Imagine, if you will, Versailles and Winchester combined! Both castles have served as models for this ‘retirement home' of Wilhelm II of Düsseldorf which he never took advantage of.
Over the centuries, the palace has housed a military hospital, a school, and a refugee centre, before being converted into a luxury hotel in 2000. And what luxury, Everything is timelessly elegant, with loads of cream and gold under the soft light of crystal chandeliers. The 84 rooms and 36 suites are divided into five different universes, yet all have thick carpets, heavy drapes, and marble bathrooms. Enjoy the 1,000-square-metre spa, or have a dip in the pool before booking your table. The supreme asset of Schloss Bensberg is the Nouvelle German cuisine of chef Joachim Wissler at the starred restaurant Vendôme.
In 2015, he reached the number 30 spot on the list of the World's 50 Best Restaurants. At 16 kilometres from Cologne, the castle is well worth the detour for the food alone, even if you don't spend the night.
Althoff Grandhotel Schloss Bensberg
51 429 Bergisch Gladbach
+49 (0)220 4420
Rooms: from 200 EUR