Chedi Andermatt hotel review: East meets West in the Swiss Alps
Eastern design and Alpine tradition await guests at this glamorous hotel
The location of this beautiful luxury hotel is what defines its character. Andermatt is situated at the centre of historic trade routes that run across the Alps and for centuries locals were among the very first customers of new fashion and luxury goods arriving from Milan and southern Europe.
Kuala Lumpur-based architect Jean-Michel Gathy has taken this history into account in the design of this sleek, modern mountain hotel, which is ideal for discerning guests with a taste for the Oriental.
Chedi Andermatt is easily accessible by road, but the journey by funicular train through the mountains is the perfect way to arrive at this exclusive enclave 1,447 metres above sea level.
Upon arrival, the sheer scale of the chalet immediately impresses, with its soaring vaulted ceilings and huge lobby. The interior is an attractive mix of materials - local stone, wood and leather - which create a sense of warmth and luxury. It’s an odd sensation to feel instantly at home and simultaneously as though you have arrived somewhere very exotic.
Watching guests relax in the soothing glow of the fireplaces, you begin notice the subtle Asian detailing of the spaces, but turn a corner and you arrive at the chic and superbly kitsch Living Room and Bar which is pure Alpine luxury, with its fur and leather seating.
The generous rooms have wooden shutters to create a sense of sanctuary. Open fireplaces ignite at the flick of a switch and super comfortable Hästens beds ensure a blissful night’s sleep.
At the heart of the hotel lies the Spa and Health Club combining Swiss techniques with traditional Asian therapies. In addition to massage and detox treatments this superb spa provides extensive residential retreat programmes with expert advice on diet and exercise. Gazing out on the snow covered mountains from the steaming outdoor pool, it is hard to think of a better place to escape the pressures of the modern world.
A highlight of the resort’s Asian-Western fusion is its Japanese restaurant. Step through the linen drapes, ascend a candle-lit passage and you will be transported into an authentic world of expertly created sushi, sashimi and traditional delights. The signature kaiseki meal with each course paired with a sublime sake is not to be missed.
Dining is an integral part of the exceptional Chedi Andermatt experience. At the main restaurant, freshly made gnocchi using local ingredients is paired with mouth-watering dim sum. And if you haven’t experienced fusion overload, you can finish your meal with a visit to the ‘cheese room’ a soaring glass column in the centre of the restaurant with an incredibly extensive cheese collection.
Away from the luxuries of the resort itself, Chedi Andermatt also provides exceptional skiing, with a team of ski butlers at hand to provide guests with advice, equipment and a meet-and-greet service at the base of the nearby slopes.
A newly opened chair lift from the resort and extensive development of new pistes makes Andermatt a serious contender for some of the very best skiing in the Alps including a black-run descent named after the Olympic champion Bernhard Russi if you dare.
Chedi Andermatt has also made itself an appealing out-of-season destination, for those who crave a dose of Alpine sunshine and fresh air. The hotel’s activity packages include golf at courses nearby, cycling and trekking with expert guides and a series of ‘artisan’ experiences including goat herding and cheese making.
Andermatt was regarded as the peak of sophisticated tourism during the Belle Epoque; the Chedi Andermatt Hotel offers a taste of that glorious bygone age, while simultaneously presenting a glimpse of the future.
Grand Deluxe rooms start at £385 per night including breakfast, spa entry, and the club minibar (alcoholic beverages).
Fly to Zurich Airport and then train to Andermatt with a Swiss Transfer Ticket, with prices from £116 in second class or £188 in first class. To buy tickets visit: www.swisstravelsystem.co.uk.
For more information please visit: www.thechediandermatt.com/en