Renovation Overdue: Hotel Bad Schachen, Lindau
Just to say it at the very first moment. This is a mystery check, and we stayed at the hotel for private purposes. However, they knew our names at check-in. Anyways they couldn‘t have cared less. Every luxury traveller heading to the beautiful Lake Constance knows it: Bad Schachen is the grand dame of the hospitality on the pretty alpine lake. At least it used to be a few years ago. Nowadays, competition is intense, and hotels such as the Riva in Konstanz or the Villino above the Bad Schachen are trying their best to gain more luxury travellers. One of the first things Bad Schachen doesn‘t. Another one: the average age of the audience lies somewhere around 70 years. And that is nothing wrong, the contrary is the case, it‘s great that senior travellers exist and enjoy the grandezza of such an elegant historical hotel. However, an excellent hotel should have a healthy mix of guests and target groups because we all know that we don‘t live forever. With that audience with increasing age and less young guests, Bad Schachen won‘t be forever neither.
So how come such a hotel does have such troubles? Well, first of all, the hotel lacks a long-overdue renovation that should have been done somewhere in 2009 already. With sky-high rates of 300 euros a night for actual „driver‘s rooms“ that are so small that you can‘t even turn around, this hotel is real hospitality fail. And please let me say one thing: Don‘t even dare not to pay the surcharge for the lake view, because they never give upgrades and the rooms to the back are even worse I was told. We all are not sure if it ever was fashionable to sell rooms with a size of not even 20 square meters under the roof, where only a third of the room has standard heights. Not even speaking of our bathroom that was nothing but a really bad joke. Whenever I tried to take a shower, I had to face gymnastic challenges to get my hair anywhere close to the showerhead (which was way too low). Needless to say that the bathroom floor was flooded every time. In the end, we all took a shower in the newly renovated wellness area. This area is actually the only spot in the entire hotel that has been touched in ages.
To be honest with this review, Bad Schachen still has a few USPs that make this property still leading on the lake. For instance, there is the famous beach club with vast outdoor pool, lounge chairs and direct access to the chilly lake. All of the facilities at the beach club are in perfect condition, and it has a very unique nostalgic feeling that makes it so genuinely spectacular. They even provide a beach bag with towels for your time at the club facilities that hotel guests can enjoy for free. I mean also the location of the hotel is stunning with impressive vistas of Lindau and Bregenz with the Austrian Alps in the back. If only the service would have any kind of training or be taught better. Breakfast itself isn‘t the highlight. Even though you can sit on the terrace overlooking the sea and enjoying local products of good quality, service isn‘t here or at least not very friendly. You have to look for a server to order coffee actively. With such high prices, I simply assume that Bad Schachen pays the staff well enough to find properly trained people (which is not the case apparently). I am curious how long this money-driven philosophy is successful. It‘s really a shame to see such a grand hotel with such an immense opportunity going down the gutter. If they don‘t solve their internal ownership problems soon (the reason why they didn‘t continue the renovation), they will miss out their last opportunity to get back on track.