Old Abbey and grounds

Witnesses to a rich family history

With the acquisition of the former Benedictine abbey in 1809, Jean-François Boch laid the foundations for progressive ceramic production in the region. The Old Abbey has been home to the Villeroy & Boch headquarters since 1842, and what began as a ceramics factory now hosts this international company’s main offices. The surrounding grounds host the oldest sacred building in the Saarland region, the Old Tower. Built in the year 989 and thus now over one thousand years old, the edifice was originally constructed as a chapel for the mortal remains of Saint Luitwinus, bishop of Trier and founder of the Benedictine monastery.
A few metres to the left of the Old Tower stands the historic Schinkel Fountain, which has now been returned to its original location in front of the entrance to the Old Abbey after extensive restoration in 2003. The fountain was designed by renowned architect Karl Friedrich Schinkel, and was a gift from the Crown Prince of Prussia, Friedrich Wilhelm and later King Friedrich Wilhelm IV, to Jean-François Boch on the occasion of his visit in 1833.
Through the preservation of this historic building, Villeroy & Boch makes a significant contribution to maintaining cultural heritage.
Next to the Old Tower, the abbey grounds host another highlight: an ensemble created by two great artists of our time; this is made up of Erdgeist by André Heller and the largest ceramic puzzle in the world, World Map of Life by Stefan Szczesny. Together, they form Living Planet Square, which was one of the main features at Expo 2000 in Hanover.