What’s new? It’s the ultimate love story, Daniel and Davia Koetser, the new owners of La Grand Bellevue, met and spent their first married night at the hotel. Now, 100 years after it originally opened, the couple have bought and refurbished it ready for an opening in December.
Eschewing old-school grandeur in place of fresh and forward-thinking designs, the property brings a new style of hotel to the famously traditional Swiss resort. On paper, its eye-catching prints, bold colour palette and mix of modern textures shouldn’t work. But they do, and the result is very trendy.
But despite its cool exterior, deep down the hotel is really just a warm and friendly family-orientated place and, with a baby themselves, the Koetser’s know how to please its younger guests. There are interconnecting bedrooms, a children’s play area (conveniently next to the spa), an 18-seat cinema and children’s menus, as well as babysitting.
Keeping up appearances, there’s also an art deco bar with dramatic domed ceilings, a stylish lounge with soft velvet armchairs and roaring fire, as well as the super-sized spa, which uses Bamford (of the very en-vogue Daylesford empire in Gloucestershire) and Cellcosmet products, has a Turkish hammam and a swimming pool.
Michelin-starred chef Urs Gschwend is the driving force behind the restaurant Leonard’s, which serves more than just the ubiquitous fondue. Expect the likes of braised knuckle of veal and saffron risotto, warming bouillabaisse and molten chocolate cake – which you’ve obviously earned after a gruelling day on the slopes.
The wine cellar is not to be missed, it houses 10,000 bottles and hosts tastings or dinners, then round off the meal in the Cigar Lounge. For special occasions, or if you’re travelling with a group, there’s Le Petit Chalet, an 18-person private dining room in the hotel’s grounds, serving hearty Swiss food to suit its surroundings.
Getting there: Zurich is 2 hours and 50 minutes from Gstaad, while Geneva is 2 hours away. British Airways flies to both destinations from £77 to Geneva and £133 to Zurich.
Price: Rooms in the winter cost from £423 a night on half board.
To book: Visit bellevue-gstaad.com or call +41 33 748 00 00