St. Gerlachuskerk

Culture

St. Gerlach Museum and Treasury

Nestled in the Geul Valley, Château St. Gerlach enjoys a long and illustrious past. The first traces of the property date back to 1201, when it is alleged that in order to provide travelling pilgrims with a place of rest, Gosewijn IV of Valkenburg decided to build a monastery near the grave of the celebrated hermit Gerlachus. Throughout the 13th and 14th centuries the monastery became a draw for monks and nuns, particularly from distinguished descent, and in 1345 it became a convent for daughters of noble families.

After widespread religious disruption caused by the French revolution, the estate was sold and became privately owned by a string of noble families. After the last aristocratic resident, Robert De Selys de Fanson died in 1979 the estate buildings, except for the St. Gerlachus church, were left empty and became dilapidated. In 1995 Camille Oostwegel was granted permission to transform the estate into a luxury hotel and restaurant, with Château St. Gerlach, a member of Relais & Châteaux, finally opening in 1997.

Between 2007-08, the church underwent a total renovation, restoring the magnificent frescoes, painted by Johann Adam Schöpf (1707 -1772) to their former glory. The parish also benefitted from a new presbytery, catechism room, sacristy and Gerlach chapel. In 2009 the St. Gerlach Museum and Treasury opened, displaying precious artefacts, such as the ancient tunic used to wrap the hallowed bones of St. Gerlachus.

The St. Gerlach Museum and Treasury is open Monday to Thursday from 10:00 to 17:00 and on Sunday from 10:30 to 17:00. From November to February the museum closes at 16:30.