About the project
In South Tyrol, Saltaus, Apfelhotel’s the new design and architecture evokes the vintage charm of this historical hotel while creating an oasis for the senses. The Torgglerhof lies at the mouth of the Passeier Valley. Its roots run deep in classic apple cultivation culture. Over time, it became a spot for people wanting to linger, connect, and soak up the scenic views. It’s here that the Apfelhotel (Applehotel) was built.
Design firm noa* took on the expansion of this project in 2014, which was implemented in several stages. In 2016, the main building with the restaurant as well as the old barn were dismantled. The Apfelsauna (eng. Applesauna) was completed as the first feature of a spacious wellness and relaxation landscape, which has now been expanded. In 2020, 18 new suites were built for guests and carefully designed to fit into the farmyard’s landscape structure while complementing the rural surroundings. As the central masterpiece of this rural development, noa* designed a wellness area with architecture and greenery that resembled a modern lush garden.
The wellness facility has no Northside facade. It blends into a natural green slope so that the building can hardly be seen. The entrance to the new spa is a curved, semi-exposed concrete shell that tucks into the landscape. The entire structure is covered with a layer of earth and plants, designed to blend naturally into the bottom of the hill and thus merge into the landscape. The spa boasts a central drinking fountain made from natural stone and an open fireplace in a spacious lounge area, which leads onto the showers, changing rooms, and beauty and massage rooms. The pool stretches outdoors through the overgrown green façade, and is partially framed with Lucerne metamorphic gneiss rock. The framing dissolves where the water edge meets the surrounding open space to visually connect with the landscape in an infinity edge.
The upper floor features a sauna lounge, relaxation room, a Finnish sauna and steam bath, and an adjacent terrace where guests can refresh with an outdoor shower. The Finnish sauna is a dream for the senses, with its horizontally curved wooden slats and generous glazed windows offering scenic views of the apple fields. The Apfelsauna in the garden can be reached via a curved open staircase, which is flanked by the exposed concrete shell.
With a total of 18 guest rooms in three independent buildings, the outer shell of these structures has been kept dark in an ode to the traditional character of a barn house. The suites on the ground floor blend into the topography. Nature and the characteristics of the region play an important role in the interior design. Wood cladding, milling, and coarse natural fibres are used throughout the entire interior.
The concept of the restaurant is based on a modern winter garden. The open space is divided by loose old-styled cupboards and floor-to-ceiling permeable shelves. These shelves function as a transparent room divider, a presentation area for the hotel’s self-made products and as a library stocked with literature on culinary arts. Guests are invited to tuck into treats displayed on an old planning bench.
The entire Apfelhotel project reflects the nature and passion of its family owners, whose aim is to make people feel truly at home, rather than like a hotel guest.