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Rainersaenger Stille Nacht Posthotel

200 years of ‘Silent Night’: what links Lake Achensee and the Posthotel with Ludwig Rainer

It’s as much as part of Christmas as Christmas trees,  cookies and candles on the Advent wreath: ‘Silent Night, Holy Night’ is a classic amongst Christmas songs. The song will turn 200 years old this year. What few people know: There is a fascinating connection between Tirol’s most famous national singer Ludwig Rainer and the beautiful Lake Achensee in Tirol!

Ludwig Rainer – Tirol’s most famous national singer

Ludwig Rainer was born in 1821 in Fügen in the Zillertal valley into the well-known Rainer family of singers. At the tender age of 18, he formed his own singing troupe which ‘toured’ as the first Tirolean group singing traditional folk songs. They travelled around the world playing concerts in Europe, America and Asia, which never got old. The most famous of all the songs was the Christmas song ‘Silent Night, Holy Night’ which we all love to sing year after year, and Ludwig Rainer played a significant part in spreading this song around the world.

This year – the same year in which the 5* Posthotel is celebrating a major anniversary – the song will turn 200 years old! Our adults-only resort is not the only place that will be commemorating the singer and this popular song: until the end of October, the Sixenhof Museum of Local History in the Achental valley will present its own special exhibition dedicated to Ludwig Rainer, who died at the age of 71 in Kreuth near Lake Tegernsee and whose burial place is situated in Achenkirch, close to the Posthotel.

Arrival at Lake Achensee

After travelling the world for many years, Ludwig Rainer returned to his homeland of Tirol. In around 1870, he ordered the construction of the Hotel Seehof on Lake Achensee as well as the idyllic Seehofkapelle lake chapel, situated around a one-hour walk from the Posthotel Achenkirch. In this way, Tirol’s most famous advocate of nature and national singing tradition not only brought musicians and composers to Tirol’s largest lake, but also poets, painters and other important people of his time.

Seehofkapelle Achensee
The Seehofkapelle by Lake Achensee - small, exquisite and historic.

Unique to the Posthotel Achenkirch, our cosy Rainer-Stube lounge and famous Rainerbrunnen fountain – also known as the Rainer-Bründl – commemorates Ludwig and his group members. This year will be a particularly special commemoration of the musician and his achievements since 200 years is a remarkable amount of time! A lot has happened since the song first came about…this popular Christmas song is now sung in around 300 languages and dialects – let’s lift our hats and raise a glass!

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