Hotel Heinrich Heine
Located in Schierke, Sachsen-Anhalt Germany
Photo © 2009 Tom Kirsch, opacity.us
Hotel Heinrich Heine History
Built in 1898-1900, this luxury hotel was originally named Hotel Fürst zu Stolberg (Prince of Stolberg Hotel), after Prince Otto of Stolberg-Wernigerode (1837-1896). A number of important political figures have stayed here over the years, including Paul von Hindenburg (second president of Germany from 1925-1934), Wilhelm Pieck (president of East Germany, 1949-1960) and Juliana of the Netherlands. The ornate terraced central tower was completely enclosed sometime circa 1920. After the second World War in 1945, the hotel's name was changed to Hotel Heinrich Heine. Russian officers were reported to have lived quite extravagantly in the complex for some time; the hotel was subsequently operated by the Reisebüro der DDR (Travel Bureau of the GDR - all tourism in East Germany was controlled by the government).
Due to its proximity to the East/West German border, the hotel could only be visited by permit, and all guests had to wear ID tags at all times - however the Heinrich Heine continued to be quite popular, and rooms were often sold out, typically by government officials and wealthy businessmen. Rumors were occasionally whispered of lavish secret parties, held at Heine's night club Dachsbau (Brockhouse).
After the reunification of Germany in 1990, the high-class guests, as well as the GDR parent company's funds, vanished into thin air. The resort limped through the next few years operating as a Travel Hotel until 1995, when it was finally closed for good. The property was purchased by an anonymous bidder in Berlin for 43,000€ in 2007, however the buildings remained neglected. They were eventually razed in 2016.