World's Smallest Hotel dates from a homeownership requirement for marriage licenses

Eh'häusl ("Little Wedding House") is the "world's smallest hotel," located in Amberg, north of Munich. It dates to an 18th century ordinance that required couples to own a house before they got married, so some clever fellow slapped a roof and walls up to enclose a narrow alleyway between two other buildings. It wasn't intended to be livable, but rather to satisfy the formal requirement of "home ownership" for a marriage license. The house was passed from non-owning couple to non-owning couple for generations, and thus marriages continued in Amberg.

There is no reliable record of how long the practice continued, but the building survived, and in 2008 it received a complete refurbishment, transforming it into a luxury hotel. Total size? 56 square meters. Maximum number of guests at any one time? Two. [Google street view]

But there's more! According to an old legend told by the locals, couples who spend their wedding night at the tiny hotel are guaranteed* to live happily ever after and never get divorced!

(Image: Rode/Summer)


      1. Yeah, who’d be foolish enough to stick with such an old-fashioned system as the Imperial one?? I mean, non-equal unit sizes at different magnituedes, what the hell eh? (btw, it’s Imperial, not American).

  1. My brother-in-law renovated a house a few years ago.  The house was originally 320 square feet, if I recall correctly.  The lady who bought it was told by her bank said it was too small to be financed and needed to be enlarged.  

    Aside from other renovations, he lifted the roof up, added a partial 2nd floor (at about 2/3 of the first floor, and dropped the roof back down.  My guesstimate is that it would have ended it up at about 56 square meters.

  2. The smallest may be The JailHouse Inn in Sierra Madre… from their website “The entire space is about 200 square feet—we have been deemed the smallest [ and we think—the cutest! ] Hotel in the U.S. -“

  3. I’ve met several participants in the small house movement and was lucky enough to visit one in the Bay over the summer. It looked like a gypsy caravan wagon  parked behind a brick house in south of Oakland. A husband, wife, two sons and a morbidly obese persian cat lived there.The house cost 20K to build and was so clean and airy, compact and smart. When my four kids move out I’d like to retire in a small house and now I’m considering making one for a hotel! Watch out KOA cabins!

Comments are closed.