Open for business

Fri, 26. Jun. 2020

At the time of writing, shops, restaurants and cafés are among the businesses recently allowed to open. The borders with Germany, Austria and France are scheduled to open in a matter of days, with the hope that Italy will follow soon afterward.

It has been three months since lockdowns were put in place across Europe. No country has escaped unscathed from COVID-19, but while some nations are still grappling with the question of how to get things moving again, with a low number of new infections Switzerland has recently announced a significant relaxation in restrictions.

At the time of writing, shops, restaurants and cafés are among the businesses recently allowed to open. The borders with Germany, Austria and France are scheduled to open in a matter of days, with the hope that Italy will follow soon afterward.

This is welcome news. As we approach the beginning of the summer season, the Saanenland is getting ready to do what it does best: invite guests to come up, slow down.

Shopping
All shops are now allowed to open. They are taking safety precautions extremely seriously, with hand sanitiser, single use gloves or even face masks available to customers. Coop and Migros both operate a one entrance and one exit policy, as well as keep a tally of customers in the shop, while the smaller businesses restrict the number of shoppers to just two or three people at a time.

With the exception of peak hours when you might have to queue for a little, the impact of this has been minimal. Once inside you’ll notice little difference.

Hospitality excellence
Things really started to feel more normal when the hotels and restaurants were allowed to trade again. Hospitality is the lifeblood of the region.
While the larger hotels have delayed their reopening until early July, others have already started to welcome visitors. At the Hotel Christiania the focus on visitor safety is paramount, with restrictions on the number of guests permitted in public spaces at one time, but the welcome, food and experience is as excellent as ever.
The restaurants have similarly adapted well. At the Rialto, for instance, there is more distance between tables, but the atmosphere and food have not changed at all.

Nature
While the large summer events have unfortunately though unsurprisingly been cancelled, you will not be at a loss for activities and entertainment during your visit. Saanenland is famed for its magnificent landscape. With hundreds of trails and paths at your disposal, this is a safe and super opportunity to enjoy the great outdoors. For the less active guests, the views are as staggering as ever – a wonderful tonic to restore your batteries.

Hair salons
Sales of clippers and hair dye have skyrocketed across Europe and hair salons in the UK may not open for many months. But in Switzerland it is possible to visit a hair salon or barber for a professional Illustrations: Adobe Stock cut. What better time to treat yourself than on a visit to the Saanenland?

Open for business
So the message is clear: the Saanenland is taking all appropriate precautions for the safety and security of residents and visitors alike, but the region is very much open for business. So why not come up, slow down? We look forward to welcoming you soon.

Anna Charles

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Gastronomy faces very difficult situation

Only four people per table, curfew at 11pm and compulsory masks as soon as you walk around in the restaurant: The corona measures are drastic for the gastronomy. A small survey shows that many establishments that are open are hit hard.