A small castle with a chapel stood on Purberg, which, for those days, lay far beyond the walled city of Graz. Franz Caspar Conduzzi von Heldenfeld purchased this property and decided to build a chapel dedicated to the mother of God here. On some Sundays and public holidays, the number of persons making a pilgrimage to this new place of grace reached 2000 pilgrims from Styria, Hungary and Croatia.
Franz Caspar Conduzzi decided to construct an inn to cater for the steadily growing number of visitors which was later leased out. Not every tenant was able to live up to what was expected of him - in 1698, Lorenz Pizenhofer was, for example, found guilty of selling watered down wine at an inflated price.
On the 8th August, the Pauline Order receives Purberg as a present and applied for permission to build a cloister and a church there.
The foundation stone for the construction of the magnificent Baroque church "Maria Trost" is laid under Emperor Karl VI. According to contemporary sources, more than 100000 pilgrims were already coming each year at this time.
After changing hands many times, the guesthouse was purchased by the Pauline Cloister for 13018 Gulden, which ran it until 1750. Guests could be accommodated at his time, even if there weren't enough beds for them all because "sleep chairs" were also provided.
Under the terms of the leasing agreement, the tenant, Georg Rosswald was "at all times forbidden to play music or, under whatever pretext, to provide accommodation for bad or suspicious persons of both genders".
On the 29th July the property, which at this time was known as "Joselwirt" is destroyed by a devastating fire. It was immediately rebuilt. The pilgrimage church remained unscathed by this unfortunate accident.
Josef and Margarethe Pfeifer purchase the guesthouse and rename it "Kirchenwirt".
Remodelling and extension work lasting four years commences.
Josef Pfeifer II takes over the business on "Kirchenwirt's" 50th anniversary. Continual modernization is continued, as is work to upgrade the standard of the restaurant and hotel.
Josef Pfeifer III continues the tradition and to endeavour to achieve the satisfaction of the guests.