Photos courtesy of Château St. Gerlach








Documentation from the 18th century relates that the first building on this site was a monastery founded by Gosewijn IV of Valkenburg, who wanted to provide accommodations to the many pilgrims who came to visit the nearby grave of the hermit Gerlach. In the following centuries, the monastery and convent served both men and ladies of noble birth.

Religious wars in the 16th century caused much destruction with the troops of Louis of Nassau burning down the monastery in 1574. In the 17th century, the Spanish took sovereignty over the estate, and one hundred years later, the Treaty of Fontainebleau gave it back to the Dutch. At that point, the nuns left the monastery permanently. Ten years later, the French annexed the Austrian Netherlands and sold off all monastic properties.

A manager of the Norbertine nuns bought the property and converted the provost building into a noble residence. The town of Houthem acquired the church in 1808. The Corneli family came to live at the present mansion, followed by the noble De Selys de Fanson family. In 1979, the last inhabitant, Robert De Selys de Fanson, left the estate to Houthem’s church council.

In 1997, the monastery/country estate was given new life as a luxury hotel.

Pamela’s Perspective

If you want to lunch or dine at a beautiful neighboring castle (not a hotel), which is under the same management as Château St. Gerlach, make a reservation at Château Neercanne.


Château St. Gerlach

A 17th-century noble estate/monastery


Joseph Corneli Allée 1
6301 KK Valkenburg aan de Geul
Tel: ++31 (0)43 608 88 88
Fax: ++31 (0)43 604 28 83
Hotel website
Reserve with

Fast facts

97 rooms, suites, and apartments

Double rooms: from 175 euros
Suites: from 200 euros
Rates do not include occupancy tax or breakfast.
Packages available.

Open: all year

Getting there

From the A2, north of Maastricht, take the A79 motorwayeast towards Valkenburg/Heerlen. Take exit 2 towards Meerssen/Houthem. Continue for 2 km through Houthem and look for hotel sign on right.
The hotel will pick you up at Maastricht’s central train station or you can take a commuter train from there two stops to Houthem.

What to do

On site: spa; swimming pool; ballooning; bike riding; clay pigeon shooting; Ingendael Nature Reserve
Nearby: golf; skiing; tennis; horseback riding; wine tasting; cooking workshops; Maastricht; Aachen


If you have ever dreamed about living in a Dutch country estate, this is the place to do it. Everything about this graceful château is first rate: the rooms, the grounds, the food, and the service.

Guest rooms are spread out over three separate buildings. Most are found in the former Farmhouse. Decor is luxury country style. All rooms have views, but not all rooms have air conditioning.

The original convent holds 13 of the suites, while 26 apartment suites can be found in the granary. Each suite is unique in character. Two of tower suites are split level, with a romantic winding staircase leading to the bedroom above.

If you’re traveling with your family or wish to enjoy a longer stay, you might take a look at the apartment suites, with either one bedroom or two bedrooms. These have a living room, kitchenette, with most featuring a balcony with views of the Geul Valley.

Three of the reception rooms in the original estate living quarters now accommodate a restaurant. A formal dining room, “Château St. Gerlach” features delicious, French-inspired cuisine from either a set or a la carte menu. Not quite as fancy, but still elegant, is the “Bistrot de Liège,” which serves lunch and dinner. The latter is open seven days a week.

Something special

curlicue Gorgeous setting and grounds with baroque gardens, fruit tree arboretum, rose garden, and park.