From history of Kristin hrádek
Kristin hrádek (German Christianenburg) is a small hunting residence from 18th century which is situated on the border of the Czech Republic and Saxony close to Děčín and Vysoký (Děčínský) Sněžník. It was built by count Jan Josef Thun-Hohenstein (1711-1788) in a place called Hühnerhügel (Hen´s hill) in 1934-1935. The castle was named after the first wife of count Jan Josef, whose name was Maria Christina, born countess from Hohenzollern (1715-1749). Count Jan Josef Thun concentrated in his hands all vast property which the family of Thun acquired in Bohemia during 17th century and was the only owner of Thun dominions Klášterec nad Ohří, Děčín and Choltice. His person is usually connected with hobby of hunting for which he had perfect conditions especially on his land in Děčín.
In 1830´s a hunting yard was established in Podmokly whose part was also an armoury, storehouse of hunting gear and also a kennel. This area which is a today ´s seat of Museum of Děčín and state archive becomes a centre of Thun´s forest administration and later on Central directorate for administration of property of Thun family from Děčín.
Děčín manor with its centre in Děčín castle belonged between the most important Thun family properties. Its extension amount to over more than 10.000 hectares. Various enterprises as brewery, wine distillery, quarries, vineyards, brickfields and farmyards were part of the grange respectively manor. However, overwhelming part of the domain formed extensive forests stretching along Czech –Saxony border starting in Tisá and Vysoký Sněžník and going up to Labské údolí. Kristin hrádek is situated right in the middle of this area.
Kristin hrádek should be used as retreat and base for hunting entertainment of the owners of the Děčín manor. Probably since the beginning also gamekeeper´s lodge with a small grange stood here and Kristin hrádek was also a centre of one of Thun family´s forest hunting grounds. An information dated 1767 says that count Jan Josef Thun opened a job of border guard in Kristin hrádek. Certain Pankrác Müller should supervise the border between Děčín domain and Saxony to be properly respected, he should protect forests of the count from thieves and simultaneously guard the actual building of Kristin hrádek. Border between Saxony and domain of Děčín was for a long time a bone of contention in 17th and 18th century. Whole border was even surrounded with a fence which should protect against running over of the game from one land to another.
Whereas the 18th century was age of the greatest glamour of local hunting but the first half of the 19th century was unfavourable to this hobby. Then count František Antonín Thun-Hohenstein (1786-1873) was the owner of Děčín. Domain of Děčín experienced unprecedented progress and prosperity during this period. Count František Antonín led administration of his domain with the most modern agricultural methods, he supported education and coming industry. Domain of Děčín belonged to the most modern and best administrated aristocratic dominions in the Czech lands. Of course proper care was devoted to forest farming also during this period. But popularity of hunting came back to these hunting grounds in the second half of 19th centrury. Since 1911 when the owner of manor farm estate was count František Thun, Czech vicegerent and Austrian prime minister, members of the most eminent noble families of the monarchy were coming to Děčín area - families of Schwarzenberg, Lobkowicz, Nostiz or for example baron and industrialist Ringhoffer. Also family members of Habsburg were coming to hunting ground of Děčín , f.e. prince royal Rudolf. Also successor to the throne František Ferdinand d´Este used to be guest here and was well known for his obsessive hunting passion.
Kristin hrádek served its original purpose and family of its architects until 1945. Its last owner of Thun family was Prince František Antonín Thun-Hohenstein (1890-1973). Prince František Antonín moved with his wife Františka, born princess of Lobkowitz, and their large family to the castle in Jílové at the turn of 20s and 30s of 20th century. In 30s and 40s of 20th century Kristin hrádek was frequently used and served as a summer flat to the princely family. Last generation of Thun family who were born in Bohemia still cherish a lot of memories of life in Kristin hrádek. Year 1945 was a turning point. At the end of war Kristin hrádek and also local forests were plundered by troops of general Vlasov who were going through. After war all Thun property was nationalized and princely family had to leave Bohemia after more than 300 years. Confiscated property became property of the state, forests and buildings of forestry including Kristin hrádek were taken over by state forests.
Kristin hrádek constituted then three buildings – house of forester, which served to head of forest grounds of Kristin hrádek, gamekeeper’s lodge for two gamekeepers, and a house intended for temporary accommodation of forest workers. The gamekeeper’s lodge was completely renovated in 1948 and also further renovation works were planned. At the beginning of 50s regime of guarding of frontier with the German Democratic Republic was tightened up. Kristin hrádek was situated in by troops guarded frontier zone, decayed and its destiny was close to destiny of many other buildings near frontier, which were demolished at that time. In the frontier zone forestry was practised to a limited extent and under supervision of army, hunting was cancelled in this area. This strict regime lasted until 1966. In 70s building of Kristin hrádek was partially renovated to be used by state forests for social purposes. General reconstruction of the area was carried out at the beginning of 90s of 20th century. Kristin hrádek was rebuilt to an accommodation and restaurant unit whose operation was secured by a tenant.
Currently the owner of Kristin hrádek is company Kristin hrádek s.r.o. which bought the area from Lesy České republiky in 2009. The new owner started reconstruction of the building whose goal is to restore here hotel operation and simultaneously create background for gamekeeping.
After the completion of the restoration, there will be a hotel complex with an accommodation capacity of 60 beds within various large rooms and also luxury suites available. The hotel restaurant would like to serve you quality Czech cuisine with the focus on offering original recipes.
Not only venison specialities but also the possibility to arrange various hunting meetings with the use of the adjoining hunting ground, following in the long hunting tradition of the manor. You will certainly delight in the romantic surroundings with beautiful countryside as you arrange a wedding reception or other company gatherings, which include trainings for which you can use the separate reception rooms with the necessary presentation equipment.
We support sport activities in your free time with the hiring of sport equipment, rides in horse-drawn carriages into the surrounding lands and even tennis and volleyball courts. Not only the hire of bikes with service, but also a buffet available to cyclists riding around on the cycling tracks.
Our goal is to create an attractive locality with plentiful possibilities of different activities and ways to relax, a note-worthy cuisine and pleasant service where you will look forward to coming back.