THE ACCIDENTAL HOTELIER

Blog: How I became a guesthouse hotelier

I first visited the most beautiful place in the world in 1980s, today I run its only hotel.

OsturňaOsturňa (Source: Thom Kolton)
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I live in the most beautiful place in the world. This is not hyperbole; I truly believe it. When I first set eyes on the village in the late 1980’s, while Czechoslovakia was still under Communist rule and foreign tourists remained a novelty, I was amazed by the simple wooden structures and the picturesque scenery that I thought could only exist in a painting. But there I was, walking the very same road that my grandparents had walked nearly a century earlier.

To get a broader view, I climbed the hill behind the church as high as I could, where the hills on the other side of the valley give way to the Belianske Tatras and the High Tatras beyond. As I sat on the ground surrounded by yellow and purple spring flowers with views of the Tatra Mountains and the winding village below, I was overwhelmed. “Babka,” I wondered, “why did you never tell us how beautiful Osturňa was?”

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