The Yurt (4)


Things are happening in Lech. When Zayad Shah's nomadic Kyrgyz tent makes a guest appearance in Lech - this year from 14 th of December for the second time - Arlberg guests have a different idea of what a living room should offer



So far at The Yurt: sometimes guests feel so comfortable in the handmade, Kyrgyz yurt that they don't just come on one evening of their holiday week, but several times. But it can also happen that guests with an affinity for music link up - wisely after the host has released the speakers - and play their private playlist to the best of their ability. This is the exception, but the English guest DJ, who did this for two consecutive days, did not call The Yurt his favourite living room in the world for nothing.

Just don´t call the yurt an igloo

It may have something to do with the fact that "there's an igloo like no other on the whole Arlberg" - or so a German couple was advised. They open the wooden door, tilt their heads slightly to get inside the red-painted willow dome, which is bigger than it looks from the outside, and see people in T-shirts. The fireplace crackles, the Japanese Roku gin mixes with the great tonic from Le Tribute. Before you know it and have awakened the other spirits from the Japanese "House of Suntory", (Toki Whiskey or Haku Vodka) the time spent is a good one. It was no different for the German couple when they came back with the rest of their family, from their 20-year-old grandchildren to their 80-year-old grandparents.

Time out for digital nomads

During the summer, Kyrgyz nomads move from one pasture to the next, while during the winter months they usually stay in the same place for 4 - 5 months. They come to rest. You can do this particularly well in The Yurt. If you venture inside, you will notice that the charm of this round living room might have a lot to do with its host Zayad Shah and his understanding of lived communication. Whether from the Alpine region or from overseas, guests enjoy talking to him and his team at least as much as meeting real people again away from Zoom. They sense that exciting conversations are lurking just one armchair away. 

Simplicity before stars

A deliberately simple nomad tent in the middle of Lech, on the forecourt of the renowned 5* Superior Hotel Arlberg. Even in the second season of The Yurt, this is still an announcement on the Arlberg, arousing curiosity among guests from all over the world. The tent is operated with low power and wood for the fireplace. The yurt's felt blanket stores the heat well. It gets warmer with each new guest, a maximum of 35. The CO2 footprint remains exemplary. No wonder that the directors of the Hotel Arlberg Benjamin Schneider and Patrick Krummenacher were taken with the concept of the yurt: "The Yurt is a refreshing addition to Lech and the offer of our hotel. Guests come to the tent for a drink before dinner or for a nightcap afterwards," says Benjamin Schneider, "Like us, Zayad Shah focuses on quality, understatement and the joy of hosting." 

Meets well

As young as the history of the yurt is so far, the temporary bar has already developed into an event space. The tent can be used in many ways, for example for fireside chats on the future of gastronomy and tourism, private or corporate parties or as a space for pop-up shops. With a bit of luck, you will visit the yurt exactly when friends of Zayad Shah are visiting, such as Silvia Gattin, who will again be using the tent as a pop-up shop for her label on 5 and 6 January. Or on one of the evenings when winemakers who are on the deliberately small drinks menu, such as Jürgen Trummer or Johanna Markowitsch, present their wines and host the tent together with Zayad Shah.

Low tech, high feel

When you realise how well a yurt fits into the respective landscape, that no area is sealed or destroyed and that a yurt can be dismantled within one or two days, Zayad Shah opens up potentials that make you want more. For as good as it is to rest in The Yurt, it is also possible to do so much more privately. For example, in a glamping variant, a more glamorous version of camping. Those who appreciate the temporary bar are also open to spending a few nights in it in the right environment and entering even deeper into nomadic life. One thing is certain: with The Yurt, something has opened that is not only good for Lech. Where the journey will take us remains to be seen. 

From PR Manager to host of THE YURT

The idea of a bar concept in a yurt - the classic home of nomads in Kyrgyzstan, among other places - migrated with Zayad Shah from Gstaad in Switzerland to Lech in Austria. Zayad Shah has travelled a lot himself and can combine his passion for communication and gastronomy with The Yurt. Already in his school days at the tourism school in Bad Ischl, he worked for several years as a barman at the KuK - Hofbeisl, studied communication sciences in Salzburg, then moved to Vienna and worked for eight years as a PR manager for an international cosmetics company. In search of new inspiration, he joined the start-up Happy Plates for a short time and later took a detour into the coffee business as brand manager. The bridge to gastronomy was thus almost built again. When friends in Switzerland came up with the idea of setting up a yurt for six weeks, he accepted their invitation to help shape the project as a barman. With The Yurt, he has returned to his professional roots on the one hand, and on the other, a space has been created in which communication can be lived together in a relaxed atmosphere on 30 square metres. 

Opening hours

14 th of December 2021- until Easter weekend in April 2022 
(can vary because of Covid 19)


Tuesday - Sunday from 4 pm till 11 pm 
(opening hours can vary because of Covid 19) 

Social Media & Website

Find us on Instagram @theyurt_at

Find us on Facebook  @theyurtat



Zayad Shah

Owner & Host at The Yurt

Mobil: +43 650 55 11 263