Sophienhöhe: „Campus Natura“
A Special place of energy with a climate-neutral hotel complex
Programm 2020 - 2025
The Villa Sophienhöhe, a monument from the late Wilhelminian era, was built and completed in the hamlet of “Sophienhöhe” in 1898/1899. A hundred years later, the villa property was developed into an internationally recognized hotel and business center. Today, specialist conferences of all kinds enrich the hotel complex and thus demonstrate the importance of the strategically well-located location. The villa has beautiful rooms with its ambience for family celebrations, especially weddings. The kitchen in the house stands for a healthy diet and relies on a basic diet with fresh products from the region. The special gastronomic and culinary offering is to be further developed into a trademark. This includes the hotel's own organic products such as fruit juices and honey.
The villa was rated as a four-star hotel by the German Hotel and Restaurant Association (DEHOGA).
Based on the previous activities, the Sophienhöhe is to be conceptually expanded as an international business center in the ABCD city quadrangle of Aachen, Bonn, Cologne -Düsseldorf and will further gain in charisma and appeal with many unique selling points.
The hotel philosophy: well-being in a place of energy
After 20 years of hotel operation, a further development push has to take place. The hotel's own “Sophienhöhe” philosophy is emphasized. One can sell hotel rooms, gain customers and run the business. We want more. Our goal is that
“Campus Natura”, a “regenerative place of energy” with a “self-healing code”.
The Campus Natura is to be developed into a place where mind and body can become one, where lust for life and joy of life can be combined and where a health and fitness program stands for new drive.
Expansion of the available space
The further development of Sophienhöhe into a nature and health park will be closely linked to the expansion of hoel room and conference capacities. Construction of a seminar center will begin this year. This includes expanding hotel accommodations. The existing 24 hotel rooms are to be expanded by a further 18, bringing the total to 42 rooms, and furnished in a timely manner.
Further expansion of the hotel area
The hotel grounds previously covered an area of approximately 34,000 m². Through further acquisitions, the area was expanded to approx. 60,000 m² (6 hectares). The area consists of a high forest as well as orchards and pastures. These areas should be conceptually brought into harmony with nature conservation and with many experiences for our guests. By activating the forest structures and maintaining the fruit and meadow crops, the natural area is to be developed into a nature campus. The integration into regional programs, such as the renaturation of the landscape along the Nephelbach, is included.
“Sophie the Bee”
We enrich the offer with a bee protection program. With the “Sophie the Bee” label we associate our contribution to species conservation. The bee protection program finds its basis in connecting with the orchards and flower meadows.
Note: The “bee concept” is referenced elsewhere.
“Sophie the Bee” should become the symbol of Campus Natura. We chose the hard-working insect because it teaches us how important the insect is to human preservation.
The bee area will be integrated into supra-regional planning. Together with the city and monastery beekeeping company Weirich (Cologne) and one of the largest European breeding associations, a “breeding station” is being set up on Sophienhöhe, in which breeding cultures will be part of scientific research. There is no such research station in the Rhineland yet. It will make a significant contribution to the preservation of extinct species and help beekeepers in the Rhineland with their populations.
In addition, a mobile “teaching bee house” will be part of the offer, in which has teaching content for those interested and conferences will be possible for specialists.
Part of the overall concept will be an “apitherapy station”. This will be about inhaling bee air as a contribution to the health of the respiratory tract.
Observations of nature
The offers for landscape, forest and animal observation are intended to challenge the guests and give them the opportunity to pause and linger. Through outdoor seating in the natural landscape, guests should be able to experience nature and find themselves. With an in-house video network, our guests are introduced to the natural environment in a variety of ways right into their own hotel rooms.
The forest should be made into a place of power with a spiritual feeling. Offers such as forest bathing, forest running and forest sauna should be offered
Note: The forest concept is referenced elsewhere.
Guests appreciate the natural location of Villa Sophienhöhe. You can enjoy the peace and quiet at night. Additional offers are intended to create opportunities for healthy sleeping. Therapeutic concepts are offered that are entirely geared towards healing sleep. These offers are accompanied by a sleep doctor.
The special sleeping experience on the Sophienhöhe should become another trademark of the hotel. This includes the appropriate expansion and carefully selected furniture of the hotel rooms, which improves your sleep. This spatial concept is linked to personal self-discovery through the mobilization of the body's own forces.
Note: The “Healthy Sleeping” concept is in progress.
In addition to a wide range of fitness offers for our guests who are stressed through everyday life, medical and technical offers will be an integral part of the program. Firstly, it involves activating the breathing air with the help of “airnergy” breathing stations and magnetic field therapy by using an “impuls 7 station”. In addition, a variety of fitness options are offered by an educational institution for pre-clinical professions. We work with contractual partners on this package.
On the forest and meadow grounds of the Sophienhöhe, there are opportunities for physical relaxation in the great outdoors. As an example, a bowl facility and a course for physical movements will be created. Hiking and walking in the Nephelbachaue as well as cycling in the Börden landscape are supported by the sports and exercise councils.
The gastronomic offering in the culinary area and in the tavern relies on fresh products. The customer should be pleased with home-style cuisine. We want to achieve this with alkaline kitchen products.
Note: The “Healthy nutrition” concept is in development.
In the basement of the villa, a Roman tavern, the Enotheka, will be included in the restaurant's culinary offers. Based on the historic Roman road from Neuss to Zülpich (B 477 - Heerstraße), on which wine has long been cultivated along the Nephelbach, a place for wine cultures combined with Mediterranean food is to be created on the Sophienhöhe. The focus is on a sense of enjoyment and harmony.
Note: The tavern with a historical reference is referenced elsewhere.
The structural extensions on the Sophienhöhe will be linked to an educational offer. The natural location of the Campus Natura offers good conditions for this. National and international conferences are expected at Sophienhöhe with scientifically oriented and health-promoting projects as well as offers for the body's own regeneration.
Note: The health concept is in progress.
Climate neutral hotel: "The trees control our climate"
The hotel complex and its extensive grounds are already contributing to a positive climate balance. The natural climate-friendly process takes place with over 100 oaks, beeches and many other tree species. Many trees are well over 100 years old and demonstrate their age through their thick trunks. The oldest tree is an oak tree with a circumference of 1 m and a height of 4.10 meters. Our trees are:
Oxygen producers - A 100-year-old oak tree produces 3.2 million liters of oxygen per year.
Polutant filter - A 100-year-old tree clears the atmosphere of around a ton of dust per year.
Co2 storage - For every kilogram of wood, around two kilograms of CO² are removed from the atmosphere.
Shade provider - The sunlight is reduced on the forest floor. The forest stays cool on warm days.
Water storage - The forest floor acts like a sponge. Up to 200 liters of water can be stored beneath the surface in one square meter.
Water filter - In a beech and oak forest, half of the water seeps into the groundwater and is cleaned there. And filtered water evaporates through the leaves.
Storm breaks - Wind is the kinetic energy that is absorbed by the trees through their vibrations. Slowed wind power only reaches the interior of the forest and protects further growth.
The forest on Sophienhöhe is very time-consuming and expensive to manage. We use it as a special feature as part of our “Campus Natura” concept and also offer the forest to our business customers as a place to linger and as an opportunity for “outdoor conferences”.
Place of regenrative energy
We want to further improve the climate balance with a renewable solar energy project. The Sophienhöhe energy center is to have another special feature. The project consists of a combination of parabolic trough collectors in the high-temperature solar range with a heat storage technology (earth storage), which is controlled by a heat pump system. The project, which was approved by a national jury, is intended to become part of the city of Kerpen's “integrated climate concept” and therefore requires sustained support from the local community.
The project is called MultipleEnergy VSH. The project is being pursued as a model project and is intended to become a blueprint for other small-scale forms of energy generation. As a project component, the project fits 100% into the upcoming structural adjustments in the Rhenish district. The project will be implemented as soon as separate financing is secured.
Unique selling point
With the diverse gastronomic offers, the offers for the regeneration of the body's own forces, the application-oriented research work, the planned connection of German Naturopathy (DNK) with Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) as well as with solar heat generation and its storage, the Sophienhöhe is intended to be a “Place of energy” of a special kind. It should have the charisma and at the same time be an attraction. The Sophienhöhe should mature into a place with a unique selling point (USP).
The program for the development of Campus Natura is very ambitious. It is diverse, multifaceted and at the same time a new, holistic offer. It is meant for our hotel guests who long for a time out that is offered to them at Sophienhöhe. That’s what makes the location so attractive. The implementation of the “Campus Natura” project is planned over a five-year timeline. It should mature from a vision to reality.
There is an orchard with old trees on the Sophienhöhe site. This will be expanded by planting more trees. We have acquired another orchard with over 30 fruit trees along the Huhnerbach. We also want to expand this inventory and make it an “eye-catcher” in the landscape. The fruit is processed for guests in our restaurant. We want to draw attention to this natural treasure next year with a fruit blossom festival in spring and a fruit harvest festival in autumn.