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News from our ski school in Gastein

35 Years Ski School Dorfgastein


Committed to winter sports

35 years of the Ski School Dorfgastein. 35 years of experiencing the extraordinary. 35 years full of experiences & emotions. 35 years of beaming children’s eyes. 35 years of adventure. 35 years of nature. 35 years of happy guests. 35 years of action & fun while skiing in Gastein!


Excellent quality for satisfied guests

Austria’s ski schools enjoy an excellent reputation worldwide and the Ski School Holleis in Dorfgastein has made a major contribution in this regard. As the premier ski school in Gastein, it is our goal to meet the highest standards. Satisfied clients and the many distinctions and awards our successful ski school in Dorfgastein has received are clear evidence of that. High standards of quality and our well-trained team make the Ski School Dorfgastein Holleis one of the best ski schools in Austria!


A thank-you to all guests

We are very proud to be celebrating 35 years of our ski school in Dorfgastein! It is unbelievable to see everything that has happened during this time. We thank our guests sincerely for their years of loyalty and are always happy to see new faces! A lot has happened over the past three decades. Besides including almost all kinds of winter sports in our course programme, the family business itself has been extended to many fields over the past 35 years.


Innovation for 35 years

Among the most extensive innovations are two children’s areas – the Gasti-Snowpark and Mini-Land – installed specifically for your littlest skiers, and the ski kindergarten by the valley station. We were also the first ski school in Gastein to invest in our own ski carousel and conveyor belt - a testimony to our innovative spirit and quality standards even back then. Today, the Ski School Holleis in Dorfgastein has three ski conveyor belts, one ski carousel and many modern state-of-the-art teaching aids. Other investments during the 35-year history of the Ski School Dorfgastein were our snowmaking facility, a snowmobile for guest transport, a play and warm up room in the children’s area and a dining room at the middle station.


How everything started in the alpine Gastein

Ski sports have a longstanding history and tradition in Gastein. The first locals were on skis in the early 1900. The first local ski club in Dorfgastein was founded in 1848. Back then, there were no special ski lifts, which is why ski touring, ski jumping and, in particular, Nordic skiing became the main focus. The first lift in Dorfgastein, the Brandsteinbahn single-rope lift , was built in 1960, the same year in which the Dorfgasteiner Berglift GmbH was founded. The ski school in Dorfgastein was founded as a training ground for the ever-increasing numbers of tourists just two years later.


How the ski school in Dorfgastein came about

The first ski school in Dorfgastein was founded in 1962 by Hans Friesenegg, proving his pioneering spirit for economic progress in the Gastein Valley. A native of Bad Gastein, he managed the ski school for 22 years, employing six local ski instructors on average during the winter season. Due to seasonal fluctuation, the ski school was only open during the school holidays in the first founding years. Dorfgastein’s Johann Holleis took over the ski school in Dorfgastein in 1984. He had previously worked for the Ski School Bad Gastein as a skiing instructor and as a ski trainer for the Austrian national ski team (ÖSV). Hans Holleis was also an avid judoka, enjoying success in many national and international contests during his career.


Dorfgastein becomes a popular ski resort

Equipped with a healthy dose of idealism and zest for action, the state-certified ski instructor and ski guide helped to make Dorfgastein a popular and well-known winter sports destination among both guests from Austria and abroad alike. Johann Holleis gave the Dutch people a taste for winter sports in Salzburg during promotional events and dry skiing courses in Rotterdam. The clever ski school manager also attracted attention and important contacts as the chairman of the local avalanche warning commission for 20 years and as the chairman of the life-guard association in Dorfgastein.


Gastein’s first ski kindergarten

As part of the celebrations to mark the 25th anniversary in 1985, the first ski kindergarten in Gastein was opened together with the Dorfgasteiner Bergbahnen AG. This unique offering in the province of Salzburg was a milestone in the children’s programme as another investment in outstanding quality.


The Ski School Dorfgastein Holleis today

Johann Holleis has successfully managed the ski school with his son Philipp since 2010. Philipp Holleis studied sport and motricity science in Innsbruck and qualified as a state-certified ski instructor and ski guide. He completed his ski trainer education during his sports studies and served on the board of directors of the Dorfgasteiner Bergbahnen AG for eight years.

Philipp Holleis was a successful alpine ski racer in his childhood and switched to snowboarding as a teen, taking part in numerous halfpipe contests. Among his greatest successes were several World Cup top 10 rankings, a Europe Cup win, vice state champion title and winning silver during the Winter Universiade (Olympics for students) in Innsbruck/Seefeld in 2005.


The business areas

Today, the Ski School Dorfgastein is divided into five areas: a ski school for adults, a children’s ski school, a snowboard school, private lessons and trend sports. With skiing, snowboarding, ski touring off-piste, telemark and cross-country skiing – the Ski School Dorfgastein Holleis offers suitable winter sport entertainment for everyone and has since become one of the most important service providers in Dorfgastein. Best of all, the snow sports instructors infect their students with their enthusiasm for winter sports every day anew.


Guests become friends

Today, the up to 40 ski instructors feel bound to the long family tradition and work hard every winter to remain the best in the future. Thanks to a strong affinity to the region and the friendly relationship between instructors and students, the ski school in Dorfgastein welcomes numerous guests every year.


Thank you very much!

In our anniversary year, we would like to thank our partner companies, faithful employees and, above all, the Dorfgasteiner Bergbahnen AG in advance! Without their tireless work, Dorfgastein wouldn’t have become one of the most successful winter sports destinations in Austria. 35 years of the Ski School Holleis in Dorfgastein – we hope for many more breathtaking years!

Become a part of our ski school history and book your first course in Dorfgastein at We’re already looking forward to meeting you!

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