Gstaad Palace Names New Director

Palace_Romuald_Bour_und_Andrea_Scherz

Photo: Gstaad Palace 

Text: GSTAADLIFE

 

Romuald Bour has been named director of the Gstaad Palace. Andrea Scherz, the third generation to run the family hotel, will remain general manager. 

“Romuald is my right hand man,” beams Scherz, whose grandfather acquired the hotel after WWII. “He understands the Scherz Family philosophy and demonstates it every day with his engagement in the business.”

The 37-year old Bour, who is Alsatian by birth, graduated from the Ecole Hotelière Strasbourg in 1992. He gained experience at luxury establishments in England and Austria before relocating to Switzerland. 

His is a classic tale of working one’s way to the top; Bour began at the Palace as a cashier in 1999, then moved on to positions as food & beverage manager and eventually assistant director. He continued his studies in Bern, obtaining a diploma in Hotel Management in Bern in 2011.

“Even after 15 years, I'm still proud to come to work every day,” says Bour, when asked what he enjoys most about the Palace. “Our co-workers and regular guests are like family, which gives the Palace its incredible, and very unique, atmosphere.”

www.palace.ch

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100 Winters in Gstaad

Rosey

Samuel and Unni Turrettini, Le Rosey alumni, in Avrone commemorative sunglasses.

Photos:  Raphael Faux

Text: Januaria Piromallo

 

Standing ovation–1000 clapping hands for the farewell speech of Philippe Gudin. He was only 26 years old when he started as director of Le Rosey, one of the world’s foremost academic institutions. Thirty-five years later, he passes the crown and sceptre to his son Christophe, 28 years old. 

"Swiss values, internationalism, family ownership and a holistic education,” said Mr Gudin, during his speech, “this has been the legacy of Le Rosey since it was born in 1880.” 

Despite its current fame, the school had a quite humble beginning–which began with just three students: an Italian, a German and a Swiss. The instruction was primarily focused on teaching French and business.

In 1915, to escape the damp and dull winters by the lake, Henri Carnal, the son of the founder, decided to move the school to Gstaad for the season. The Palace Hotel had just opened its doors and the ski lifts did not even exist yet. The first problems they encountered were too much snow and not enough fresh vegetables. They installed the school in Chalet Rex (which today is the main office). 

One of their first activities was starting a hockey team together with Gstaad, which later won the Swiss championship. Step by step, the “ésprit roséen” or Roséen spirit, was built. This philosophy insists that education must include sports, arts and concern for the others, all wrapped in good manners. Now, Philippe and his wife Anne Gudin, have just retired, having achieved so much more. 

"The bond of lasting friendship and shared experiences across a multitude of nationalities and cultures is the essence of the AIAR (Association Internationale des Anciens Roséens)," said Monica Coppola in her speech following Mr Gudin. Ms Coppola speaks from first hand knowledge–three generations of brothers, sisters and cousins in her family have studied at Le Rosey. 

At this, their annual alumni weekend, the Rosey full programme started on Thursday, February 12 with a meeting with heads of admissions of American and English Universities including Dartmouth and Cambridge, at Alpin Nova. On Friday at the Wasserngrat, the famous ski race took place among students, alumni, and parents. Prize giving with beautiful crystal trophies and a variety of food including raclette and sugared crepes was served under a tent. In the afternoon, a hockey match was held on Gstaad's rink. 

For the biggest event of the school’s “100 Winters in Gstaad” celebration, the Alpengala tent was transformed into an enchanted forest. Approximately 1000 guests were present for a dinner planned by Marie Noëlle Gudin, Rosey Foundation Manager and daughter of the outgoing Philippe Gudin. Students and alumni were seated next to local entrepreneurs like Lorenz Bach and national deputy Erich von Siebenthal. Completing the evening, a young student played rock quitar while the "Golden Singers" performed onstage. As the perfect souvenir of the evening, Edoardo Francia, head of trendy Italian sunglass company Avrone, made a special edition for the school. The proceeds from the sales all went to a good cause–to help fund the building a new school in Mali that will serve children in need.

Bravo Le Rosey–here’s to another 100 years in Gstaad!

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Good News at Annual Assembly of Gstaad Saanenland Tourism

There was reason to celebrate at the 22nd General Assembly of Gstaad Saanenland Tourism held earlier this month.  Figures showed the touristic year 2013-2014 was the strongest in the past six years, with an 8.8% increase in hotel nights. 

In addition to presenting annual accomplishments, the conference hosted a talk by Josef Margreiter, director of Tirol Werbung GmbH.  He presented an overview of the successful tourism model of Austria’s Tyrol region.  The model features individual and bespoke proposals, and is the result of a clear, concise strategic plan, according to Margreiter, an expert in the tourism industry. 

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Sarah, Duchess of York Graces Gstaad Gala

IID gala

Left to right: Sarah, Duchess of York, IID President Homayra Sellier, and Libby Ferguson.

Photo: Raphael Faux

Text: Alexis Munier

 

Event Raises Funds to End Human Trafficking and Sexual Exploitation

Innocence in Danger, the international organisation that fights child sexual exploitation and human trafficking from 11 offices across the world, held its annual charity gala February 12 in Gstaad.

The evening began with cocktails at the Gstaad Yacht Club, where Founder and President Homayra Sellier gave an introductory speech. 

“It has been a very productive year in so many ways,” said Sellier. “We have opened two new offices in Austria and the UK, which extends our reach to help even more children in need.” 

 

Advocacy Activities in Europe and Beyond

It has been a successful year for IID indeed. The following are several highlights of the organisation’s recent campaigns for justice:

1. France: Participation in the "Affaire Cottrez," the biggest case of infanticide worldwide, with eight murdered babies. Their legal action created a jurisprudence that acts as a change in the law, and as a result the perpetrator will face charges in criminal court. Sellier is also assisting victims with preparation for what will be another very large criminal case, which will appear in French court in May 2015.

2. Colombia: IID’s Regional Director Mrs Susana Roques, expert on cognitive post-trauma therapies, has initiated a new form of therapy which is the most effective known today. A book on the method will be launched at the end of March 2015. 

3. Germany: Smartphone, peer to peer and internet safety programmes developed by IID are being used nationwide. They will next be launched in Austria, with further use in other countries once translations and logistic preparations are completed.

 

Where’s There a Will, There’s a Soirée 

Next during the evening’s lineup was a short film by Raven Kaliana, a survivor of child sexual exploitation. “Hooray for Hollywood” uses handcrafted puppets to illustrate the painful experiences of Kaliana’s youth and is a vital component of her public awareness activities.

The highlight of the evening was guest of honour Sarah, Duchess of York, who gave an inspiring speech to the enthusiastic crowd. The Duchess spoke at length on her charity work and presented a slideshow of children she has helped around the world. One particularly emotional moment was the story of a young boy she had met at an orphanage in Romania. When Sarah, Duchess of York inquired as to why he was lying on the floor on a dirty mattress, he responded that once a day, the sun hit a certain spot on the building and he could feel its warmth.

“Forget about your next party, your next glass of champagne,” quipped Sarah, Duchess of York. “Remember there are people in the world who need your help; children like this boy, who waits all day to feel just a minute of sunlight on his face.” 

The Duchess continued in her trademark no-nonsense style, “I’ve had bad press for decades, and the media have written some terrible things about me. But it doesn’t bother me. I wake up thankful for every day–for the wonderful opportunities I’ve been given–and I know how lucky I am.”

The group then moved on for dinner at Le Grand Bellevue, followed by dancing at the hotel’s Club Room. The event also featured a silent auction and tombola. All proceeds will go toward funding IID’s Swiss activities, namely their summer camps in the Saanenland and aftercare programme. 

IID is active in seven countries – Switzerland, France, Germany, the USA, the UK and Colombia, where they provide legal, medical and social services to victims and their parents. Additionally, IID is equally dedicated to fostering real political change and awareness through high-level advocacy and lobbying.

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John F Kennedy International School Debuts Renovated Schoolhouse

Jfk openhouse

Photo: John F Kennedy International School

Text: GSTAADLIFE

 

On February 20, John F Kennedy International School hosted an annual Open House.

The event was a chance for the school to present its newly renovated schoolhouse to the public.  Built in 1880, the historic building has been a source of pride for locals.  It was donated to the school by the community of Saanen, with the catch that John F Kennedy International School finance a complete renovation. 

Though the project suffered its share of fits and starts, the magnificent property has now been brought back to life.  A professional kitchen and dining room have been installed in the original basement, and two new floors of classrooms feature the latest in technology and comfort. Exterior and structural work was also completed, giving the schoolhouse a facelift that accentuates the beauty of the original woodwork and design.  It’s proof that with the right renovations, the region’s antique structures can and should be preserved, and are capable of serving as truly modern facilities. 

The event began with an apéro and champagne, and featured art installations by both students and well-known local artists Dalia Fayed, Zelda Ziegelbaum, Claire Sevestre, Oliver Preston, Ian Wilson, Vinc, and Andy Matti.   A trio provided the lively music—with Luis Juarez Quixtan and Simon Korsak on guitar and vocals by Luisa Urquizu.  Tours of the schoolhouse were given to the more than 150 students, parents, and locals who attended.

Marking the importance of the John F Kennedy International School in the region, City Council President Aldo Kropf was on hand to make a short speech.  Director Henri Behar made introductory remarks, and said the school was very proud of how far it had come regarding the schoolhouse and recent transition. 

“Education is the most important gift we can give to our children. Here at JFK, we ensure that we combine challenging and enriching experiences with academic rigor and creative opportunities.” said Behar. “All this is facilitated by this new schoolhouse and the exceptional equipment with which we have to teach. We are really happy to welcome our family of students, staff and parents who make our warm, caring and happy school a unique place to study.”

The John F Kennedy International School has made a swift turnaround this year.  While the 2013-2014 term saw the loss of nearly half the student body, numbers are currently on the rise.  Henri Behar, the school’s new director who took over administration less than a year ago, joined forces with Philippe Gudin, well-respected director of famed boarding school Le Rosey, to solve these challenges. Gudin kindly agreed to serve as the John F Kennedy International School’s mentor, Behar and Gudin have worked in tandem to strengthen existing programs and recruit new students, with much success.

When schools such as John F Kennedy International flourish, they have a positive economic impact on the community. The rise in popularity of day-school programs at John F Kennedy International School has prompted many families to settle in the region. Even the school’s boarding students often have a chalet or apartment in the Saanenland, in which family members stay to remain close-by; this also holds true for Le Rosey.

 

 

 

 

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Same Time Next Season

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Ski Instructors Jan Brand & Li Chun Lei

After chocolate, watches, and cheese, when you think of skiing, you think of Switzerland. Since organised skiing was first developed in Glarus in 1892, this winter sport has been a source of great revenue for the Alps. But with shrinking revenues from European guests, new markets are being developed in the Far East. 

The most ambitious of these projects was worthy of a reality show. For the Winter 2013/2014 season, the Swiss Tourism board and Swiss Snowsports held auditions in China to select six Chinese skiers to live and train in Switzerland. Of those lucky six, Li Chun Lei was sent to the Saanenland. Despite limited English (and nonexistent German) skills, the ambitious 42-year old skier took to Gstaad like a fish to water. Hosted by the Brands in Lauenen, Chun Lei was welcomed like family. Jan Brand, director of Gstaad Snowsports and head of the ski school, created a specialised training programme for him, which Chun Lei is currently continuing this year. 

This winter, the saga continues; on behalf of Swiss Tourism and the association Swiss Snowsports, Li Chun Lei was invited to spend another winter in Gstaad. The Chinese ski teacher first attended a week of intensive courses to improve his English, before embarking on ski instructing during the holiday period. 

................ 

GL: Is there a ski culture in China? If so, how is it evolving?

Li Chun Lei: Skiing was first opened to the public in 1996, so the ski culture is very young. We have a few hundred resorts of all sizes, which are spread out mostly in my northeast region of Hailong. Skiing is gaining in popularity but still remains a far-off luxury for most Chinese families. People who live in the ski regions, however, are now starting to take the sport seriously. 

 

GL: How did you become interested in downhill skiing?

LCL: I remember watching the Olympics on television, and thinking, “Wow!” I’d like to do that. It was summer and very hot in China, but I started making my own skis in anticipation of the next winter. I made them completely by hand, chopping wood in the forest and then carving them to the right size and shape. 

 

GL: What do you love most about the sport? 

LCL: In general, cities in China are crowded and noisy… but up on the mountains there is peace and calm. I love standing at the top of a slope and just taking it all in, breathing the fresh air and appreciating the beautiful nature around me.

 

GL: Chun Lei, you live with Jan’s parents Benz and Annelise in Lauenen. How is it to live with a local family?

LCL: I much prefer living with the Brand family than living in a hotel. They’ve taught me so much about Swiss culture. Jan’s father Benz has taught me how to milk cows, and Annelise has even showed me how to make a fondue. 

 

GL: The weather hasn’t exactly been conducive to skiing this winter; how is the ski business? 

Jan Brand: First of all, we were only hurt by the lack of snow before Christmas. The holiday week of New Year’s was one of the busiest of the year. January is often quiet but it’s true that this year, we had the surprise of the franc’s 20 % rise against the euro, which certainly didn’t help matters. But there are yet other reasons why skiing is suffering.

 

GL: You say skiing is declining in popularity. Why?

JB: Let’s face it, skiing is an expensive sport–the slopes have to be maintained and so does the lift equipment. That said, many people continue to choose beautiful Alpine nature, and beautiful things will always have their price. 

 

GL: Seeking out foreign guests from outside Europe must be an even greater priority now. How important is reaching the Asian market? 

JB: Very important! China especially is a huge country with a growing upper and middle class, whose appetite for travel is growing. As Chun Lei mentioned, skiing is new to the Chinese, and I think it will continue to evolve in popularity. Despite the new opportunities for skiing in China, a real love for skiing will bring them to the Alps one day, where we have some of the world’s best ski resorts.

 

GL: You have been called the ‘Perfect Ambassador for Gstaad’ by Gstaad-Saanenland Tourism, Chun Lei. How do you feel about this title?

LCL: It’s true I have been very active on the social networks in China, especially Weibo, which is our equivalent to Facebook. I like posting photos and comments about my life here in Switzerland, to show the Chinese people just how fantastic the skiing is, and how beautiful the scenery. 

 

GL: Chun Lei, do you spend the whole day teaching on the slopes? 

LCL: This year, in addition to teaching skiing, I’m acting as a full guide for Chinese guests. Because of the language issue, they have a problem from the first moment they arrive at the airport. I come to pick them up and help them get to Gstaad, and arrive at their hotel. This quiet time with guests gives me the opportunity to talk about the Saanenland, and explain what I know about Swiss culture, history, and sports.

 

GL: Jan, what sort of specialized training is Chun Lei receiving?

JB: As of yet, there is no official recognition for ski instructors in China. That’s a big part of why Chun Lei is here, to learn not only more about skiing technique, but safety and pedagogy focusing on children’s ski lessons as well. In 2001, Switzerland began requiring that all ski instructors pass a series of exams to obtain a license. Chun Lei is currently completing the first of four levels in the Swiss system.

 

GL: Local knowledge is one of the reasons those raised in the Saanenland represent a majority of the ski instructors. However, wouldn’t more Russian and Chinese workers be a boon to the region?

JB: Some foreign workers do come to work the winter season; however, their numbers remain minimal. As the only Chinese-speaking instructor at Gstaad Snowsports, Li Chun Lei’s role is vital for our Chinese guests who speak no other language but Mandarin or Cantonese. 

 

GL: What are the qualities of a superior ski instructor?

JB: Skills like good knowledge of the weather and snow conditions are necessary, especially for guided trips off-piste, where the risk of avalanche is especially high this season. The instructors must not only be expert skiers, but well-rounded snow sportsmen.

 

GL: Has studying, training, and working in Gstaad helped your career in China? 

LCL: Yes! Thanks to my time in Gstaad and the press I’ve received back home, I was offered a position managing a ski resort last year. That’s why I’m only here in Gstaad twice for several weeks at a time–my employer in China needs me.

 

GL: The winter only lasts so long, and it’s clear that ski instructors must find other work during the rest of the year; how do you spend this time?

JB: As director of the ski school, I have a year-round position. In the off-season there is quite a lot of administration and marketing to take care of, and I do take a whole month off in summer to spend time with my two children.

LCL: My new job as director of a ski resort is year-round. We are talking about ways to expand our summer offerings, perhaps by building a golf course. 

 

GL: What is your opinion on the the financial problems of the mountain railways company, the BDG?
Are you worried that closing certain installations or even bankruptcy will hurt your business? 

JB: I’m on the board of the BDG so I am fully aware that there are some changes that will be made. We are working hard to solve the situation and come up with a solution that fits our needs and creates a solid future for skiing in the region.

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Do You Fondue? Cheese Specialties in the Saanenland

Photocase4cnk7zfn51426692

Photo: Fotolia

 

Switzerland is one of the world’s leading cheese producers, with nearly 500 varieties available. So it comes as no surprise that Swiss national cuisine is based around this delicious dairy product. Two main dishes featuring cheese in melted form top the country’s ‘to eat’ list – fondue and raclette. 

 

By ALEXIS MUNIER

Here in the Saanenland, cows head to the hills, literally, to take advantage of sweet alpine herbs, grasses, and flowers in the summertime. Often produced using ancient methods in a giant copper kettle, Alpkäse is a firm, strong cheese which takes on an intensely earthy flavor. When aged for several years, the cheese is known as Hobelkäse. In the Berner Oberland, Höbelkäse is crumbly and sharp – it’s always served in thinly shaved slices or larger crumbles.

 

Melts in Your Mouth, Not in Your Hands

After a day on the slopes, hungry skiers can be found gathered around a swirling pot of Switzerland’s famous fondue. Whether a mix of Gruyère and Vacherin (known as moitié-moitié) or the less pungent mix of several hard cheeses, fondue is a countrywide staple. 

While locals do tend to eat it only in winter, tourists partake all-year round. But when freezing temperatures set in, this blend of melted cheese, white wine, kirsch, corn starch and garlic is one of the best ways to warm up.

 

Just Scraping By

If you like fondue but it doesn't like you, try a portion of raclette instead. Originally hailing from France’s Haute-Savoie region, the dish consists of a half wheel of cheese heated then scraped piping hot onto boiled potatoes. 

Each region has its preferred accompaniments; here in Gstaad you’ll most likely find it eaten with pickled cucumbers, onions, and a selection of dried meats. Supposedly the vinegar-soaked vegetables cut through the grease, helping you digest this calorie bomb. As opposed to fondue, order raclette and at least you’ll be sure to get your daily vegetable intake.

 

:::::::::::::

Swiss Cheese Awards

Once again, the Gstaad region has been honoured for its wealth of excellent dairy products. 

At the ninth annual Swiss Cheese Awards in Rapperswil, entries were evaluated by a large panel of more than 100 judges from the dairy and catering industries, as well as media representatives and consumers. No fewer than four local offerings from Schonried Molkerei and Gstaad Molkerei were selected for distinction amongst over 800 products in 28 categories. 

Bruno Buchs cleaned up in the soft cheeses, with his “Délice de Schönried” placing second. But Buchs’ luck didn’t end there–his 100% goat cheese took seventh place in the very same category. In the semi-hard category, Erhard Kohli’s herb-encrusted Gstaader Alpkäse garnered a respectable seventh place, with his plain version just making the cut at nineteenth place.

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Private Ski Instructors Association Elects New President

After presiding over the Private Ski Instructors Gstaad-Saanenland association for four years, Nicole Haldi has handed over the reins to Christoph Hauswirth, who was unanimously elected new president. 

BY GSTAADLIFE

During the four years of Nicole Haldi’s term, the Private Ski Instructors Gstaad-Saanenland underwent a series of changes. Founded in 1971, it had to adapt its charter and issued instructions to its members in order to meet guests’ current demands.

While private ski instructors focus on winter sports, they also provide tours and services during summer. Be it a pleasurable hike or a demanding mountain ascent, the Saanenland has an outdoor activity for all levels and desires. In many cases, guests and their instructor are in touch throughout the year and both sides profit from a relationship that grows closer over the years.

With the snow in full swing, the region’s private ski instructors are looking forward to sharing the pleasures of winter sports with their guests.

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New Bridge Breaks Records --- Peak Walk by Tissot

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Photo: Glacier 3000

The world’s only suspension bridge to connect two mountain peaks is now open at Glacier 3000. 

 

BY GSTAADLIFE

The Peak Walk by Tissot joins the station’s View Point peak with Scex Rouge (2971 m). 

Offering extraordinary views on the Alps, the 80 cm-wide bridge spans 107 m and can withstand winds of up to 200km/hr. 

It is the second-highest suspension bridge in the world after Titlis Cliff Walk, which is located in Obwalden. From the View Point all the highest surrounding peaks are visible – the Matterhorn, Eiger, Mönch, Jungfrau, and even Mont Blanc. 

The bridge is expected to double the number of annual visitors to 50,000. While the bridge had a cost of CHF 1.8 m, this increase should mean better viability of the Glacier 3000 area.

Glacier 3000 is owned by Gstaad real estate mogul Marcel Bach and two well-known investors in the Saanenland, Jean-Claude Mimran (co-owner of The Alpina Gstaad) and Bernie Ecclestone (owner of the Hotel Olden). The team took over in 2005 with the aim of investing to improve the value and quality of services of the ski area.

The bridge holds up to 300 visitors, yet crowds will be limited to 150 for comfort purposes. Entrance is free with purchase of a Glacier 3000 day card or lift ticket.

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BDG Faces Uncertain Future

By GSTAADLIFE

 

At a meeting in late autumn 2014, public approval seemed likely as the City Council and Bergbahnen Destination Gstaad (BDG) team presented the latest updates to a crowd of 800 people. City Council President Aldo Kropf and Roland Zegg of the consulting firm Grischconsulta announced good news at the informational session. “Winter 2014/2015 is secured for BDG,” stated Aldo Kropf. 

But after this winter, the attack plan for rendering operations economically viable is still unclear. At the assembly in November, the proposed plan to secure a permanent solution for BDG was not approved and the voters officially sent the measure back to the City Council. Now, the Council will have to create yet another plan for restructuring and rehabilitation.

 

Transitional Plan in Place Now

A transitional plan with loan consideration was accepted, and will remain in place through the Winter 2015/16 season. The public expressed concern over several areas of the transitional plan. Namely, the CHF 12.9 m credit necessary for continued renovation was deemed unusually elevated. The temporary solution also raises taxes from 1.3 to 1.4 points, which is not popular among voters.

Stating the importance of keeping the installations running this winter, Christian Hoefliger, President of the Hotel Association Gstaad-Saanen made clear that the Hotel Association "does not always agree with the work of BDG.” Yet, it didn't stop the association from agreeing with the transitional plan and loan application, to make certain operations continued without suspension of any lifts or cable cars. 

Calming stakeholders and bringing a bit of peace to the inflamed discussions was stressed by Emanuel Raaflaub, Municipal Council and BDG Chairman. He refuted the allegations that funds of uncommon largesse were earmarked for operations rather than investments.

That said, criticism was harsh for Dr Roland Zegg, who remains on the Board of Directors, and whose company, Grischconsulta, remains the primary consultancy for BDG’s rehabilitation project. A citizen had demanded to know how much Grischconsulta was paid for their work, yet after three requests the information still had not been made public.  

Ernst B. Frautschi of the Spitzhorn association criticised BDG in the discussion, claiming that concerns voiced by the project’s former consulting firm, Trimea AG were not being heard. 

“For nine months we have made several attempts to show that without painful, self-supported, internal measures, BDG is in danger of bankruptcy,” Frautschi quoted from Trimea’s resignation letter, dated September 2013. He added, “It is now important to accelerate the rehabilitation process, instead of artificially prolonging it.”

Projects for both sectors of BDG had been discussed for the strategic plan, and although the final decision remains up in the air, here are summaries of some of the most likely renovations to be made.

 

East Sector Projects

Expansion in Zweisimmen is a crucial point, as 36% of all guests were day visitors (the day passes are the most expensive on offer). This could be achieved by expanding parking facilities and tightening management, they believe. Ernst Hodel, City Council President of Zweisimmen was in agreement with the BDG’s strategic proposal in this regard, which does ask the town to make certain concessions.  

An eight-person gondola could replace the Lengebrand shuttle, and the slopes at Chaltebrunnetal-Parwengsattel-Lengebrand and guarantee artificial snow cover.

But at the heart of this plan is the replacement of the Saanerslochgratbahn, including the base terminal and central station. Although the central station is expensive to operate, the BDG says it is imperative to maintain the viability of local ski schools, which could bring possible future guests to the area.  

Replacement of the Berghaus Saanerslochgrat by an authentic mountain restaurant is also on the list of five key projects BDG hoped to develop in the next five years. In total, these projects would amount to a cost of CHF 64 m. Yet one project would bring in a significant operational savings – the closure of the Gstaad-Eggli gondola and the Wispile.

 

West Sector Projects

Investments in the West sector (Gstaad to Rougemont) were organised into four projects. Highlights included guaranteed artificial snow cover on the front slope of Eggli-Chalberhöni. This would ensure that the connection between Eggli and La Videmanette remains attractive. In Saanen (Rübeldorf) a winter sports centre would be built, which means the ski school for nordic and alpine training and racing, events, and night skiing would be concentrated in one location. As such, the ski school would be moved from Wispile to Saanen.

An additional investment of CHF 5 to 7 m would be necessary if a new restaurant were to be built on the future path at the Eggli, and since La Videmanette is not a core area of BDG, any surplus or shortfall would be settled directly with the community of Rougemont.

BDG management had been confident the total financing of CHF 81 m would be reached in the next five years from repositioning capital, donations, help from SECO (State Secretariat for Economic Affairs), banks, and by the cantons of Bern and Vaud. But now, with another rejection by the voters, an alternative plan with a new budget will have to be developed and approved by the City Council, before it goes yet again to the voters.

It looks like this year, snow isn’t the only thing that’s late in coming, as voters will continue to wait patiently for another strategic plan approved by the City Council sometime in 2015.

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GstaadLife Print Edition

GstaadLife is Gstaad’s first and only weekly magazine in English. Appears once a week in the winter and summer high seasons.

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History of GstaadLife

GstaadLife.com and the GstaadLife print edition are the English-language sister publications to the German-language Anzeiger von Saanen. The print edition was launched on February 3 2004, with the website first appearing in August 2006. GstaadLife.com and the GstaadLife print edition have a separate editorial team from the Anzeiger von Saanen, with some articles in GstaadLife publications being translations of items that appeared in the Anzeiger von Saanen. The Anzeiger von Saanen has been printed in Saanen and Gstaad since 1880, and is the leading source of local news coverage for the area known as Saanenland, which includes Gstaad and surrounding areas of the western Bernese Oberland in the Swiss Alps. GstaadLife.com, GstaadLife, and the Anzeiger von Saanen are all publications of Müller Marketing und Druck AG. For additional information about the publications, please contact Müller Marketing und Druck AG at the address below:

PO Box 201, Kirchstrasse
3780 Gstaad, Switzerland

Tel: +41.33.748 88 74
Fax: +41.33.748 88 84

Email: produktion -at- mdruck.ch

Useful numbers

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  • Pharmacie Victor Haroun, Château-d'Oex
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  • Vets
  • Dr méd. vét. Jean-P. Lenoir, Château-d'Oex
  • Dr. med. vet. Felix Neff, Saanen
  • Tierärztliches Zentrum Arche, Saanen
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  • 117, 112 or
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