Phantasialand fans have been waiting on a new project for the last 4 years. It has finally come to life. In the middle of September, Rookburgh was unveiled to an eager audience. The project’s opening date was inevitably pushed back by the ongoing pandemic. This meant that an originally planned opening date of June wasn’t feasible. Therefore, the public’s anticipation and excitement had grown even more over the extra months of waiting.
Phantasialand’s brand new and third resort hotel, Charles Lindbergh, is intertwined with this exquisitely detailed themed world, and opened at the end of September. With a new lockdown recently announced in Germany, the resort has been forced to close again. Unfortunately, this meant the window of opportunity to visit this new hotel was very small. We were lucky enough to experience this brand new hotel in the middle of October, and will be providing you with a detailed insight into the experience it has to offer.
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Charles Lindbergh was an American aviator, military officer, author, inventor and activist. He is well known for making history with the first non-stop solo flight across the Atlantic Ocean; from New York city to Paris, in May 1927. The main rollercoaster in Rookburgh; F.L.Y, allows guests to experience the sensation of flying, as Charles Lindbergh would have done in his plane. When Rookburgh’s seasonal aeronauts are on their travels, their private cabins are vacated. This allows guests to move into one of these private cabins for the night and experience the adventure of aviation and the chance to sleep like an aeronaut.
Upon arrival to the hotel, guests are immediately fascinated by the attention to detail of the steampunk theme. A large corroding metal wall with various pipes and a brickwork chimney to the left hand side towers over guests as they descend the steps to the guarded private entrance doorway.
Other details on the Charles Lindbergh hotel entrance portal include; intricate lettering of the hotel’s name which lights up at night time and gold plated lanterns which illuminate the wall with a warming orange and red colour. Furthermore, in the centre of the entrance portal there is an intriguing metal dome which is detailed with the hotel’s logo.
Once the porter ensures you are members of the exclusive Explorer’s Society, they open the gateway to the Hotel Charles Lindbergh. You make your way through an enclosed tunnel lit with warming orange lanterns. You walk down the black and white tiled flooring of the tunnel past an old airport-style luggage conveyor-belt with various suitcases and briefcases from the 1900s.
Here is a look at the hotel check-in lobby from inside the hotel entrance portal. Gold lettering advises explorers of where they can check into their cabins for the night. You can also see the detailed Charles Lindbergh emblem to the right hand side, and F.L.Y, which whizzes past the check in lobby and is entangled around the rest of the hotel.
Explorers enter the hotel check-in lobby from the enclosed tunnel. Lanterns illuminate the lobby which has brick walls, a wooden floor and pipes across the ceiling, as well as iron support arches. The lobby is detailed with traditional furniture styles from the 1900s, including a red velvet sofa and leather chairs. Around the lobby you can find various tables and stands, where you can pick up the Rookburgh Gazette, which is the daily newspaper where explorers can find out the latest information about the ongoings in Rookburgh. The hotel lobby also features various pictures on the brick walls of old aircraft and aviation pioneers.
At one of the two check-in portals you will be greeted by an attendant, dressed in a buttoned suit and an American style flat cap from the 1900s. Next, the attendant will give you your cabin keys, a map of the hotel’s walkways and cabin network and your F.L.Y. quick-passes. These F.L.Y. quick-passes enable you to skip the queue once a day so you can conquer the skies without waiting in line. The attendant then directs you to check in to your cabin…
To get to your cabin you must first navigate a maze of stairwells, walkways and balconies, guided by your explorer map. The staircases are made of corroding metal plates which tower around you and make you feel very small as you navigate the complex layout of the cabin network. Intricately detailed aluminum plating looms above you as you ascend and descend the staircases. A rusty smell fills the stairwell as you climb the staircases… Furthermore, the stairwells are fitted with gas pressure monitors and a lighting design which provides a warming glow.
Once you managed to find your cabin for the night, you scan your cabin key and twist the red and gold handle and the door gently swings open…
If you were expecting a spacious and luxury room like the Hotel Ling Bao offers, then think again. Phantasialand has strived to provide a genuinely authentic aeronautical adventure, where you can spend the night as an aviation pioneer would have. The room is fitted with two single beds, each with storage compartments underneath. On either side there are railings fitted with theming pieces, however also where you can hang towels and jackets. On the far side of the room is a TV, although TVs were only just invented before Charles Lindbergh took to his fame. Additionally, the room also has extra small details, such as the fire sprinkler systems.
If you slide open the black and gold door on the far side then you will enter the cabin’s bathroom. Quite frankly, we think the aeronauts were blessed with such extensive bathroom facilities. Although, we were grateful for being able to utilise them while the aeronauts were on their travels. On the far side of the bathroom is a round window, detailed with gears and cogs. If you open the window you can climb straight out onto the balcony on the other side of the cabin…
Seeing as we promised you such a detailed insight into the experience package explorers undertake at the Hotel Charles Lindbergh… We thought we’d show you some more of the bathroom facilities. Explorers are provided with a toilet, a wash basin and towels… as expected. There is also a lavender and peppermint hand soap that can be used, which was designed by an American pharmacy “C.O. Bigelow Apothecaries”, which was founded in 1838. Don’t forget to wash your hands!
Back in the main section of the cabin you also have a Travel Gear compartment. In here you can store your luggage, clothes, or anything else you fancy. Be warned to keep the compartment closed in case of heavy weather.
So, from the cabin, it’s time to do what any other explorer would do- discover the rest of the hotel. Starting from the ground and working our way up to the top of the imposing structure and maze of cabins, balconies, stairwells and corridors. Explorers eagerly make their way around the maze-like design as they try to get their bearings. Explorers can traverse along a walkway very close to a pool of water with fountains below, with F.L.Y. looking increasingly imposing and surrounding explorers both above and below.
Explorers see various theming pieces and effects as they continue to navigate their way around the complexity of the Charles Lindbergh hotel. For example, explorers see dancing fountains in the murky water below, or if they look above they can see smoke effects from pipes and chimneys. One of the most intriguing theming pieces is a hot air balloon, which is surrounded by the hotel and the twisting and turning layout of F.L.Y.
The Vekoma double-launched flying coaster encapsulates the Hotel Charles Lindbergh. Therefore, explorers can hear the whoosh of the rollercoaster as it whizzes past their cabins, or they can even watch the coaster zooming past from the balconies. As explorers make their way from the bottom of the cabin network to the top of the skyscraper hotel, climbing staircases and walking across balconies, there are many different viewing points and photo-opportunities for F.L.Y. From one of the balconies explorers have the perfect view-point of the second launch of F.L.Y. Explorers can watch the rollercoaster whizzing around the track and other explorers enjoying their dreams of flying.
From the bottom of the Hotel Charles Lindbergh to the top. Once you reach the highpoint of the hotel you are greeted with a viewing platform. There lies a bench with intricate lettering above of the hotel name for the perfect photo opportunity. From the viewing point explorers can look out over Rookburgh. The viewing platform really allows you to take in all the intricate details, theming pieces and workmanship that has been put into the area. From the cascading and towering walls surrounding Rookburgh, to the steam train above the first launch and zeppelins around the area. Of course, the viewing platform provides great views and the perfect photo opportunity for photos of F.L.Y.
Below is another panoramic photo I took from the viewing platform at the top of the Hotel Charles Lindbergh. The viewing platform really provides the perfect view over Rookburgh, allowing explorers to take in every single detail and enjoy the overall atmosphere. You can also spot Mystery Castle in the background, one of our favourite rides in the main park.
There’s another balcony a gate across to the right of the main viewing platform that I absolutely love. This balcony provides the perfect photo opportunity for F.L.Y as it gracefully maneuvers through one of the inversions, over a building and a near miss beside a chimney piece. I love how well F.L.Y and Rookburgh blend in with the rest of the park in this photo. Behind you can see Mexico and China, and even some of Klugheim. I simply adore how Phantasialand utilise the space and make such a small footprint feel like such a giant theme park.
It’s worth mentioning as well that Hotel Explorers have their own private access and entry gate to Rookburgh. Day guests may have to queue to get into Rookburgh and then again for F.L.Y, whereas hotel guests have Rookburgh on their doorstep. Furthermore, hotel guests have their own private entrance gate for F.L.Y. itself.
After park close, explorers use their private access gate to the hotel to head back to their cabins before getting ready for their evening meal. As part of the current offering, explorers will get a three course meal included. This takes place in the Restaurant Uhrwerk, which day guests can also access if they have an appetite. I love the ambient atmosphere in the Uhrwerk. On the ground floor, theres a big clock as the centre-piece of the restaurant. There’s also pipework along the ceilings and big capsules on the wall containing a lava like substance, which provide a glow and luminosity as they colour change over time. Of course, the restaurant sticks with the similar style to the rest of the Charles Lindbergh with the brickwork walls…
The tables themselves feature various theming pieces such as traditional tea sets and coffee pots. Lanterns hang down and illuminate the tables below. There are multiple diagrams and drawings on the walls of different aircraft and routes that the aviation pioneers plan to fly in their jets. As you walk through the restaurant to take your seat you will see big steel supports towering through the ceiling- these are in fact the supports for F.LY. As you take your seats, the chair softly bounces beneath you. Menus are brought over in the form of the evening newspaper- “Abendpost”. From here you can select each of your three courses, as well as drinks.
If you have read my previous blogs, I have a love for theme park food, and feel that it always deserves to be mentioned as is a key feature of an experience in a park. In my opinion, Phantasialand brings the quality to the table when it comes to theme park restaurants, and the food is always homemade. I’ve eaten in the Taverne multiple times before and have failed to be disappointed. Uhrwerk was no different. My starter is shown above, and my main course below. The main course was a highlight for sure. I opted for “Golden Fritz: Parachute”. This featured two individual burgers, each with a different type of meat, and an assortment of dips and extras that you could add into them. The fries, which are normally presented in a shovel, were covered in pancetta, cheddar and a fried egg, as well as herbs. The main course was absolutely delicious.
For dessert, I opted for a dish created by the park owner’s daughter herself. Also one of the lead singers in Musarteum, a park show, Joelle has designed her own dessert in the restaurant Uhrwerk- “Joe’s Nougat Surprise”. This dessert had such a smooth and silky texture, as well as a nutty, caramel and chocolatey taste.
The night was still young and it was time to check out the hotel’s bar, which is exclusive to members of the Explorer Society. If you like beer, this place is for you. There’s 15 different types of Craft Beer to choose from. We love the steampunk and metallic style of the bar counter, with the light portals on either side and the metal pipework connecting to each of the beer taps.
There’s an assortment of different seating to choose from in the Bar 1919. From metallic pod chairs to high stools- You also have the choice between sitting inside or sitting outside below the second launch of F.L.Y. Sitting inside also enables explorers to enjoy a game of darts or billiards…
We already elaborated on the different types of craft beer that Bar 1919 has to offer. However, if you are a cocktail fan, this place is also for you. There’s various long drinks and cocktails to choose from. But if you’re a fan of something a bit more unique, inventive and out there; cocktail bowls have been specially designed for explorers to enjoy. There’s various different cocktail bowls on offer, which are all designed for sharing between two explorers. Below is the cocktail bowl we opted for: “Clouds of Blue”. The bar attendant brings the bowl over, which is filled with sweets and cakes from Emilie’s Chocoladen & Candy-Werkstatt. The bar attendant then pours the cocktail mixture into the bowl full of sweets and candies. The cocktail mixture starts to bubble and effervesce as it is poured into the bowl. This forms clouds of smoke which creates a fog like effect. This misty fog starts to mysteriously rise up out of the bowl, creating a real treat for the eyes.
Our exploring still wasn’t over yet. As it went from dusk to dark, we took to exploring the hotel at night time, to experience a new kind of atmosphere. The overall structure of the hotel and the rest of Rookburgh is lit up in a rich blue-purple colour, which creates a very ambient effect. However, each of the cabins are lit up with an individual torch-light which guides explorers back to their sleeping areas at the end of the night.
Explorers can then make their way up to the top viewing platform once again and look out from the balcony across the rest of Rookburgh. The towering walls are lit up with the deep blue-purple lighting which creates a very imposing and ambient effect. The various zeppelins are lit up with solid white lighting and the streets of Rookburgh are lit up with a warming glow of orange-yellow street lamps.
The railway track of the first launch is lit up in a bright purple, whilst the railway carriage itself is illuminated with a baby blue colour. There are various red spotlights dotted around the area of Rookburgh, for example red spotlights around the zeppelin at Pier 5. These red spotlights pulse on and off throughout the evening creating key points of focus for explorers to look at and an encompassing atmosphere.
It was now late into the night and time to return to the cabin and head to bed. We were hoping for a good night’s sleep, however the comfort arrangement of the rooms is somewhat questionable. The beds and pillows themselves are very comfy, however the individual beds are very narrow, making it harder to get to sleep. Furthermore, the positioning of a sharp metal ledge, attached to the wall, but overhanging each of the beds could be considered a questionable design. Perhaps an authentic sleeping experience for a true aeronaut pioneer, but not the luxury night’s sleep a guest at Phantasialand perhaps would expect at a high price point. Unfortunately, I didn’t sleep too well and awoke early… Luckily to a glorious sunrise…
Below is one of my favourite shots from the entire trip. The contrasting colours of the sky; the warming orange contrasting with deep purples in the background and crimson clouds in the forefront. In case anyone was wondering, it’s a #nofilter photo. I love how you can see the smooth trackwork of F.L.Y, one of Rookburgh’s chimneys and the rooftops of the Ling Bao in the background.
A night’s stay in the Hotel Charles Lindbergh also promises a delicious breakfast in the morning only in the circle of the Explorer’s Society. You and other explorers get to tackle a buffet breakfast with a range of different German specialties, however also dishes with a French and American influence. There is so much to choose from. Below you can see our American style French toast, as well as a pot with scrambled egg and sausage and one with pancetta and a poached egg. There’s also a selection of continental breakfast such as pastries, bread and different spreads like peanut butter, Nutella and marshmallow fluff!
After a hearty and warming breakfast, explorers can enjoy their second day in Rookburgh and discovering the rest of Phantasialand. Rookburgh is filled with various smoke effects and various different steampunk themed props, such as cars and other vehicles, embedded with gears and cogs in their engines. We also enjoyed experiencing other themed areas, shows and attractions in the rest of the park during our trip too. Notably, we loved riding Chiapas, Mystery Castle and of course Taron. We also loved watching Ice College 2020 and riding Crazy Bats too!
After spending our second day enjoying the whole of the park, it was time to head back to the hotel and pack up before heading back to the train station. We headed back into Rookburgh and made a stop off at Emilies’ Chocoladen & Candy-Werkstatt. This is the chocolate and sweet shop located in the heart of Rookburgh, and in my opinion it can’t be missed. There’s various different confectionary to choose from, including pick & mix sweets and handmade chocolate bars, which are delicately handcrafted right in front of you in the shop. There’s loads of different flavours to choose from, and we picked up a couple of different bags of chocolate to take home.
It was time to pack up our bags and head back to the hotel lobby so we could check out and head out of the park. The check out process was very smooth and the hotel receptionists were very friendly and attentive. We also love the attention to detail in the painting below, which is located near to the hotel lobby.
So how do we rate the Hotel Charles Lindbergh as a whole experience?
We had an absolutely fantastic overall stay in the Hotel Charles Lindbergh, and we were fascinated experiencing Rookburgh for the first time. The attention to detail in the hotel with the theming and the atmosphere created is world-class. It certainly lives up to the top quality standards Phantasialand aims to achieve across all of their new areas and in their hotels. The ambience in the hotel is very dramatic and creates a sense of adventure, and the quality of the food in the restaurant is absolutely outstanding. The home-made dishes and cocktails in the bar are very unique and inventive, and everything tastes delicious.
There was one issue for me however, and that comes down to the comfort of the rooms. Whilst we think Phantasialand have created a truly authentic experience of sleeping like an aeronaut, it was challenging to have a good night’s sleep. A small cabin style room means for small beds in an uncomfortable arrangement. Whilst I think Phantasialand have utilised their limited space with the cabins well, I have to lie slight criticism with the comfort of the rooms themselves.
In terms of price point, we think the price Phantasialand are charging for the package and overall experience is completely fair and reasonable. 449 euros (400 off-peak) for 1 night for 2 people including extras such as park tickets and the 3-course dinner is a very fair price. We thoroughly enjoyed our overall experience in the Hotel Charles Lindbergh. We really enjoyed our time as explorers and therefore thought the package was great value for the overall experience.
Would we stay in the Charles Lindbergh again? The short answer is yes. As an overall package, the experience provided is phenomenal. But if we had the choice between any of the park’s three resort hotels, we would opt for the Hotel Ling Bao instead. The Hotel Ling Bao provides much more spacious and comfortable rooms, which allow for more relaxation and a better nights sleep.
I hope you enjoyed reading this article and I hope it inspires you to get out there and experience Rookburgh and Charles Lindbergh for yourself, as soon as it is safe to do so.
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