Set firmly in the heart of Europe between five countries, Switzerland has an astonishing cultural mixity. Every canton has developed its traditions, inspired by its neighbours and the Swiss character imbued in calm and serenity. Cosmopolitan? Yes, but also fundamentally independent! Backed by a tradition of neutrality and pacifism, this magnificent country where the Jura and Alps meet seems almost immovable, as if suspended in time.
Bringing a new harmony to the medieval ramparts, baroque palaces and wooden bridges of the surrounding towns, the landscape of Lake Lucerne now includes an ultramodern glass and steel music box by the French architect Jean Nouvel. It reflects all the facets of central Switzerland, its crown of Alpine peaks, its shimmering palette of blues, its patchworks of greens. A spectacular theater and the showcase of the Lucerne Festival Orchestra. In the summer, the faces of music lovers light up with the first sounds of the tuning violins. A Wagner opera is just the thing to exalt the iridescent highlights of the lake, its romantic fugues caressing the voluptuous curves of the nearby mountains, massive outcroppings of limestone and vertiginous ridges with evocative names…
“The sun strikes your head from above, but then there’s another one, striking your back from below. That makes two: the one in the sky, emanating from a single, unified point, and the one below, which is broken into scattered pieces, because there is water bouncing back the light and hurling it towards the shore. That makes two suns shining together — which is why they have such good wine.” Charles-Ferdinand Ramuz immortalized the Suisse Romande in prose with the same power as Paul Cézanne’s palette in his depictions of Provence. Each sentence seems to retrace roots that grow from deep within this land. Its people, its vineyards, lakes and mountains are omnipresent. Like the high limestone hills caressed by the wavelets of Lake Biel. Along its western shore, at the foot of the Jura Mountains, dozens of different grape varieties thrive on the steep terraced slopes.
Hotel and restaurant in the mountains. A first spa hotel, called Bad Lenk, had been built at the end of the 17th century, downstream of the richest Alpine sulphurous source, Balmen. Today, this spring is an integral part of the architecture of Lenkerhof gourmet spa resort which is a magnificent hotel, with an extensive range of well-being treatments. The “7 sources beauty & spa” is named after the spot where the river Simme rises and draws its inspiration from its flowing water. It offers true rejuvenation in natural timber and stone surroundings. This hotel provides, amidst fabulous landscapes, the perfect opportunity to enjoy all that the mountains have to offer whatever the season. ... Learn moreless
Restaurant and hotel in a vineyard. From the age of seven, Philippe Chevrier knew that he would be a cook. His childhood dream was nourished by the dishes created by his mother, who gave him a passion for good food. Philippe’s dream has become a reality. This is an excellent reason to stop off in the heart of Satigny, Switzerland’s largest wine-producing municipality. In this immaculately renovated former vine grower’s farm, Philippe Chevrier and Damien Coche serve, amongst other treats, whole oven-baked John Dory, sauteed scallops in sepia ink, and Limousin rack of lamb baked in hay and aromatic herbs in a sealed casserole. ... Learn moreless
Hotel and restaurant in the mountains. In a postcard setting with unbelievable views of snowy peaks, Le Chalet d’Adrien seems to cling to the mountain. It overlooks Verbier, one of the most charming Swiss mountain resorts. An unrivalled ski paradise in winter, and mountain pastures for magnificent hikes in summer. Matching wood panelling and fabrics, antique furniture, books and objets d’art scattered around in a homey way combine to create a charming, cosy atmosphere from which the pristine beauty of the landscape can be enjoyed. The pool looking onto the mountains, and the Spa by Sisley are an invitation to well-being. The restaurants feature the culinary flavours of nearby Italy and Valais products and wines. ... Learn moreless
Hotel and restaurant in a village. For Toni and Barbara Mittermair, “guests don’t come to the hotel, they come to our home”. This home is beautifully located on the banks of Lake Geneva, with snowy mountain peaks behind. It is a pleasure to sip aperitifs on the terrace, whilst watching the beautiful sunset. The inspired owners have succeeded in preserving the intimate and welcoming atmosphere of a family hotel at the Victoria. In the hotel’s restaurant, the chef and his team create simple cuisine inspired by the south of France, such as the rack of Sisteron lamb with herbs accompanied by straw potatoes and ratatouille nicoise. ... Learn moreless
Hotel and restaurant on a lake. Castello del Sole, on the shores of Lake Maggiore, is one of the largest hotel estates in Ticino. It is an oasis of tranquillity in the heart of an expansive park and a bird reserve. The authentic architecture of a southern manor house, refined details like the seating in the park, the private beach on Lake Maggiore and the delightful inner courtyards all contribute to a sense of well-being. The two suite pavilions with the luxurious junior suites and suites are the stuff of which dreams are made. In the restaurant Locanda Barbarossa, the chef delights guests with his Italian-Mediterranean cuisine. Total relaxation is guaranteed in the exclusive spa of 2 500 m². ... Learn moreless
Restaurant and hotel in the mountains. A wonderful mountain landscape provides the backdrop to this beautiful inn, which has retained the typical style of the Engadine over its 450 years. The new buildings blend in harmoniously, with their modern lines clad in natural wood inspired by the surrounding pine and larch forests. The spring-water organic pool is located on a small plateau directly in front of the hotel. This peaceful, silent and hospitable spot is the work of a family, the Cadonau, whose members have, for several generations, coupled their complementary talents perfectly to each other. Whether hotelier, cook, or carpenter, what is most important to them is to focus all their efforts on the guests to offer elegant comfort, a warm welcome and fine cuisine based on fresh seasonal ingredients. The result constitutes a graceful, well balanced framework and thus creates a wonderful harmony. Chef Dario Cadonau learnt his craft in some of the most prestigious restaurants in Switzerland and Germany. He is able to propose 3 culinary moods, from hearty mountain specialties to gourmet restaurant classics with a different surprise menu every night . ... Learn moreless
Hotel and restaurant on a lake. This hundred-year-old mansion proudly overlooking Lake Constance has rediscovered its former glories through meticulous renovation and some modern features. August Minikus and his wife combine their talents of chef and sommelier to offer a unique experience in a welcoming setting. The dishes are composed as works of art and wines are expertly paired with the menu. The guest rooms can be accessed by a glazed lift. In the Esprit Lounge lovers of smoke and spirits can savour a cigar. ... Learn moreless
Restaurant and hotel in a village. Bernard, Ruth, Nathalie, Guy, as soon as guests put their bags down in this family home, surrounded by vineyards, they are already on first-name terms with the entire Ravet family, and feel right at home. The Ravets are exceptionally welcoming and have a knack for getting things just right. In the kitchen, Chefs Bernard and Guy Ravet, father and son, conjure up masterpieces. L'Ermitage, a 16th century winery in a green setting, is classified as a historic monument and, in the boutique, Ruth and Nathalie, renowned sommelières, select the finest local specialities. ... Learn moreless
Hotel and restaurant in the mountains. The Paradies is located in an idyllic landscape with an exceptional panorama of the blooming meadows and snow-covered peaks of the Dolomites. The interior has been furnished with precious works of art and antiques of reputed Engadine Valley artists. The restaurant “Charn Alpina” serves fine meat specialties, whilst the “Cucagna” focuses on local produce. The hotel’s spa offers magnificent views of the Silvretta summit.The hotel is the ideal starting point for extensive walks and bicycle tours. One of the most beautiful golf courses in Switzerland is nearby and in winter, the 80 km tracks and pistes are a delight for alpine and cross-country skiers. ... Learn moreless
Restaurant in a village. On the heights of Montreux, between the lake and the mountains, Le Pont de Brent has delighted gourmets for several decades. Inspired by the seasons, two-star Chef Stéphane Décotterd continues the tradition of excellence in this inviting village residence, with a sense of happiness. Witness the art of carving poultry tableside with masterful dexterity and sample inventive cuisine that features the very best of local produce. Dishes such as crayfish vinaigrette from Lake Geneva and the composition of Boltus mushrooms with fresh almonds are accompanied by smooth Swiss wines, including great white wines from the neighbouring Lavaux vineyard. ... Learn moreless