Kehidakustány lies in the northern part of Zala county, in the valley of the Zala river, running from north to south, between Kehida to the west and Kustány to the east.
The popular family destination: Kehida Thermal bath and Water Park is in Kehidakustány. Kehida is a tourist attraction also due to its proximity to Keszthely (also called the capital of Balaton) and Lake Balaton (distance: 18 km).
The Deák Mansion was built around year 1770 by the Hertelendy family, on the spot where the Castle of Kehida used to stand. For 47 years Ferenc Deák considered the mansion his home. Csány László, resident of the neighbouring village of Zalacsány, as well as Mihály Vörösmarty, Miklós Wesselényi, István Széchenyi, Lajos Batthyány were frequent visitors of the mansion. The one storey building has conserved its original ‘L’ shape; the remodelling performed in the 19th century in Art Nouveau style has left the outlines intact. The statue depicting Ferenc Deák, which stands in the garden, is the work of György Zala.
The spring called Deák well is only 3 kms away from the village. It is the origin of the Deák stream. As the myth goes, Ferenc Deák only liked to drink the water of this spring during his stays in Kehida. The area around the well is a beloved attraction for hikers, the hiking trail to Almásháza starts here. There is a fireplace next to the well.
A collection of 250 small porcelain coffee cups of different ages, some are only a few years old, some date back several hundred years. Some of them even have their own history. The one cup with small golden feet has been rescued from a hidden corner of a dusty attic. There is one which was travelling across the country on board of an oxcart hidden in the hay, when it was found and preserved by a little girl, who is now a grandmother. They come from all over the world: Germany, England, Japan, China. Some travelled great distances to arrive here. You will also find here cups from the famous porcelain manufactures of Hungary: Zsolnay, Herend and Hollóháza.
Porcelain is a beautiful invention originating from China. It is made from quartz, kaolin and feldspar. The first porcelain was made in China during the rule of the Tang dynasty sometime between 618 and 907. It arrived in Europe around 1100 and it was immediately acclaimed based on its merits. The recipe of porcelain making remained a secret until 1575, the first successful attempt to make soft porcelain paste in Florence. The first hard porcelain was produced in Germany in the beginning of 1700s and soon after the famous porcelain factory of Meissen was established. Porcelain is sometimes called “white gold”. The nobility, the elegance and the perfect glamour entitles this precious material to carry such name.
The burial chapel was built in the cemetery of Kehida in the 13th century. It was on the basis of the preferences of the Deák family in the 18th century, but Ferenc Deák does not rest here. He was buried in Budapest in the Fiume street Cemetery.
The construction begun in 1747 by Gábor Hertelendy, and the church was consecrated on 5th April in 1755. It was originally dedicated to Our Lady of Annunciation and the title remains even today. The tower was completed in 1807. The interior carries Baroque features. The main altar, abundantly decorated with sculpted figures, depicts the annunciation of Mary. Three bells reside in the tower, the largest weighs nearly 400 kg. You can learn more on the history of the church on the slab placed right next to the church entrance.
The agricultural secondary school and the state owned farm, which used to employ many people, closed down at the end of the 1970-ies. Many moved to the city or choose to commute to make ends meet. The other large, state owned farmer’s cooperative was closed at the end of the 1990-ies which brought another wave of unemployment to the village. The thermal bath— which was constructed in several phases starting in the 1980-ies, and gradually developed further in the 1990-ies- brought back the hope and resulted in job opportunities for the villagers. The bath keeps on growing but its current form was reached in the beginning of year 2000 with the involvement of private capital. The bath has a great influence on the whole municipality. New streets have been created, new houses have been built, and old houses remodelled. The number of permanent and temporary residents is slowly but continuously increasing. Employment opportunities are no longer created only by the institutions of the local government, local schools, kindergartens, cultural centres or offices of the county administration, but also by entrepreneurs offering various services related to tourism.
The name Kehidakustány was formed by combining the name of two previously independent settlements: Kehida and Kustány. According to one explanation Kehida refers to the name of two local bridges over the Zala river. Based on the second explanation the root of the name is the world “ketőd” (meaning second born son). The third claims that the word is a remnant of a language change (monophtongization) which happened during the period of the Tartar invasion. The prefix being “kewe or “kewi” and the suffix “hida” (meaning: stone bridge), where the second part of the prefix has disappeared. Kustány comes from an ancient Hungarian name. The word itself is of Turkish origin.
Kehidakustány in its present form was established in 1977 by uniting Kehida, on the western bank of the Zala river, and Kustány, situated on the eastern bank. The history of Kehida goes back to the distant past, but we only know little about Kustány. The first mentioning of Kehida dates back to the year of 1232 when the name first appeared in a charter. According to the document the village was an important settlement where the nobility of Zala county gathered and wrote a letter to the king from the settlement: “in ponte Ketud” that is the bridge of Kethud”. Kehida was an important meeting place of the county and the site where palatines lord lieutenants summoned until the 14th century. Its surroundings belonged to the Koppány family up to the 13th century, when it became the estate of Miklós Kőszegi, palatine. Later it was confiscated by Charles I (Charles Robert) together with other estates of Zala, and was gifted to Lorenzo Master of the Osl family. The most prominent property of Lorenzo was the castle of Kanizsa and the adjoining manors. That is why the history knows the family as the “Kanizsai”. Kehida was one of the wing estates of the Kanizsai family up to 1523 when it was gifted to Dénes Harsányi as a sign of their gratitude for unforgettable services to the family. The village survived a lot of hardships and was rebuilt in the 18th century. It came to the Hertelendy-s as a heritage from the maternal side of the family. Ferenc Deák came to the village through his maternal grandmother, Hertelendy Anna. Starting from 1824 the history of Kehida is linked to the figure of Ferenc Deák (1803-1876).