Notes from the Past

Hotel Stamps

Local stamps formerly issued by the managements of certain hotels at European health resorts to cover a fee charged for carrying guests' mail to and from the nearest post office, which was often some miles distant.  There are three groups: the Swiss, the Hungarian-cum-Roumainian, and the Austrian.

The Swiss group is the largest.  In the early 1860s there were a number of hotels situated high up in the mountains, remote from normal postal facilities.  The first hotel to issue its own stamps was Rigi Kaitbad in 1864.  The example was afterwards followed by Rigi Scheideck, Belalp, Kurort Stoos, Maderanerthal, and Rigi Kulm.  Many of these stamps, especially on cover are of great rarity.  In 1883 their use was prohibited by the Swiss Government, and although further hotel stamps continued to appear until 1899, it seems probable that they were used only as advertising labels and had no postal validity.

The Hungarian-cum-Roumanian group were issued by hotels at Carpathian resorts, originally part of Hungary but transferred to Roumania after the First World War.  The group consists of Kurhaus auf der Hohen Rinne (1895-1926), Magura (during 1903 and again in 1911), and Bistra (1909-12).

The most modern group is the Austrian, comprising the issues of the Kesselfall-Alpenhaus and Moserboden (in use 1927-38), and Katschberghohe (winter months, 1933-8).

- R. J. Sutton 6th edition revised by K. W. Anthony
The Stamp Collector's Encyclopaedia
Published 1966
 Posted February 14, 2000

Index of 508 Notes from the Past

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