Hitler’s Lair to become Poland’s Next Big Tourist Attraction

 @MarkJohansonIBT
on January 19 2012 11:09 AM
The Wolf's Lair was one of Hitler’s main headquarters during the Second World War
The Wolf's Lair was one of Hitler’s main headquarters during World War II. YouTube

Officials in Poland are looking for investors to help create the nation's next big tourist attraction: Hitler's Liar.

The Wolf's Lair as it is known served as one of Hitler's key military headquarters during World War II and was partially destroyed by Nazi forces as they retreated in early 1945. The site's name refers to Hitler's nickname, Mr. Wolf.

Set deep in the heart of a forest in north-eastern Poland, forestry workers are looking for an investor to help make the Nazi leader's ruined fortress more accessible for holidaymakers.

Interested parties have until Jan. 27 to submit their application for the property.

Some 180,000 tourists from Poland and abroad visit the site each year, and the entire plot encompasses 32 acres. Potential investors would be obliged to pay a minimum rent of $140,000 annually.

The camouflaged complex sits in the Masurian woodlands near the town of Ketryn in what was once German East Prussia and is the site of the assassination attempt on Hitler by Colonel Claus von Stauffenberg - popularized by the 2008 Tom Cruise film Valkyrie.

The hideout consisted of 80 buildings and housed more than 2,000 security personnel including Hermann Göring, Martin Bormann, Wilhelm Keitel and Alfred Jodl at its peak and is now owned by the Polish Forestry Commission (PFC). It is currently open to the public, but does not attract many visitors because it is tucked away deep in the forest near the Russian border and is accessible only by a poorly maintained dirt road.

Staff have said that they are looking for investors to help build a museum and put Hitler's Lair on the tourist map.

We are waiting for offers, but so far we have none, local forestry official Zenon Piotrowicz told Reuters.

The requirements are quite high because we want a new leaseholder to invest a lot, particularly in a museum with an exhibition that could be open all year long.

Hitler's Lair was built from 1940-1941 to protect top Nazi officials from air bombardment during Operation Barbarossa, the invasion of the Soviet Union. It had its own power plant and even a railway station. It was also surrounded by a minefield that took 10 years to clear after the war.

Have a look at the property in the video below:

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