He’s been Ischgl’s mayor since 2010 and thinks the “Relax if you can” advertising slogan is a very appropriate description of this Alpine hotspot. Trisanna meets Werner Kurz, teacher and lover of winter.


Werner Kurz

57, born in Zams

Place of residence

Mayor (since 2010). Qualified teacher on unpaid leave.

Married to Beatrix since 1990, son Daniel (born in 1991).

What makes the community of Ischgl different from other towns in Paznaun?
Due to the development of tourism in the last fifty years, I think of Ischgl as a Paznaun hotspot. This creates synergies for the neighbouring communities in the valley, too.

What have been the most important decisions for the community in the past ten years?
The building of the cultural centre and the parking lounge, as well as the installation of the artificial avalanche trigger system.

Ischgl in one word

What lies at the heart of the village community?
Our forty clubs and associations ensure we have voluntary action, good community spirit, and social cohesion.

Where do you see the community of Ischgl in ten years’ time?
Hopefully at the same high level as today.

What role does tourism play in the community?
Marketing Ischgl to the outside world.

Where do local people in Ischgl meet up?
Mostly in the community cultural centre.

Which advertising slogan best characterises the community?
Relax if you can

What’s the most important quality a mayor should have?
He has to be cooperative, focused on the future and always present

What does it take to be on a first-name basis with you (and use the informal “du”)?
In the mountains, it’s traditional to be on a first-name basis in conversation

What’s the most beautiful time of year for you?
The winter

What’s your favourite expression in the Paznaun dialect?
Haba (to make hay)

What’s your favourite place in Ischgl/Paznaun?
Piz Valgronda (a wonderful view of Fimba)

The most important personal changes in the past ten years?
My election as mayor in 2010