisenhof” guest house.

In 1980, the “Blaue Gams” tavern was run in the tenants’ hotel.

In 1985, the Bartl family took it over and the “Blaue Gams” was given its present day appearance with the new construction on the east side built in 1989.

In 2013, the Bedelev family obtained the hotel and restaurant “Blaue Gams” and carried out extensive repair and modernisation works.

The spacious spa landscape was created in 2015 with a Finnish sauna, steamroom and the outside ground sauna.

The Bedelev family refurbished the rooms in the “old inn” of Blaue Gams between 2019 and May 2020.