North sea isle

An Island Gets a Makeover

norderney lighthouse blickwinkel
Island in the breeze.
  • Why it matters

    Why it matters

    Norderney is changing its image from a chilly weather-beaten North Sea island to a luxury holiday resort – thanks to the efforts of two brothers.

  • Facts


    • The Brune family has been active on the East Frisian Island for four generations.
    • It owns several hotels and spas on the island, several of which were renovated by brothers Marc and Jens Brune.
    • The island is the oldest seaside resort in Germany and was once the summer residence of the King of Hanover.
  • Audio


  • Pdf

Sunlight shines on the waves at the shore while at a pool nearby, it looks as though a swimmer is heading out into the ocean. A waiter places a drink alongside the deck chair, while in the restaurant downstairs, a cook prepares a gourmet meal.

No, it’s not the Hôtel du Cap-Eden-Roc in Antibes – it’s the Seesteg Hotel on the island of Norderney in the North Sea.

It was built by two brothers, determined to bring luxury to this chilly outpost of Germany.

Jens and Marc run Brune & Company, which also operates the Milk Bar on the island, located in the East Frisian Islands chain off Germany’s northwest coast. From its fireside, visitors can look over the stormy seas.

They also run a range of other properties such as a two-story apartment on the island, complete with a free standing bathtub next to a floor-to-ceiling window so bathers can look out across the beach promenade.

This rural residence with cosmopolitan charm is a sign of change for the island of Norderney.

Want to keep reading?

Subscribe now or log in to read our coverage of Europe’s leading economy.