Visit Graubunden: Swiss Destination Announces New Hotel Openings and Major Renovations
The Noteworthy Newcomer
Graubunden’s latest showplace, the Hotel Krone, opened its doors on December 8, 2022, inviting guests to ‘Explore More.’ The ideal basecamp for those looking to experience this part of the Alps, the Hotel Krone is perfectly situated in the heart of the scenic Churwalden Municipality, just a 5-minute walk from the ski lifts and a 2-minute walk from the Pradaschier Ski Area (one of the best adventure mountains for families). The ski lifts allow access to two sports areas, the Arosa Lenzerheide with roughly 130 miles of pistes for all skill levels, and the Arosa Lenzerheide Snowpark for the braver skiers out there. For those not-so-daring mountain enthusiasts seeking a more relaxing, but still sporty, day out, there is a natural ice rink in the middle of Churwalden. The district is known for its lakes and rivers as well as its mountains, making it a prime spot for exploring all year round.
Visitors can also enjoy the stunning natural environment straight from the hotel’s 86 charming double rooms; each one boasts its own balcony with majestic Alpine views. Or, take in the sights from the bar terrace, sunset drink in hand; it’s open daily after 4pm. Then, proceed to the on-site restaurant, Crùna. Helmed by chef Frank Widmer, it’s a warm, truly hospitable place with a diverse menu tempting all palates with authentic Alpine cuisine alongside plenty of tried-and-true classics including pasta and pizza. For those who seek to unwind, the spa area includes a jacuzzi (Whirlpool), a steam bath, a Finnish sauna, a bio sauna and an infrared cabin. The hotel also features a spacious fitness room where guests can round off their day with a sports massage. Go ahead and invite the friends you made on the slopes; wellness and fitness facilities are open to external guests.
Restored and Refurbished Relais & Chateaux
Currently the only 5-star hotel in the municipality of Samnaun—which is famed for its Alpine village and the valley below—Relais & Châteaux Chasa Montana has reopened its doors following an extensive renovation that upgraded it from a 4-star property. The luxurious hideaways is family owned by the Zeggs, who collaborated with the architectural firm Fanzun, the interior architect Cathrin Hoch, and interior designer Buckhart Röck on the renovation, which took eight months and an investment of 20-million Swiss francs (roughly $21 million USD).
Today, Chasa Montana is home to 20 suites and 25 double rooms, all designed in an effortlessly elegant style featuring locally sourced materials such as pine, larch wood and granite. The property also hosts La Miranda Gourmet Stübli, a Michelin star and 16 Gault & Millau restaurant where head chef, Bernd Fabian, curates French-Mediterranean cuisine prepared from the best local ingredients; guests can enjoy a surprise menu of three, four, or five courses.
Another standout feature is the 1,500sqm Montana SPA, which is setting new standards in the region with it four pools (including a heated outdoor option), seven saunas, and separate relaxation and silent rooms. Treatments rely on the German-made Medical Beauty Research beauty line, which features an exhaustive list of product options to meet each unique skin’s requirements.
An Eco-Friendly Wonderland
Since 1974, the Valbella Inn has been a leading 4-star winter hideaway in Lenzerheide, one of the Alps’ most beloved ski areas. But the summer of 2022 saw it expand and transform into Valbella Resort, a year-round resort with 121 rooms. After a complete makeover, the property is ready to accommodate guests in the warmer months with new lounge areas, and a new outdoor pool in enchanting grounds ideal for outdoor seminars and garden games. With this renovation, the resort also made great strides in sustainability, launching a series of green initiatives including installing photovoltaic systems, an air heat pump, geothermal probes, and energy-optimized facades.
Valbella is also home to a wellness center with a comprehensive range of spa, relaxation, and treatment options including a swimming pool and sports facilities; two KidsInn nurseries; a fireplace bar; and two restaurants (one of which has been expanded to include a child-free Premula Area). There’s also a large seminar and banquet space for corporate events and conferences which can now also be held in the refreshed outdoor areas, weather permitting. A new, underground car park and tunnel connects the main building, the spa, and the ski room (which includes skis and bikes for guest use).
The Spa of the Future
A brand-new spa in the beloved Schweizerhof Lenzerheide hotel brings a new approach to pampering and relaxation to the Alps. BergSpa invites guests to immerse themselves in the so-called TimeSpaces where they will discover the symbiosis of art and beauty, fragrance and design, relaxation and revitalization for mind and body. Built and curated as an oasis where guests can explore and experience the benefits of filling one’s time with art and leisure, the TimeSpaces are designed to be so much more than a typical spa room or treatment. Instead, they’re sanctuaries for indulging all the senses. A guest chooses an amount of time they want to devote to relaxation (the minimum is 70 minutes), as well as a means to relax: maybe it’s a personal consultation to sample cosmetics (including brands Dermalogica, Pretty & Pure organics and Green + the Gent), time in the hammam, or a Lomi Lomi Nui massage. Then, they enhance their experience with time spent in the light-filled relaxation rooms, enjoying teas and snacks as they retreat and recharge, achieving the ultimate spa experience.
Art Nouveau in the Alps
The Cresta Palace Celerina has been the Art Nouveau jewel of the Engadine valley since it opened in 1906. Now, following a large investment in the millions, 40 rooms and suites have been completely renovated and redesigned with the help of the award-winning architectural office Fanzun AG, who paid close attention to the history of the hotel. The renovation reflects a new interior and color concept and features the work of Engadin craftsmen, highlighting both the management’s and architect’s commitment to cultural sustainability. Local techniques, materials, and style are evident throughout the premises, carefully balancing modernity with the traditional artistry that made the property famous.