The SANDWIRTH is one of the most historic houses and hotels in the state capital Klagenfurt. Its continuation as a modern and contemporary hotel operation requires a future-oriented leadership with a sense of tradition. The personal history of the owners, the Kanduth family, is closely linked to this, in fact even found its beginning there.
HOSPITALITY WITH HISTORY
The year is 1735. Franz Anton Rohr of Rohrau buys the house at the bastion next to the Villach Gate and first establishes an inn.
The good location and a fine drop of wine animate the citizens of Klagenfurt from the beginning to stop by. After the Sunday walks they let the evening fade away in the gardens or in the bar of the so-called Rohrerbastei. The succesful restaurateur also becomes the Klagenfurt mayor in the years of 1760, 1762 and 1766. An inventory in the year of his death proves how popular his inn really was: 4.500 liters of Styrian and Welscher wine are in stock.
The restaurant at the bastion persists. Jakob Ulbing buys the house no. 317 Fürstengasse on 7 november 1813 and named it „at Sandwirth“.
The first ad of the Sandwirth can be found in the Official Journal of Klagenfurt newspaper in occasion of the opening of the railway line:
„Saturday, 2nd May 1868 Garden and salon opening ‚at Sandwirth‘, combined with great Soirée, executed by the regimental band Freiherr von John. Starting 7 o´clock in the evening – Entrance 15 kr.. The undersigned will endeavor to comply with the wishes of the honored PT audience offering delicious food and drinks. At the same time, he permits himself to raise awareness of the various wines like: Austrian Table wine per litre 50 kr., Austrian Bouteillen wine per bottle 40 kr. upwards, excellent Türkenberger per litre 56 kr., Mahrwein and Schilcher per litre at 48 kr. Kindly asking for numerous attendance – Theodor Meister.“
On 1 December 1899, the young innkeeper couple Joseph and Franziska Jamek take over the Sandwirth realities for the price of 100,000 guilders. The already popular dance hall for 120 people is demolished then to cater to up to a thousand guests. In 1907, the banquet hall is solemnly opened after two years of construction. From now on, military concerts, banquets of the Klagenfurt garrison, singer and costume parties, club meetings, and almost all of the society balls take place in the Sandwirth halls. The Heringsschmaus on Ash Wednesday becomes a tradition under the leadership of the Jameks.
But the success story also has its downsides. In 1913 , the ceiling of the great hall crashes down due to a fault in construction. Blessing in disguise - the day before the Bosniakenkapelle had performed in the garden and Mr. Jamek had refused to open the great hall for the 100 guests. Even after the outbreak of the First World War people dance and celebrate at the Sandwirth. Festively dressed people get out of carriages and automobiles. One enjoys a festive dinner, accompanied by a concert at the beginning, before the dance floor is opened. Until the great bombing raid on 16 January 1944, the Sandwirth halls remain open. It was not until the British occupation and other adverse circumstances that conversion is required. Over 100 years the hotel remains under the ownership of the Jamek family.
In the new millennium Robert Kanduth takes over the SANDWIRTH and converts it into a business hotel in 2002. In 2005 and 2008 extension work follows. Since then, the house with its 100 rooms and 700m2 of meeting space has been the largest house in the centre of Klagenfurt .
One year after the acquisition, on 8 April 2003 Robert Kanduth met his wife Helvig and certainly invited her to the SANDWIRTH. In the literature lounge words finally became great feelings and love at first sight. The SANDWIRTH had a family! Helvig Kanduth, a graduate in business administration, has been running the business since 2008.