Konczyce Wielkie Castle quietly awaits tourists

A castle in the village of Konczyce Wielkie located in the Slask Cieszynski region of southern Poland has been bought by private investors for 1.6 mln zloty. Soon it may become an exclusive hotel.

The castle was built in the late 17th or early 18th Century by the Baron Jerzy Fryderyk Wilczek. Surrounding the castle was an English park with a lake. In 1825, the castle became the home of the Count Larishow von Mannichow family.

However, the most well-known resident was the castle?s last aristocratic owner, Gabriela von Thun-Hohenstein. A noted philanthropist and the founder of the Silesian Hospital in Cieszyn, she was known as the “Great Lady.”

Gabriela was born in 1872 in Wien. At the age of 21, she married Count Feliks von Thun-Hohenstein, who was the marshal of the army in Austria. They received the castle from Gabriela?s parents. According to documents, many of the area inhabitants in Silesia survived World War II only because the “Great Lady” gave them work in the castle.

After the war, when she was old and ill, she still cared for the needy, including alcoholics and the homeless. She died in 1957.
At the end of the World War II, the castle was damaged by Russian soldiers.

The entire estate came under government ownership. For a few years after the war, the castle was an orphanage.
In 2006, the local council in Cieszyn decided to sell the castle because of the high costs of housekeeping. Pawel Bragiel, a councilor from Cieszyn, told the newspaper Gazeta Wyborcza that several auction attempts failed because of the deterioration of the castle.

Finally, three businessmen from Mazowsze bought the castle, planning to convert it into an exclusive hotel. All works in the castle would be under the control of an art conservator.
Preservation is spreading.

Thanks to private investors, an 18th-Century castle in Czechowice-Dziedzice and a 16th-Century castle in Grodziec Slaski also have a good chance to be renovated.

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