Media information

Herrenschwanden, September 2005,
A new organisation for historic hotels, guest houses and restaurants

In Switzerland starting early 2004, several historic hotels have come together under the trade name „Swiss Historic Hotels“, in a marketing venture. The mission of the founders of „Swiss Historic Hotels“ is to profile authentic historic hotels, guest houses and restaurantsof various ages and categories as cultural heritage, to put them under the spotlight and to give them an emotional revival.

With this, an all-round cultural experience should be arranged, able to provide a range of sensations and also incorporating the historical surroundings of the hotels and guesthouses.

Incomparable experiences

«An unforgettable experience awaits Swiss Historic Hotel guests, coming from a real historical background. Here, history can be lived in its original context, surrounded by culture and natural beauty», which is the pledge of the first associate hotels. They are as follows (in alphabetical order):

  • Brienz/BE Grandhotel Giessbach ***** («Historic Hotel of the Year 2004» *)
  • Basel/BS  Hotel Krafft *** (1873)
  • Château d’Oex Hotel Bon Accueil *** (1756)
  • Erlach/BE  Restaurant-Hotel St. Petersinsel (1127)
  • Flüeli-Ranft/OW Jugendstil-Hotel Paxmontana*** (Special commendation 2002 *)
  • Flühli/LU Hotel & Kurhaus Flühli (Spezial commendation 1998 *)
  • Kandersteg/BE Landgasthof Ruedihus (Special commendation 2000 *)
  • Montreux/VD Hotel Masson *** (Special commendation 1999 *)
  • Paspels/GR Schloss Sins (15th century)
  • Poschiavo/GR Hotel Albrici (Special commendation 1998 *)
  • Rorschacherberg Schloss Wartegg unique (1557)
  • Sils-Maria/GR  Hotel Waldhaus ***** («Historic Hotel of the Year 2005» *)
  • Soglio/GR  Hotel Palazzo Salis («Historic Hotel of the Year 1998» *)
  • Splügen/GR Alte Herberge Weiss Kreuz (Special commendation 2002 *)
  • Sils-Maria/GR Hotel Waldhaus ***** («Historic Hotel of the Year 2005» *)
  • St.Luc/VS Gd Hotel Bella Tola *** (Historic Hotel of the Year 2001*)
  • Soglio/GR Hotel Palazzo Salis («Historic Hotel of the Year 1998»*)
  • Turbenthal/ZH gasthof Gyrenbad («Historic Hotel of the Year 1997»*)
  • Vaduz/FL Gasthof Löwen Vaduz (dating back to 1388)
  • Zermatt/VS Hotel Monte Rosa **** (established 1853)

* These awards are presented every year by the Swiss section of ICOMOS (International Council on Monuments and Sites) bestowed on outstanding examples of historic Swiss hotels and restaurants.

For the time being, these establishments form the core of the group, which will later represent 15, then around 20 to 35 historic hotels, guest houses, restaurants and cafés from the whole of Switzerland.

Taking history into the future

Over twenty per cent of Swiss travellers appreciate culture and natural beauty, demonstrated by market research. These visitors are looking for genuine architecture and interior decoration as well as sensory experiences, combined with historic opportunities– like hotels, guest houses, restaurants, cafés, steam trains, steam boats, mountain trains, walks by the lake, heritage museums etc.

Switzerland, like almost no other country, is full of such historic and cultural treasures. This special, unique opportunity is, for the Swiss, „in their backyard“ and is located at a short distance from the main foreign markets of Germany, the Benelux countries, Great Britain and Italy.

Many of these valuable treasures of Swiss culture and history have been left lying hidden until recently. For a long time „historical“ meant dusty, old, out of fashion. For a few years now, many guests have rediscovered the charisma and charm of these objects. Genuine and atmospheric experiences are increasingly sought after.

More and more hotel keepers are becoming aware that genuine historic offers have a future. They are dusting off buildings and rooms, releasing the ancient historic contents, retaining their old furniture and paintings and making them sparkle. They are finding that with warm hospitality and high quality of service, these guest houses are irresistible.

New areas of experience...

As a marketing cooperative, Swiss Historic Hotels wants to improve the sales opportunities of its associates. This will be achieved by packaging attractive offers and marketing them at home and abroad. Through cooperation with funding agencies, having historic and cultural opportunities at their disposal (for example museums, trains and boats), new experiences and holidays will be created. It is also intended to revive the legendary Swiss tradition of good quality service and hospitality – in the spirit of undoubtedly the most famous Swiss hotelier: César Ritz.

Swiss Historic Hotels are committed to the preservation and revival of the cultural elements of historical hotel buildings and guesthouses. With this, they also aim to contribute to raising the profile of Switzerland as a country with a wealth of historical and cultural treasures ...and real historical content

How is Swiss Historic Hotels different from other hotel cooperatives?

  • The establishments have been set up as hotels, guesthouses or restaurants in historical buildings, latest by 1960.
  • Buildings, rooms and facilities are entirely or predominantly classified as historic by the association ICOMOS (International Council on Monuments and Sites) and the «Centre de compétence histORhotel».
  • The „hardware“ (Buildings and surrounding area, rooms, furniture, lighting etc.) and „software“ (service management, personnel, cultural commitment) are largely constructed around the historic original and provide a high quality experience.
  • The establishments are marked by a particularly high quality of service performance in all areas, according to category

Swiss Historic Hotels join Historic Hotels of Europe (HHE)

Since January 2005 Swiss Historic Hotels is partner of «Historic Hotels of Europe HHE». Thus Swiss Historic Hotels enlarge their incoming markets. And they offer to their clients an attractive choice of travel suggestions to more than 1'000 historic Hotels, castles, manors, guesthouses and inns througout Europe und the United States.

The objective of the Historic Hotels of Europe is the promotion of a unique cultural and historic heritage, which offers guests authentic high quality places of accommodation, fine regional cuisine and who also practise the art of hospitality in its purest tradition.

Partners of Historic Hotels of Europe in 13 countries are such estimated organisations as Pousadas de Portugal, Estancias de Espana, Abitare La Storia Italien, Chateaux & Hotels de France, Schlosshotels und Herrenhäuser in Österreich, Gast im Schloss in Deutschland, Ireland’s Blue Book, De Historiske Hotels Norway etc. (

A marketing agreement between HHE and «Historic Hotels of America» improves the awareness for these authentic landmarks on both sides of the atlantic ocean. (

Culture oriented founders

Swiss Historic Hotels came into being from an initiative by hotelleriesuisse (the Swiss Hoteliers Association), ICOMOS Schweiz and other associates from the fields of tourism, hotels, restaurants, marketing and culture.

The tourism entrepreneur Peter Kühler is responsible for the marketing of Swiss Historic Hotels. His company MarkeTeam has taken on the conceptual and operational elements of marketing the associate hotels and restaurants to establish and promote the group and to increase the demand for its services.

Contact address:
Swiss Historic Hotels
Roland Hunziker
CH-3000 Bern