Tuesday 20 March 2018

German hotel apologises for naming spa event after Nazi attacks

By Louise Barnett, Berlin

German lesisure centre under fire for naming event "Kristall Nacht"

A German leisure centre has apologised for publicising a “romantic Kristall Nacht evening” being held at its spa on the 75th anniversary of Kristallnacht, when the Nazis launched a murderous attack on Jewish homes and businesses.

The Kristall Sauna-Wellnesspark in Bad Klosterlausnitz, central Germany, had invited visitors to: “Enjoy the evening in romantic candlelight”, adding that the “magical atmosphere” would continue until midnight.

But the hotel’s choice of words met with an outraged response on social media sites. A screenshot of the advert published on the hotel’s own website was quickly posted and shared on Twitter, according to the German news magazine Der Spiegel.

One commenter condemned the centre’s event on the anniversary of Kristallnacht — known in English as “Night of Broken Glass” — as “impious and insolent”, adding: “I request, no, I demand, that you cancel this”.

The centre’s Facebook page received more than 700 comments after its apology. One response read: “That you behaved as you did is shameful. Neither I, nor any member of my family, nor any of my colleagues, will EVER do business with your hotel or firm, EVER.”

At least 91 Jews were killed in what was the first wave of organised violence against them across Nazi Germany.

In a statement on its website entitled simply “apology”, the leisure centre said: “We’d like to apologise unreservedly for our insensitive choice of name for the event on 9th November 2013.

“We attach the word 'Kristall’ to many of our events because of our company name, just as in this case. We hugely regret it! Obviously the wording wasn’t intentional. Please believe that we’re extremely ashamed of this mistake.”

The centre offers visitors a selection of thermal baths, saunas, dining and massage in what its website describes as “an oasis in our modern world”.

Events will take place across Berlin on 9th and 10th November to mark the 75th anniversary of Kristallnacht.

They include an initiative asking the public to clean the nearly 5,000 memorial stones laid city-wide in memory of the victims of National Socialism who were deported, murdered or driven into exile.



Today's news headlines, directly to your inbox every morning.

Editors Choice

Also in World News