A Swiss Journey To Lake Lucerne: Bürgenstock Resort
Lake Lucerne in Switzerland is surrounded by majestic mountains and often compared to views that one sees in a Fjord landscape. Here's a wonderful feature from one of our favorite alliance partners!
By: Perrie Hartz Courtesy Hidden Doorways
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The principle lake of central Switzerland, Lake Lucerne is gorgeously encapsulated by sprawling limestone mountains on all four sides, making the view from anywhere around its glistening, pristine turquoise waters almost too beautiful to be real. Both the unparalleled vistas and central location have played a part in making Lucerne the leading lakeside town in a region historically well-noted for its many populous summer resorts. The surrounding mountains evoke an almost Fjord-like landscape, yet unlike the icy Nordic lands, Lucerne is blessed with a mild climate, perfect for visiting at any time of year, yet ideal during the balmy summer months when activity on and around the lake is thriving.
This region has an incredibly rich story of the heyday of Swiss lakeside luxury, back when the world’s glitterati would descend on Bürgenstock, which dates back to 1871, where beloved stars like Audrey Hepburn (who quietly married in 1954 in a little white chapel located on this iconic Swiss lakeside resort), Sophia Loren, Sean Connery and Charlie Chaplin sought refuge. Bürgenstock also served as a filming location for one of the most iconic of all the Bond films, Goldfinger. To call Bürgenstock iconic would almost be an understatement; this sprawling multi-hotel resort property is steeped in so much history and glamour that it is nothing less than legendary.
A rich and glamorous history can only take a resort so far, which Bürgenstock is well aware of, and which is why the entire 145-year old property was completely and painstakingly renovated and subsequently reopened in 2017 in all its modern brilliance. Today, Bürgenstock Resort Lake Lucerne is one of the largest resorts in Europe, spread across 148 forested acres and comprised of the Bürgenstock Hotel & Alpine Spa, Palace Hotel, Waldhotel Health & Medical Excellence and Spa, Tavern 1879, Grand Residential Suites, and Lakeview Residence Villas.
The jewel in the resort’s crown and it’s five-star flagship property, Bürgenstock Hotel & Alpine Spa revels in its modernity and sleek nordic design, while still paying homage to its storied past with Art Deco-inspired interiors, impeccable service, and the same stunning, unforgettable panoramic view of the lake and alps that was gazed upon in wonder by guests over a century ago. The hotel has 102 rooms and suites, each reflecting the modern architecture and minimalistic design of the gleaming new glass building, and all with incredible views over Lake Lucerne, ranging in size from 450-7,298 sq. ft. Each room comes equip with Nespresso machines and mini bars, as well as complimentary WiFi.
The Bürgenstock Hotel’s impressive 10,000 square meter Alpine Spa is the largest wellness facility in Europe. Open year-round, it boasts breathtaking views of the lake and alps, and a truly spectacular grand infinity pool like no other that stretches out over the mountain’s edge, seemingly floating weightlessly midair, high above the glistening lake below. Choose from a wide variety of holistic wellness treatments, enjoy the privacy of its luxurious and spacious spa suites, take a stroll in the lovely spa garden, or take advantage of its fully equipped fitness center.
Bürgenstock Resort’s aim to continue moving forward into the future while maintaining and honoring its storied past is no better reflected than in the Palace Hotel, a true blend of modernity and history. Built in 1903, the Palace is the oldest remaining original hotel on the property, complete with the same grand marble columns that dotted the lobby halls when it first opened its doors. While designated as the resort’s conference hotel, there is no lack of warmth or elegance at the Palace, whose 109 rooms and suites seamlessly fuse elements of classical grandness with light contemporary touches. Its spacious event venues are the perfect settings for special celebrations and meetings for both business and leisure guests.
The Palace Hotel’s chic RitzCoffier restaurant is conveniently located here, a renown eatery that serves contemporary French cuisine in a sumptuous and elegant atmosphere.
For guests seeking a truly immersive wellness experience that goes beyond a visit to the spa, there is the Waldhotel Health & Medical Excellence, an architecturally stunning wellness-oriented hotel and clinical spa facility. Designed by renowned architect Matteo Thun, Waldhotel manages to achieve a chic, elevated style without forgetting its identity as a center for wellness and innovative medical treatment.
The facility has 137 rooms and suites, as well as the renown 14,000 square ft. Waldhotel Regeneration Spa, where guests can escape the stress and chaos of daily life and enter a world of pure relaxation and rejuvenation. Other health and medical facilities on the premises include a Dental clinic, a Dermatology & Skincare clinic, and a Health & Medical Center that specializes in preventative care. Additionally, Waldhotel’s 23-room Rehabilitation Clinic offers sublime, calming lake views while providing guests with specialized medical check-ups and post-operative convalescence.
Guests who require more space and privacy may choose to stay in Bürgenstock Resort Lake Lucerne’s Grand Residential Suites and 10 Lakeview Residence Villas, designed to look and feel like chic Alpine chalets. In addition, the Panorama Residence Suites are modern and sleek with neutral toned and minimal accents and interiors, and expansive private terraces boasting sprawling mountain views.
For a more rustic, quintessentially Swiss experience, guests can stay at Taverne 1879, an utterly cozy Alpine-style tavern and historic inn with 12 traditionally-furnished cozy guest rooms. With a homey atmosphere and unique local charm, this wood-accented chalet exudes history and modernity at the same time. Besides being conveniently located within one of the property’s most iconic eateries, this delightful inn also has a spacious, sun-drenched terrace that invites guests to linger from morning to evening and take in the unique and unobstructed view of the Swiss alps from the southern side of the lake. Taverne 1879 is also pet friendly and happy to welcome guests along with furry companions.
In addition to Taverne 1879’s traditionally Swiss cuisine of fondue, raclette, Älplermagronen and Kalbsleberli, Bürgenstock Resort Lake Lucerne offer a staggering 9 more restaurants and dining options on property, each slightly different in ambiance, design, and cuisine.
Highlights of these include RitzCoffier, the Palace Hotel’s effortlessly elegant French-inspired restaurant that honors its impressive history by celebrating legendary chefs Cesar Ritz and Auguste Escoffier, who cooked together in Lucerne in the late-1800’s. Luxuriating on regal brocade sofas set against the backdrop of a stunning marble fireplace, guests can enjoy haute French cuisine and a glass of wine or champagne before (or after) dinner in the Salon 1903 Palace Lounge and outdoor Terrace, with an ambiance so chic that even James Bond himself (played by Sean Connery, who used to dine here frequently), would certainly approve.
At Bürgenstock Hotel & Alpine Spa, Spices Kitchen & Terrace offers a unique celebration of Asian cuisine, melding together the distinct flavors of Japan, chia, India, and Thailand. Guests have the chance to take part in an exclusive and immersive culinary experience at Spices Kitchen by joining the brilliant Chef Chatsorn as a sous-chef for the day, learning all about the art of Asian cuisine as they help to prepare the Chef’s Table menu in a kitchen with an unforgettable view over Lake Lucerne.
Other culinary options include: Lakeview Bar & Cigar Lounge,Oak Grill & Pool Patio, The Sharq Oriental Restaurant, and Osteria Alpina-Terrazza, which specializes in traditional Italian dishes amidst a stunning Alpine setting. Enjoy healthy fare at Verbena Restaurant & Bar at the Waldhotel Health & Medical Excellence. Culinary excellence is an integral part of the Bürgenstock Hotels & Resort experience. From haut cuisine to imaginative, eclectic dishes and modern versions of beloved classic Swiss recipes, the talented chefs and sommeliers make sure that the cuisine truly shines amidst so many other incredible resort highlights.
Bürgenstock Resort Lake Lucerne is essentially a town within itself. And with multiple exclusive amenities like shops and boutiques, a cinema, children’s program, swimming pools, a historic chapel, and private shuttle boat between Lucerne and Kehrsitten where guests can explore these charming cities, as well as activities such as ample hiking in summer, alpine skiing and heli-skiing off-piste in winter, a 9-hole alpine golf course, yoga, tennis, the historic Hammetschwand Lift (the highest outdoor lift in Europe), and a plethora of water sports on Lake Lucerne, guests will want for nothing, no matter the season. Guests can also visit local farms where they can milk cows and learn how to produce cheese which can be shipped to their homes to enjoy as a souvenir. Plus, with the exceptional personalized service of a dedicated concierge, they will have every bit of Swiss luxury at their fingertips—after all, the glitterati would expect no less.
Arriving There are several ways to arrive at Bürgenstock Lake Lucerne. Besides the 30-minute boat chauffeur from Lucerne and funicular ride, guests can chose to simply arrive by car, take a private plane to Buochs Regional Airport (approximately 7-miles away), land via helicopter on one of the many heli-pads located around the resort property, fly into Zurich International airport (approximately 50-miles away), or arrive by train (Lucerne Railway Station is approximately 7 miles away).
**Perrie Hartz is a freelance writer based in New York and a frequent contributor for Hidden Doorways.
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