Please take a little time for the history of our Hotel
The Chronicle of the Hotel Adler Post stretches back into the year 1725. It begins quite precisely with the “Golden Age” of Schwetzingen, which is closely connected with the name of the Elector Carl Theodor. Until the year 1778, his summer residence in Schwetzingen was a meeting place for the most prominent figures from the arts, sciences and politics.
The Inn “Zum Goldenen Adler” received its “authorization for public signpost and oven” — the birth certificate of a tavern — on the former Speyerer Strasse, today Dreikönigstrasse no. 4. In Schwetzingen there was construction underway, concerts, dancing: the Court moves in. A proper locality is created (1748) with streets and squares, with markets and state agencies. In the year 1759, it was granted “right to run a market.” The Rococo Theater was opened, and, under Elector Carl Theodor (1749–58), the Palace Gardens took on their design and shape still famous today. In 1763, Mozart as a seven-year-old boy played in the theater before the noble dignitaries. A proper locality is created (1748) with streets and squares, with markets and state agencies. In the year 1759, it was granted “right to run a market.” The Rococo Theater was opened, and, under Elector Carl Theodor (1749–58), the Palace Gardens took on their design and shape still famous today. In 1763, Mozart as a seven-year-old boy played in the theater before the noble dignitaries.
The purchase and exchange contract
On December 17 of this year, the Jesuits’ College concludes a sale- and barter agreement with the then owner of the “Goldener Adler”, J.M. Metz. The inn, which was in the vicinity of the Catholic St. Pancras Church, was exchanged for the Catholic schoolhouse at An der Pferdeschwemme, and thus it assumed its final location.
Turn of the century
The court glazier G. P. Metz, son of J.M. Metz and his wife Mrs. M. W. Bianchi become the owners of the “Goldener Adler”. Twelve years later the “Adler”-landlady, who was widowed in the meantime, married the court glazier and grocer F. Hübinger. Since that year the building’s name was shortened to the “Adler”. In 1803, parts of the Palatinate including Schwetzingen become part of Baden. At the start of the new century three personalities become connected with Schwetzingen:
Karl Friedrich Schimper (important scientist and nature researcher), regular guest at the “Adler”
Johann Michael Zeyher (horticultural director)
Johann Peter Hebel (poet, died and buried in1826 in Schwetzingen)
On July 12, 1817, Baron von Drais rode a proto-bicycle through Schwetzingen. In 1823, the Rococo Theater saw its final performance. In 1828 the Post opened a post office in the “Adler.”
The first ancestor
Our ancestor, the master ropemaker, Johann Andreas Ihm, took over the “Adler”, and at the same time the associated post office. The era of the Ihm family in the “Adler” begins. At that time the post carriages ride out of here, and they change their horses, for J.A. Ihm is postmaster and post equerry thanks to the favor the Grand Duke. Many have a pleasant drink at the post parlor while exchanging news from the world, which at that time was still a small world. Many foreigners came to Schwetzingen due to the Palace Garden, since by that time it had already built up a good reputation. The University of Heidelberg especially sends its students from elitist student associations to the former summer residence of the Heidelberg Elector. Here they drink as much as in the Heidelberg student bars… At this time Schwetzingen numbers roughly 3500 inhabitants, and J.A. Ihm belongs to the local council.
J.A. Ihm’s oldest son, Karl Ihm, purchases his parents’ property, however after five years he takes over the Inn “Zum Ochsen” (today “Hotel zum Erbprinzen”) and leaves — for a payment — the “Adler” to his younger brother Ernst Ihm I. Ernst Ihm is a master baker and supplies his hotel with fresh baked goods from a bakery on the premises. He had travelled far, an energetic and intelligent man. The Gründerzeit-years benefited him and his business. Successful businessmen and manufacturers from emerging Mannheim like to visit Schwetzingen and the “Adler”. In addition, the hops trade brings lots of money to the city. In the year 1865, the Schwetzingen agricultural economy finally adopts the asparagus trade. Im Jahre 1865 nimmt die Schwetzinger Landwirtschaft endgültig den Spargelanbau auf, nachdem nachgewiesenermaßen schon 1650 die ersten Spargel angepflanzt wurden. (It has been proven that the first asparagus were planted in 1650.) In 1870 Schwetzingen acquires its own train station. The first automobiles roll through the locality, the post carriages are abandoned, and the stables disappear.
Where the stables had been, Ernst Ihm I builds an addition to the “Adler”. From this era on, the Inn “zum Adler” is called “Hotel”. The wholesale asparagus buyers mostly stay here, and the travelling businessmen frequent the Hotel.
The next turn of the century
The son, Ernst Ihm II takes possession of the “Hotel Adler”. He has a personality full of ideals, honesty and is a hunter who obeys hunting regulations. He operates a small garden and supplies the hotel with flowers, fresh vegetables and fruit. His wife Anna Maria and her mother, grandmother Ries, are especially appreciated by the guests. Their cooking makes the “Adler” a distinct concept. Under their leadership, the hotel acquires a reputation for serving the best asparagus. Their recipe for the popular special asparagus pancake was still served in the past.
In the year 1897 the first telephone is installed in Schwetzingen, and the “Hotel Adler” is equipped with the fourth telephone connection of the locality. Schwetzingen now has 6,435 inhabitants.
In 1918, the palace and its garden become the property of the state of Baden.
The first half of the 20th century
Once again a son, Ernst Ihm III, takes over the “Adler”. He is likewise an enthusiastic hunter and gamekeeper, who supplies the kitchen of his hotel with fresh game. He is knowledgeable about wine and gourmet food, known as the Asparagus Professor, and loved and respected by his guests. His wife Lina works in the kitchen and takes care of the domestic economy. Under the direction of the couple, the hotel becomes famous not only regionally, but nationally. Electrical light, vapor heat, and running hot and cold water are installed, along with toilets, and baths on each floor.
After the early death of his wife Lina, Ernst Ihm III, together with his second wife Eleonore leads the hotel through the difficult wartime. After WWII, Schwetzingen has 10,890 inhabitants. In 1952, the Schwetzingen Festival begins in the Rococo Theater. During the festival season, many prominent people are to be found in Schwetzingen and at the “Adler”.
On June 12, 1953, at the initiative of daughter Marianne and her husband Hans Hubert Ruffler, the first guestbook begins to be kept. Also under her influence, the hotel’s name is changed to “Adler Post” in memory of the rich tradition of the post office, and a inn sign depicting an eagle (“Adler”) and a post horn is hung on the Hotel.
Ernst Ihm III. transfers the hotel to his daughter Marianne and her husband Hans Hubert Ruffler, trained hotel professionals (superior hotel school Heidelberg) — thus beginning once again a new period in the history of “Adler Post”. The old buildings facing the courtyard were taken down, along with one third of the main stretch of Schlossstrasse. The façade could not be modified, since it is under protection as a historical monument. This was, so to speak, a complete renovation and new beginning. The remodeling and addition creates new guestrooms, all with shower, WC, telephone and TV connection, as well as large basement facilities with a separate wine cellar, a hotel hall with open fireplace, meeting rooms and garages. The whole interior changes in appearance.
Hans Hubert Ruffler is a culinary specialist in body and soul, who was employed at leading hotels and contributes many new ideas to the “Adler”. He is a sociable and artistic person and always glad to be seen with his guests. His wife Marianne is the soul of the hotel, and she takes care of the work behind the scenes. The good reputation of the “Adler Post” continues to be built upon during this time. In the meantime, “asparagus — lilacs — festival” has become a concept. Celebrities from the business world, politics, art and sports stay at the “Adler Post” and are very comfortable there.
In agreement with the regional association, Badischen Heimat e.V., a newly designed room of the restaurant is christened “Schimper-Stube,” named after the well-know scientist K.F. Schimper.
The way into the new millennium
The Rufflers transfer to the sixth generation, their daughter Ursula and her husband Werner Höfer, the Hotel “Adler Post” along with the customary, five-generation-old desire to build: soon there is a new addition with suites and further guestrooms (including some that are wheelchair-accessible). The “Kurpfalz” parlor is enlarged and remodeled. For the restaurant and meeting rooms there are new toilet facilities. A garden terrace is set up.
In 1986, the rooms in the oldest part of the hotel are completely renovated and equipped with all comforts. The guestrooms from the 1964 addition are likewise renovated and brought to the state of the art. In the following year, a sauna is installed for hotel guests. In 1987, our Hotel is accepted into the worldwide association Chaîne des Rôttiseurs, a great distinction for the restaurant and its culinary achievement.
In 1990, “Adler Post” celebrates its 150th anniversary. In 1992, the kitchen is equipped with a new oven system. In 1997, the kitchen is renovated once again and equipped with contemporary, top-quality kitchen technology. In the same year, the heating system is renovated and converted from oil to environmentally friendly gas. The last renovation to date took place in 1998, when the whole restaurant was subject to a rejuvenating treatment while conserving the style of the “Adler Post”.
In 2000, “Adler Post” sets up its own first hompage on the internet. Timo, the son of the Höfers, belives that it is time to present the “Adler Post” on internet, and he sets to work himself.
In agreement with the regional association, Badische Heimat e.V., a room of the restaurant is christened the “Zeyher Parlor”, after the former Schwetzingen horticultural director Johann Michael Zeyher. Schwetzingen, in the meantime a large district seat, is a charming city with all necessary cultural and business facilities. An important festival city, a city of the Muses and of sociability, with spirit and harmony, counting more than 23,000 inhabitants.
The seventh generation, Tessa Höfer, has successfully concluded her education. After her training as hotel specialist at Brenner’s Parkhotel in Baden-Baden with its rich tradition, she completed a degree program as graduate hotel manager at the University of Ravensburg in connection with the famous Excelsior Hotel Ernst of Cologne. After two years of activity in Zürich at The Dolder Grand as Banquet Administration Manager, and a total of nine years of travels, she has now been in Schwetzingen since January 2010, and she contributes with her professional experience as manager to Adler Post in her home town.
Since August 2010, she continues to manage our hotel as Hotel Garni *** Superior. Since then the breakfast room as well as the lobby have been renovated, all floor covers have been renewed. There were build two new junior suites, barrier-poor, wheelchair accessible, suitable for allergy sufferers and with terrace access. In 2019 we renovated 13 single rooms and one double, since then all rooms as well as the public area has air condition. A centrally controlled fire alarm system was also installed. At the beginning of 2020, 2 double rooms were completely renovated and 4 more bathrooms were completely renovated. Now there are 4 wheelchair accessible rooms on the first floor.