top of page

Höhenklinik Valbella Davos

Contemporary documents



  • In 1898, a merchant named Hirsch was the owner of “Hirsch’s International Sanatorium” at Mühlestrasse 19 in Davos Dorf. The owners changed.

  • In 1912 it was named “Sanatorium Dr.” after its chief physician. Philippi AG”. The building served as a template for the life and love story of Hans Castorp in Thomas Mann's famous novel "The Magic Mountain", although Mann never lived there.

  • During the First World War, the “Association for German Warrior Welfare in Switzerland” collected money and bought the house on February 23, 1918; the sanatorium was now called “Deutsches Kriegerkurhaus”. 230 veterans suffering from tuberculosis took their treatment here. After Hitler came to power, he made the “regional group leader” of the German National Socialist Party in Switzerland, Wilhelm Gustloff, chairman of the board of directors. David Frankfurter, a young man from the Yugoslav town of Vinkovci - he had studied in Germany and was thrown out because he was Jewish - wanted to make a statement. He went to Davos. On the evening of February 4, 1936, he rang Gustloff's doorbell. When Wilhelm Gustloff came through the door, the little young man drew his pistol and fired five times.

  • In 1956 the clinic was renamed “Valbella Davos High-Altitude Clinic”. The Federal Republic of Germany became the host. She had the dome tower torn down, a flat roof put in and the imposing building modernized with lots of concrete. But the time of tuberculosis sanatoriums was over; the widespread disease tuberculosis seemed to have been overcome. Davos changed its ways and sports hotels opened. And new sick people came to Davos: allergy sufferers and asthmatics. The “Valbella Davos Altitude Clinic” became a specialist clinic for treating the respiratory tract, especially for asthmatics.

  • On October 27, 2004 it was announced that the Federal Republic of Germany would definitely close the clinic at the end of November 2004. The building was empty for many years.

  • HSR Real Estate AG bought the property in 2012.


  • In spring 2023 it became known that the owner wanted to demolish the building and create mixed-use apartments for ownership, rent and cooperative rent on the extensive site. Between 120 and 150 residential units are to be built, exclusively for people living in Davos.

  • If the project passes the vote on the partial revision of the zoning plan scheduled for spring 2024 and everything goes according to plan, construction should begin in spring 2025. The apartments could not be occupied until the end of 2027 at the earliest; an investment sum of around 70 million francs is expected.

bottom of page