One of Switzerland’s most famous hotels, Bürgenstock Resort Lake Lucerne, is to re-open its doors on August 28th, following a nine-year, US$569 million construction project.
The work has seen the historic hideaway restored as an exclusive destination for health, leisure and culture tourists, as well as MICE and business travellers.
Switzerland has enjoyed increasing popularity with Middle East visitors for many years, due to its reputation for luxury hospitality, crystal blue lakes, alpine forests and snow-capped mountains.
Perched 500 meters above Lake Lucerne, the kilometre-long, car-free resort is accessible by private boat from Lucerne and will comprise four hotels: the five-star superior Bürgenstock Hotel, the five-star Waldhotel Healthy Living, the four-star Palace Hotel and the three-star Pension Taverne 1879.
With a total of 383 rooms and suites, the complex will feature a Healthy Living centre, 12 bars and restaurants, 67 residence suites, a cinema and a 10,000 sqm Alpine Spa.
Well positioned for luxury MICE travellers, the resort has a conference centre with a total of 31 rooms, which can accommodate up to 800 guests in addition to a wide range of leisure activities including golf, mountain biking, ice skating and tennis.
The reopening of Bürgenstock is also good news for the local economy.
Two hundred members of staff have already been hired with a further two hundred required by August.
When the resort is running at full capacity in 2020, it will employ around 600 staff.
“A study by BAK Basel Economics has indicated that the resort has immense value-creating potential.
“Once operating at full capacity, it could be contributing as much as US$145 million gross value to the Central Swiss economy, creating 1,100 new direct and indirect jobs, making it the second-largest employer in the Swiss region of Canton Nidwalden,” Robert Herr, general manager, Bürgenstock Resort.
Preserving the historic charm that made the Bürgenstock famous, restoration work has focused on the original attractions created by Bucher and Durrer such as the Cliff Path and the Hammetschwand Lift, which first opened in 1905, the Bürgenstock Funicular Railway, opened in 1888, and the resort’s heritage-protected buildings.
First imagined by Franz Josef Bucher and Josef Durrer in 1871, the resort rose to fame in the 1950s and 60s, when the biggest names in politics and entertainment would descend on the lake-side paradise, including Indian prime minister Indira Gandhi, US president Jimmy Carter, film stars Sophia Loren and Audrey Hepburn, who married Mel Ferrer in the resort’s chapel in 1954.
The Bürgenstock Alpine Spa features three pools – one indoor, a large outdoor heated infinity pool, as well as a historic outdoor pool in the private garden – saunas and a Hammam steam room, whirlpool baths, 15 treatment rooms and three private spas.
The Waldhotel and the Alpine Spa both open in autumn 2017.