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The old mountain pass on Ljubelj used to be a place that divided two nations. Today, old Ljubelj is a place that unites them. Credit for this deserves Silvo Mirko Tischler, PhD, who bought the mountain hut on Ljubelj 18 months ago and, with the helping hand of his wife Martina, turned it into a pleasant gathering spot for people from Slovenia and Austria.

The mountain hut Koča Stari Loibl Hütte, with two obelisks, dating from 1728, in front of it.

Silvo Tischler is closely connected with both countries. He is Slovene on his mother’s side and Austrian on his father’s side but in his soul he claims to be a ‘European’. His roots are the reason for his enthusiasm to make the hut Koča Stari Loibl Hütte a place where Slovenes and Austrians can meet in a friendly atmosphere. A place where there are no boundaries, not even those in people’s minds; where there are only people who are searching for their piece of paradise on Earth, away from the everyday hustle and bustle of the valley.

The name of the hut itself, “Stari Loibl” suggests connectedness, for it consists of both Slovene and Austrian words.

Silvo Tischler was also one of the main initiators of the event ‘dance without borders’, an event on old Ljubelj that was first organized a year before Slovenia entered the European Union and has been a tradition ever since. Eleven years later he decided to buy the mountain hut on old Ljubelj. “As I am a hunter I intended to build a hunting lodge on the alpine meadow Kal at first, but then the Koren family suggested I take over this hut,” Tischler says, explaining his decision.

Angelina and Aleš Grum, Martina Tischler, Herbert Jesenko and Silvo Tischler.

Together with Slovene and Austrian co-workers he has renovated it in a natural way, considering the architectural basis of the old hut, and providing a self-sufficient environmentally-friendly electricity and water supply for the hut. The interior of the hut is characterised by the past of old Ljubelj, as well as by Silvo Tischler’s touch, while the additional feeling of homeliness and warmth comes from the decorations of Tischler’s wife Martina.

The center piece of the hut is an indoor brick furnace decorated with tiles that include symbols associated with Silvo Tischler and all of the people who helped create the new story of the mountain hut on Ljubelj.

Tischler entrusted the keeping of the hut to Aleš Grum. Aleš and his team work hard all year round to make sure hikers feel comfortable, and Toni Kavčič meets the hungry guests’ needs.

Chef Toni Kavčič, owner Silvo Tischler and keeper of the hut Aleš Grum.

One can often hear all the guests singing together, either Slovene or Austrian songs. “It is my wish that cultural meetings for people from both sides of the Ljubelj are organized here,” says Silvo Tischler. The meetings would become a regular part of events on old Ljubelj, the Hrast Memorial of Oldtimers being one of them.

In winter the mountain hut is an idyll, and the road leading to the hut serves as a sledging area.

Photos: Koča-Hütte STARI LOIBL


Stari Ljubelj

Podljubel 320

SI-4290 Tržič

T: +386 (0) 51 818 797

T: +386 (0) 41 603 269

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