History VILLA SERWEST

Villa SERWEST has a rich history.
In the village of Serwest it is also called “The Green Villa”, “The Castle” or “The Manor House”. However, it is neither green, nor a castle nor a manor house. One thing though is certain: it is located in the village of Serwest, nestled amidst the most beautiful landscapes in Brandenburg.
Serwest is a typical Brandenburg street village, it was built in the 13th century as a Slavic settlement. Since 1375 the place was called Serwis. The name probably derives from the Slavic Cierv (German: scarlet worm). Red dye was obtained form these worms at that time.
At the beginning of the last century, a well-to-do Berlin banker fell in love with this idyllic, terminal moraine landscape with its beautiful lakes and rolling hills. He began to dream of a country estate in Serwest. Here he would find the perfect counter balance to his business life in the capital in the tranquility and beauty of nature. Construction plans were drawn up, the first ground-breaking ceremony followed and finally, at the beginning of the 1920s, the dream came true: the beautiful villa with its green roof and courtyard was completed. At the same time and as a result of the villa’s construction, Serwest was connected to the power grid and so the village of Serwest and its residents benefitted from the arrival of these wealthy strangers from the distant city. The banker was now able to pursue his passion for hunting and agriculture and also provided a lot of gossip in the village with his elaborate and decadent lifestyle.
In 1929, the Stock Market crash led to the banker losing his estate in Serwest. Now this charming villa was looking for new owners.
A farmer from Gdansk bought Villa Serwest and its farm in the early 1930s.
Greenhouses were erected in the park for intensive horticulture, livestock husbandry was increased and thus the villa with its courtyard was given a new lease of life and a new purpose.
After the Second World War, however, the farm was seized and the villa became the state property of the GDR.
The Serwest-Brodowin People’s Cooperative now moved into the Villa Serwest with all their workers and administration and the farm became a popular meeting place for villagers.
After the Reunification of east and west Germany the Cooperative was dissolved, the eco-village was built in Brodowin and the Villa Serwest was given back to the heirs of the ex-propriated farmer.

The Villa and its outbuildings sadly became more and more dilapiadted as a result of the lack of care and maintenence and its remaining uninhabited for long periods. At that time the Villa’s beauty was a distant memory.

But…on a gray and rainy Sunday in January 2009, the Reichenbach family travelled to Serwest to view the property. It was love at first sight. The Villa’s fortunes had changed again and it would be restored to its former beauty and cherished as a family home.
After extensive renovation work, the family of seven moved in on the 15th August 2010. The family was soon joined by three horses, two dogs, two cats and five chickens!

  • On the 7th August, 2012 the Yoga school was opened
  • In 2014 renovations began on the former worker’s cottages
  • And 2018 sees the Grand Opening of the guest seminar house VILLA SERWEST!

The VILLA SERWEST business is managed by Silke Reichenbach. She is supported by her partner Duncan Keil and her five children.
The VILLA SERWEST is now a place for meaningful connections. Joy and harmony have found a home here.