The German Spa Night Called ‘Kristallnacht’



History is a tricky thing. We try to treat past horrors with pathos and sensitivity, but we don’t want to suffocate under history’s yoke and have our growth impeded. We want to learn, but we want to move on. With that said, if there’s a line, we’re pretty sure an incident in November 2013 demolished it:

If you don’t recall, that’s when Kristall Sauna Wellnesspark, a spa in eastern Germany, advertised a “long, romantic Kristallnacht,” an event scheduled for the actual 75th anniversary of the “Night of Broken Glass.” Kristallnacht, you might recall, was the November 9, 1938 wave of anti-Jewish pogroms that took place throughout Germany, and marked a sharp turn for the worse for European Jewry.

The spa owners bowed to pressure and apologized for the “insensitive naming of this event,” which, they conceded, was “extremely inappropriate.” But we can’t really blame them: they’re always throwing “Kristall” onto the names of their programs in homage to their name, they said. It’s, like, their thing.

Ultimately the name was changed to “the long romantic night,” a gesture that surely disappointed those who were planning on bringing a pitchfork and torch along with flip-flops and towels.

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