Rhine Romanticism

“To Bacharach by the Rhine” is how Clemens Brentano began his famous poem about the legendary Lore Lay in 1801. The Romantics’ enthusiasm for the wild and unspoilt nature of the Middle Rhine Valley knew no bounds. With this enthusiasm, the Romanticum exhibition also wants to inspire visitors and invites them to come aboard the ‘MS Rheinromantik’.

An unromantic place

First of all, the location seemed completely unromantic for the planned UNESCO World Heritage Visitor Centre Upper Middle Rhine Valley: a lightless basement, which reminded more of an underground car park than of Rhine romanticism, had to be used and connected with a tourist information centre on the ground floor. After a concept and feasibility study, in which we explored the opportunities and possibilities for the project, we won the competition to implement it and linked the exhibition and tourist information with an innovative compass system in terms of content.

The Rhine panorama

The scenic backdrop of the Rhine, with its rugged cliffs and lonely castle ruins, touched the soul of the Romantics and became a projection screen for their longings. Taking up the idea of the scenic, we brought a 25-metre-long Rhine panorama, like a paper theatre, into the exhibition. Visitors take a Rhine steamer from the 19th century and immerse themselves in a daily routine on board: an interplay of interior design, light, sound and colour design as well as numerous media exhibits combine to create a playful overall experience of Rhine Romanticism.

The Compass

The exhibition complements the tourist information service and creates a link to the region by making it possible to experience the region’s attractions and point out places of interest. A special feature is the compass: visitors can use the QR code on their admission tickets to download recommendations and information from various stations on a personal microsite, which can then be accessed via the Romanticum homepage. The result is a very personal travel guide – with a few specials, of course. The Romanticum was nominated for the Tourism Award 2014.

Tourist Information

We also designed the official Koblenz Tourist Information Office on the ground floor of the Forum Confluentes and linked it to the exhibition in terms of both space and content. Visitors are welcomed and advised at elegant white counters. Right next to them, the entrance to the exhibition is almost fluid: A landing stage with suitcases invites visitors to board the MS Rheinromantik one floor below.


Project development

  • Feasibility study
  • Economical analysis
  • Visit forecast

Conception and scenography

  • Concept positioning and thematic definition
  • Development of dramaturgy and main idea
  • Content development and exhibition conception
  • Media conception and storyboarding
  • Development of interactive exhibits

Design and planning

  • Interior design
  • Exhibition design and planning in all project phases
  • Development of a Corporate Identity
  • Graphics and guidance systems
  • exhibits and furniture

Project management and implementation

  • Project management (all phases)
  • Tenders and awarding
  • Production supervision and cost management
  • Content management and content production

Project information

Client: Koblenz Touristik (Eigenbetrieb der Stadt Koblenz)
Execution period: 08/2011 – 06/2013
Exhibition area: 1.300 sqm

Contact person

Jan Löken

Executive Management