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Kitzbühel and skiing – a timeless combination tied to a legend. The most legendary sports town in the Alps has been making skiing history for 120 years. Today, the Kitzbühel mountains are also a popular destination for snowboarders, freeriders and ski tourers.
The first documented ski trips were taken by Franz Reisch on the Kitzbüheler Horn in 1893. In 1924, a commission was given the task of establishing a cable car project on the Hahnenkamm. Bergbahn AG Kitzbühel was founded in 1928. One year later, the first Hahnenkammbahn cable car was opened.
Construction work on the first hotel in Kitzbühel was completed in 1903. The hotel opened with the name Hotel Kitzbühel and later became known as Grand Hotel. Two years later, the first Tirolean ski championships were held and the first downhill race on the Kitzbüheler Horn took place the following year. The first gondola lift in Austria – the Hahnenkammbahn cable car – was constructed between 1926 and 1928.
In winter 1931, the first Hahnenkamm race finally took place on the Streif. Shortly after the Second World War in 1948, the world’s first Skizirkus, a continuous circuit on skis, opened. The ski area had virtually reached its present-day size by 1959, following the construction of a supply line to the Kitzbüheler Horn in 1951 and the expansion of the ski resort to Kirchberg, Jochberg and Pass Thurn in 1959. In 1969, Bergbahn AG Kitzbühel merged with Berg- und Skilift GmbH and Kirchberger Bergbahnen AG. This marked the opening of the Kitzbühel|Kirchberg wider ski area offering the best pistes into the valley.
Legends and champions
Kitzbühel has been and is home to numerous legends and has produced a series of heroes and champions. From Sailer, Molterer, Leitner and Hinterseer to Gandler, Kitzbühel is a town of great sports personalities. And, year after year, it hosts sports events, which enable the town to continue writing history.