7 Lakes Series – Living at Lake Attersee
Data & Facts
Lake Attersee is the largest and third deepest inland lake in Austria. Its water surface is 46.2 square kilometers and its deepest point is 169 meters. It is 469 meters above sea level and has a length of 19.7 kilometers and a width of 3.4 kilometers. Its crystal clear water is of drinking quality.
To the south of the lake, the rock faces of the Schafberg and the Höllengebirge mountains rise up and offer a dreamlike hiking landscape. On the opposite side it is surrounded by rolling hills and forests.
To support their houses, the first settlers set logs in the ground on the shores of Lake Attersee more than 5,000 years ago. Pile-dwelling settlements developed, spreading mainly along shallower shore areas. However, in the Copper Age the settlement activity on the shore was terminated – because of the rise of the lake level.
The foundation stone for the lake as a vacation region was laid by the Romans when they discovered it for themselves. On the eastern shore a Roman road ran through the Weißenbach valley and in Weyregg there are remains of a Villa Rustica with mosaics. In addition, there was a royal court called Atterhofen on the Attersee Kirchberg, which appeared for the first time on a document in 885. Frankish kings hosted the court several times. Gustav Klimt also took a liking to Attersee – a large part of his landscape paintings originated from his time in the vacation region, where he spent his summers from 1900 to 1916. The landscape painters Rudolf von Alt and Franz Steinfeld also created paintings depicting the Attersee landscape.
The region became more popular with impressionism. In the Belle Époque it exploded into the center of summer resorts. Albert Weisgerber painted what is probably his best-known self-portrait at Attersee in 1911. Gustav Mahler also spent summers at the Attersee. He drew inspiration for his compositions from the surrounding area and owned his own composer’s cottage on the lakeshore.
Another noteworthy part of the history of the Attersee region was rafting, which was practiced for centuries. An ingenious system was set up for the transport of timber, as transport proved to be complicated in some places. Oxen and hydraulic elevators were used. However, with the expansion of the road network and the construction of power plants on the rivers, rafting eventually ceased altogether in the mid-20th century. A raftsmen’s monument on the lake promenade in Kammer commemorates the former transhipment point.
At best, the careful development has left the Attersee as a natural paradise – blossoming trees, meadows and forests as far as the eye can see – a mixture of the pure feeling of nature and the intimacy with art and music.
Tourism & Sports
The Attersee region is the second largest in the Salzkammergut and is home to 352 tourism businesses, which bring in around 675,00 overnight stays annually.
The lake is also home to the oldest sailing club in Austria and is very popular among sailors. In addition, you can enjoy scuba diving and a variety of water activities year-round:
- Water Ski
- Banana rafting
- Stand-Up Paddling
- Paddle surfing
- Moonlight ride
- Motorboat cab
- Regatta training
But the region also offers something for athletes from other areas:
- Bike tours along the Attersee
- Golf with panoramic view
In addition to the incredible number of activity performances, there are also some cultural events such as theAttergau New Year’s Concert or the Gustav Mahler Festival. Internationally known are also the racing bike events “King Of The Lake” and “Race Around Austria”.
In conversation with FindMyHome CEO Bernd Gabel-Hlawa, the two real estate experts Peter Pimmingstorfer and Walter Mairinger provide insight into the current real estate situation at Lake Attersee.
What makes living at the Attersee so special and where does the uniqueness of the Attersee lie from your point of view?
Peter Pimmingstorfer: Lake Attersee is beautifully situated at the beginning of the Salzkammergut and is therefore very easy to reach from all directions. In addition, there is a very good infrastructure including culture and leisure activities. I would particularly emphasize the crystal clear water with its deep turquoise color in summer, the recreational value is sensational especially for water sports enthusiasts, sailors and golfers.
Walter Mairinger: Quite simply – the lake is ideally located in the middle of Austria, it can be reached from Vienna, Munich and Innsbruck within two hours, and there are also two airports in the vicinity that are only 45 minutes away. It is also Austria’s largest. – and perhaps even the most beautiful – inland lake.
What trend do you see for properties at Attersee?
PP: Of course, the trend of rising property prices is also clearly visible here. Again and again, very interesting properties come onto the market, but demand far exceeds supply.
WM: There’s an extremely strong demand for smaller units – whether it’s a house or an apartment – right on the lake. Supply is tight, prices continue to rise. The current circumstances with high inflation, virtually zero interest rates, a highly volatile national and international political situation are of course additional fuel for this fire in the market.
What is this trend based on?
PP: It is based on recreational value, infrastructure and accessibility via the Westautobahn from almost all directions.
WM: Lakefront properties have been safe investments for decades, and the return is the lifestyle of living by the water and a stable increase in property values.
Are there any reasons to believe that this trend could change?
PP: At the moment, it looks more like this trend will continue to strengthen.
WM: No, even rising interest rates will not stop this trend.
What is the profile of the classic buyer at Attersee – who is your primary target group?
PP: In the upper price category, these are primarily entrepreneurs, doctors and freelancers, as well as people who want to spend their retirement where others go on vacation.
WM: Successful Austrian entrepreneurs and freelancers. People who work successfully and create something for themselves and their families.
In the luxury segment, people never like to talk about prices – can you nevertheless give me an overview of the prices per square meter directly on the lake and second row?
PP: Directly on the waterfront, lover’s prices are currently being paid, however, there are more affordable options especially for lake view or lakefront properties. Properties have been very stable in price over the past few years and have also increased extremely in very good locations.
WM: You can’t lump things together here. The decisive factors are the configuration, the location and, of course, the extent to which it is possible to build on it. Smaller areas then also cost well over 7,000/m². In the case of the larger areas, there are mostly green areas on the waterfront, so that a valuation in zones must take place here. The building land behind is to be valued here rather with 4,000 euros/m², the upstream areas only with about 30 %. In the second row, the decisive factor is the quality of the location paired with a possible buildability or the existing environment. But we see here already prices above € 1.000,–/m².
Are houses, apartments or plots of land currently the most sought after, or is there a clear favorite?
PP: No favorites can be identified here; demand remains very high in all areas.
WM: Mainly buildable, small plots of land are sought or those with old stock. And apartments on the lake.
Especially in the Salzkammergut there is – so it seems to me with lake properties a higher off-market offer, than transparent offers – do you think this makes sense and why are especially in this region from your point of view the off-market offers so desired by the seller? Internationally, this is unusual and also in other exclusive locations in Austria, such as in the Carinthian lake regions, one tends to move away from off-market offers, i.e. properties and prices are presented transparently in selected media.
PP: Off-market often results from the fact that we have a very large pre-market list. On the one hand, many people appreciate our discretion and market potential. On the other hand, real estate seekers trust us to approach them exclusively in advance with appropriate offers.
WM: Lakefront property owners want to sell their beautiful pieces discreetly to get the highest price. And that leads many away from circuits on the grid.
We notice on FINDMYHOME.AT/Premium Living a very strong increase in demand for lakefront properties. Is this also reflected in the growth in the value of luxury real estate on Lake Attersee? If so, what has been the price trend over the last three years?
PP: Directly on the waterfront, lover’s prices are paid and have also increased extremely in very good locations.
WM: We’ve had increases of up to one hundred percent in individual cases over the last three years!
Has the demand for properties with lake views, but not directly on the lake, increased just as much?
PP: For lake view or lakefront properties, we haven’t seen as extreme an increase as waterfront in recent years. But here, too, there were enormous price increases.
WM: Yes, there is a very strong increase in demand here as well.
Do you think there will be more buy-to-let models in the region in the future?
PP: We don’t think so. The trend is toward owner-occupancy, and the extreme price increases of the past mean that this model is not as profitable for hotel operators either. The situation is different for classic property development projects, which can be placed in good locations as soon as they are announced. Here we have also been able to help many customers gain access to the lake in recent years.
WM: There may be isolated projects like this. However, since new hotels in the region are viewed extremely critically anyway, I do not expect a large supply here.
What does the current offer at the Attersee look like?
PP: There is very little available directly on the waterfront, but it looks a little better for lake view properties or properties close to the lake. Of course, many people would like to acquire a valuable investment here or spend time where others go on vacation.
WM: At the moment, as far as I know, there is no approved buy-to-let model at Attersee.
Living at lake Attersee: Buy real estate at lake Wolfgangsee
Living at Austria’s lakes: Buy real estate at Austria’s lakes