Braunfels castle — built in the 13th century — perches above Solms and the current manufacturing headquarters of Leica Camera. Good restaurant in Braunfels: Geranio, on the town square below the castle. Try the veal with fresh mushrooms accompanied by a Barbera d’Asti.
Next morning, Alfred Schopf, Managing Director of Leica Camera, shows an O-series Leica (one of the first 25 produced in 1923-24) and still working. It is about the same size as the current Leica X2 camera.
Leica is approaching its 100th anniversary. Currently bursting at the seams in the Solms factory, construction is underway for a new headquarters at a new location called Leitz Park in Wetzlar. It is supposed to be ready by end of 2013.
A giant globe with a red dot locating Wetzlar sits in the roundabout next to the construction site. Turn right, and you’ll be at the new headquarters. Summilux-C cine lens manufacturing is already in a completed building to the right, across the street.