Residence Hotel Langes derives its name from Gunther Langes, a tyrolean mountaineer and writer born in Fiera di Primiero at the end of the Nineteenth century: a symbol of a disputed territory, but most of all a great mountaineer, who loved his homeland and his mountains, which he explored and wrote about in his works.
The routes explored and opened by Gunther Langes are still ranked among the most beautiful classic hikes of the Dolomites, together with some other climbing routes and first ascents achieved by the local and european mountaineering pioneers, who reached in silence the top of these beloved mountains: for this reason, each apartment of Residence Hotel Langes is dedicated to the men who made Dolomites great to the wider world, through their ascents, their stories and their pictures.
GUNTHER LANGES (1899 – 1972) Tyrolean skier, mountaineer and writer. Born in Fiera di Primiero, at a very young age he enlisted as a Kaiserjäger in the Imperial Rifle regiment, and contributed to several german newspapers, going back to his beloved Dolomites whenever he can. Between 1919 and 1921 he climbed 17 new routes on the Pale di San Martino, such as the normal way and the south-west pillar Gran Pilastro of the Pala di San Martino, one of the most beautiful and a great classical route of the Dolomites. Very interested in photography, Langes documented through his camera dolomitic landscapes and routes: his collection represents today one of the most important documents about Dolomites during the World War.
WALTER GHEZZI (1906 – 1984) Polymath milanese entrepreneur, mountain lover, fond of skiing and climbing. After the purchase in 1957 of the historic Hotel Dolomiti and the del Sole chairlift, which connected San Martino to Passo Rolle, Ghezzi dedicated himself to the relaunch of San Martino as a ski-resort, through the development and the construction of the first Tognola cablecar in 1959, an impressive venture in terms of length and difference in height, today in its third generation.
DINO BUZZATI (1906 – 1972) Italian writer and journalist, very passionate about mountaineering and climbing: since childhood, he spent his Summer holiday on the Dolomites and frequented the Croda da Lago and the Pale di San Martino, a location he was very concerned about. Buzzati payed tribute to these stunning mountains as places of solitude and deep thinking in his 1952 masterpiece The Tartar steppe, drawing inspiration by the Pale plateau and its desolate rocky moon-landscape.
HERMANN PANZER (1855 – 1923) The german-born manager of the Grand Hotel Trento moved to San Martino di Castrozza at the end of the 19th century. He renovated and enlarged the Hotel Alpino, which became then Hotel Dolomiti, dealing with its management also through the hard times of the World War. The Hotel, located in the heart of the little town, became a reference point in San Martino di Castrozza. Panzer, a determined and visionary man, dedicated himself to build the first lift with wooden sledges on the Alpe Tognola, paving the way for the winter tourism of San Martino.
MICHELE BETTEGA (1853 – 1937) The first Alpine Guide of Primiero: initially serving the Ben family as a shepherd, he became later one of the most popular Alpine Guide of this area. Bettega, a shy and determined man, led with his friend Bortolo Zagonel 47 first ascents on the Dolomites and the Pale di San Martino, achieving the top of the Pala di San Martino (2987 m) after a long siege, in 1878. Among the clients of his record book appear the famous photographers Guido Rey and Theodor von Wundt.
JOHN BALL (1818 – 1889) Irish writer, naturalist and mountaineer, first president of the Alpine Club in 1857. He fell in love with Dolomites during a tour in the Sixties, and explored since 1867 the Pale di San Martino, recording the breathtaking views and spots on his log. His reports sparked interest among his english colleagues, and paved the way the development of mountain-tourism in this area: for this reason, Cima di Ball (2802 m) and the namesake Pass (2442 m) on the Pale di San Martino, are dedicated to him.
HERMANN BUHL (1924 – 1957) Austrian mountaineer with a tenacious temper, considered a pioneer of extreme mountaineering because of his first solo ascent of an eight-thousander without oxygen, according the alpine style technique. He climbed on the Pale di San Martino in the Fifties, made the first west route to Cima Canali (2900 m), just a few steps far from the Pradidali hut, climbing on a rocky pillar which was then named after him, a way which is still ranked among the most beautiful routes of the Dolomites.
RENZO DEBERTOLIS (1937 – 2007) Emeritus Alpine Guide, he led the group of the local Alpine guides, the Aquile di San Martino, since 1970. He organized the first Trentino expedition on an eight-thousander, the third italian expedition, and between 1960 and 1970 he opened about 15 routes on the Pale di San Martino, from Campanile Gilli to Cima Madonna, besides several winter routes on Cimon della Pala. A mountain person, still remebered with affection by many inhabitants of the little village of San Martino because of his conduct as an alpine guide and a municipal administrator.
JEANNE IMMINK (1853 – 1929) Dutch feminist and mountaineer. This rebel young woman climbed on several four-thousanders and took part in some expedition on the Alps and in India. She explored the Dolomites and made some first ascents with the local Alpine Guides of San Martino: for this great credit, Cima Immink and the next Campanile Giovanna on the Pale di San Martino, are dedicated to this resourceful woman.
AURELIANO “LALLO” GADENZ (1929 – 2006) Local photographer and mountaineer, son of the famous photographer Nanni Gadenz, he was nicknamed “photo-climber”. He renovated the photographic technique and the image crops, developing his own black and white style. He drew inspiration by the essential lines of the Pedrotti brothers style, and dedicated himself to tell stories of rural landscape and its people, of mountains and its beautiful line through the lenses of his camera.
THEODOR von WUNDT (1858 – 1929) German writer, photographer and mountaineer. He frequented Dolomites since 1887, and made with the local Alpine Guides Bettega and Zagonel several first ascents on the Pale di San Martino — such as the most important one, the ascent to Cimon della Pala — taking pictures of dolomitic peaks and rocky walls for the first time in history of mountaineering. Still today, these precious black and white shots – gathered into the 1892 volume Die besteigung des Cimon della Pala – tell a story of great men, who conquered these beloved mountains in silence, without dreams of glory.