berge – the mountains guesthouse

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berge – the mountains guesthouse

Good Design as a Natural Law

What are your expectations for an upscale guesthouse? A reception counter, Wi-Fi, TV and a hotel restaurant? Then you are in the wrong place at berge – the mountains guesthouse in Aschau in the Bavarian Chiemgau. Instead, what awaits you are the luxuries of reduction, simplicity and innovation. The stamp of designer and furniture manufacturer, Nils Holger Moormann, is unmistakable. With his guesthouse, he has created a special place that is sustainably built and has a natural, archaic aesthetic. The furniture of his company, Nils Holger Moormann Möbel GmbH, can also be found here.

Consistent reduction as the basis for success

Leaving out or taking away is the basis on which everything in the guesthouse is built. When Moormann acquired the 350-year-old building in 2005, he intended to use it as a warehouse for his furniture production. He quickly realised that this was the wrong plan for the house.

It was only when he, together with the craftsman Larry Weiss, dismantled all the installations and conversions made in the past that the building revealed its personality to him – and the idea for the guest house became obvious.

With product designer Emmy Galle, Moormann built 14 very individual flats into the thick walls of the boxy building. What they all have in common is a design that is reduced to the essentials and allows the character of the house to be experienced. The coloured clay-earth wall surfaces, selected for healthful living, also contribute to this.

Two further flats in small wooden huts in the garden complete the selection of accommodations. Choose the rooms that is just right for your holiday.

Simplicity as a generator for development

Clay earth is an essential component of the design concept. It has the implicitness that characterises good design – and is the law of nature.

The natural building material has been used worldwide for thousands of years for the construction and design of buildings. In the past, it was used as a matter of course because earthen clay was locally available and had proven itself incontrovertibly. Today we call it structurally sound and sustainable.

The implicit nature of the selection of clay earth should not be confused with using something because “it has always been done this way”. Elegance in design comes from recognising what is important and then innovating into the future. Thus, in addition to earthen-clay plaster, modern clayboards for drywall construction were used in the finishing of the rooms.

This attitude is also apparent in the accommodation concept: a flat with a small kitchenette instead of a double room and a hotel restaurant. Key box instead of a reception counter. Mountain view instead of television. Being present instead of World Wide Web.

You will not miss all those expectations you might have had. Rather, the natural simplicity gives you the chance to discover new perspectives and take away new thoughts about living and furnishings.

Photos 8 & 10 ©Nils Holger Moormann

Photos 3, 6, 7 & 9 ©Julia Rotter

Photo 1 ©Jaeger & Jaeger

Photos 2, 4, 5 & 11 ©We Make Them Wonder

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Clay Highlight:

Innovative clay building products from Claytec as a building material for new interior design

Over the past centuries, the thick walls of today’s berge guesthouse have accommodated a wide variety of uses. For the installation of the 14 flats, designer and owner Nils Holger Moormann hardly changed the original room floor plans. With a great deal of creativity, he succeeded in transforming each room into an individual retreat.

Well-thought-out fixtures made of wood, galleries and the FNP shelf – a Nils Holger Moormann Möbel GmbH design – divide the rooms and make optimal use of the available space. New interior walls were constructed using drywall clayboards.

The wall surfaces are partly left as exposed brickwork. Where they are plastered, Clay Topcoat Fine 06 plaster was used. The colourful design in brown tones and with Claytec pure white underlines the reduction and harmonises perfectly with the other carefully selected materials.


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