Our parents took over the company in poor condition in 1981 and saved it from being demolished. My older siblings witnessed the entire construction and conversion phase. They experienced the positive and negative sides of the hotel business even more than I did.
As the youngest of this generation, it was a bit easier for me. Nevertheless, I got to know the different areas of the hotel at an early age. From the kitchen to the service area and the wellness department – as a family member you help, where somebody is missing. Looking back the early contact and dealing with guests as well as the early assumption of responsibility was certainly an advantage in my personal development.
Growing up, was there another career you wanted to choose, or did you always want to work for the family business?
If you ask our regular guests, then I always wanted to follow in my Dad’s footsteps and become a doctor. Against the background that I always wanted to work with my siblings, but not in the same function, so the medical part has also offered. Somehow it was predetermined, but in fact today I there is no other profession that I would rather practice.
What is your role in the business?
My father is the medical director of our hotel. In addition to studying, I worked alongside him to review our medical offerings and adapted and expanded them to the present day. This included regular staff training on health issues. Let’s see how well this will work next to the specialist training.
How do you balance work and pleasure while working so closely with your family?
Having a Work-life balance is often easier said than done, especially in stressful phases. Therefore, time-outs are also essential for me. Everyone should know a place where they can rest. Especially at family reunions it is hard to find a limit to everyday life in which the hotel plays the main role. In any case, the separation of job and private can be optimised in our family.
How do you manage family disagreements?
Whether within the family or with co-workers, good communication is indispensable. Especially for family members you often have to take time that is otherwise planned for other things. Through appreciative discussions and interested listening energy-consuming conflicts can be avoided.
In the case of family disagreements the most important thing is to separate the personal relationship and the factual issues or conflicts. With differences of opinion, everyone first connects the irresistible insistence on his position to the price of power and competition. Rather, it is about using disagreements as a positive driving force to advance a process and not slow it down.
Can you tell our readers a bit about the history of BollAnts?
The original hotel was built by our great-grandfather Andres Dhonau. He fell ill at the age of 25 with severe atopic dermatitis, which was cured with the help of Pastor Emanuel Felke. Andres Dhonau subsequently built the first “Felke Kurhaus” and was able to convince Felke to practise his healing method there. Despite a serious flood, the hotel was repeatedly built up and continued by family members. To this day, the classic “Felke therapy” is practised according to Pastor Felke and supplemented by other classic and modern naturphatic treatments. As co-founder of the spa idea in Germany, the former sanatorium Kurhaus Dhonau evolved into today’s health and wellness hotel BollAnts. Since 2005 the fourth generation has taken over operation of the hotel, renovated numerous rooms, opened a new wellness center with a all year round heated 20-meter outdoor pool, new relaxation rooms and saunas and a new guest house.
Who can visit BollAnts?
Anyone. The hotel offers many possibilities to spend vacation time. Those seeking peace and quiet, can relax in our various relaxation rooms or enjoy treatment tailored to their needs, such as our chill-out massage, awarded as the “Best Signature Treatment” of Germany in 2014. This unique massage simultaneously relaxes and vitalises body and soul in the rhythm of gentle beats and spherical sounds of chill out music.
Active people have the opportunity to start their day early with the morning routine at 7:45 am either with a walking round or an activating morning exercise. This is followed by the refreshing sitting bath and water aerobics in our large outdoor pool.
Connoisseurs are not only in good hands with our therapists, but also with our star chef Jens Fischer who indulges the taste buds every evening anew. Also, health-conscious people visit us for their annual detox or to reconcile body and mind. The list could be continued in this way ☺
What can our readers enjoy when they visit BollAnts?
First and foremost, a unique break from everyday life, which can be individually filled with the building blocks that meet your needs.
Which programs are there?
In addition to seasonal offers such as spring fasting, there are hiking weeks throughout the year, yoga retreats and multi-day Ayurveda cooking days. Throughout the year there are also special indulge package for new couples, married couples, for expectant parents or for friends. At Christmas or New Year’s Eve we are often visited by whole families who celebrate together with us.
All year round, our guests can also use their time-out for therapeutic fasting or detoxing and have themselves checked by a doctor. Furthermore, there are special offers for conflict and stress management as well as burnout prevention and therapy. Some companies use our hotel for their meetings and trainings.
What is the Felke-Healing Method? And what is behind the healing clay therapy?
The clay therapy has a millennia-old tradition. Pastor Felke integrated it into his treatment based on the natural elements of light, air, water and earth, supplemented by healthy nutrition, movement and calm.
Healing earth consists of natural loess, which has a special, almost ideal composition of minerals and trace elements. The alkaline clay itself, with its soaking effect, detoxifies and deacidifies the body. The healing earth can be both externally, as well be applied internally.
What is hidden behind the Felkian healing approach?
Felke already considered the human in his entirety. He did not treat symptoms, but investigated the causes and tried to restore the natural balance. We continue to pursue this approach today.
When is the best time to visit BollAnts?
Many of our regular guests come again and again over the year to take a short break for themselves and to replenish exhausted energy reserves. Every season has its own charm. In winter, it is particularly cosy in our SPA area, but in summer you can optimally enjoy the spaciousness of our park and sunbathe under the open sky. Spring captivates with its flower splendour and the morning dew over the meadows. Autumn invites to long walks through the colorful wine landscape of the Nahe region.
Can you tell our readers a bit more about the fasting cure?
The ability to fast has contributed to the fact that the human species has survived the historical period until today. In times of war, drought and bad harvest many people had to and still have to fast involuntarily. In contrast, voluntary fasting almost always has a religious or medical background. From a medical point of view, fasting is experiencing a renaissance. Scientific research and media interest has increased enormously in recent years, which is certainly due to the diverse effects. Especially in a time when affluent diseases burden the health system more than ever, it would be desirable for fasting cures to be re-integrated into everyday medical practice.
What is the special feature of Buchinger’s fasting?
We offer our guests a preventive short-term fasting of five days to find a way into a new diet or to change their lifestyle. For chronic diseases, we recommend therapeutic fasting with longer lasts (> 14 days). But fasting does not mean starving: herbal teas, purified by reverse osmosis water, pure vegetable essences and freshly pressed fruit and vegetable juices, as well as a mineral therapy are part of the Felke-Heilfastens. In our new detox program, we are also supplementing with chlorella-algae and zeolite-based diversion therapy, microbial therapy to build up the intestinal flora, as well as vitamin concentrates and trace element supplements to fill up empty storages.
Who should fast?
Almost everyone can be recommended to fast at least once a year. Particularly suitable is fasting for the normalization of incipient hypertension, for the treatment of geriatric diabetes (type 2 diabetes mellitus), in obesity, a lipid metabolism disorder in rheumatic diseases, indigestion even for the prevention of cancer.
How often should you fast?
We recommend our guests 1-2 fasting stays per year. Many guests supplement this with one or more “pleasure” stays with a visit to our Michelin star restaurant.
Do you have tools to help you continue your progress at home?
The fast days can be continued at home after the stay. However, the “breaking of the fast” is the most challenging part and therefore should be accompanied by a professional – especially at the first fast. The slow nutritional structure is important to gently recover the digestive organs from the “holiday”, but people tend to rashly empty the entire refrigerator when back in their home environment.
Is there something fasting equivalent that can be integrated into everyday life?
En vogue is the so-called intermittent fasting for health prevention. That means a meal break of at least 12 hours, so that the body gets the time to deal with the “tidying up”. Depending on your own daily rhythm, dinner may be brought forward or breakfast may be left out. At home, it can be easily integrated into everyday life and can complement the “right” fasting. Equally good is a fixed fasting day in the week, where only freshly squeezed and vegetable broth are taken.
Do you have expansion plans for BollAnts or projects that you can share with our readers?
After many major construction sites in recent years, we are currently looking forward to a little breather. We use this time to optimise processes, train employees, and develop new offers for our guests. In any case, there is no standstill at BollAnts and you can be sure that there are already new ideas and plans for the next projects.