Hotel Grimsel Hospiz: Switzerland's winter oasisGrimselpass, Switzerland
Sunk deep in metres of snow atop a mountain overlooking Switzerland's Lake Grimsel is a magical winter getaway. At the Hotel Grimsel Hospiz, the past and the present merge. It's a place of firsts; the first certified guesthouse of Switzerland was located at this exact spot, way back in 1142. Then, almost 800 years later, Grimsel Hospiz caused quite a sensation when it became the Europe's first house to be heated via electricity in 1932. Following a complete renovation, the 4-star alpine hotel melds its history with modernity, taking advantage of its location in the heart of the KWO catchment area (a sustainable hydroelectric power producer) to heat the entire property by using hydroelectric waste-heat so you'll be toasty warm in these cooler temps.
The hotel is an idyllic place to switch off from the world – think cosy boudoirs, crackling fires, open-air restaurant with sweeping views across the powdered peaks and Lake Grimsel, and steaming hot tub – but it's the journey to your dreamy winter hideaway that's the true kicker. The winter snows thwart a direct route to the property, so you'll be swapping the traditional hotel transfer for a series of stunning journeys by bus and gondola where you'll be accompanied by a hotel visitor guide.
Meet your guide at the headquarters of the KWO in Innertkirchen, where you'll board your bus to Handeck, then journey by gondola from Handeck to Gerstenegg. The bus ride through the tunnel system of the power plants ends at Sommerloch, where you take the final gondola up through the mountains to Hotel Grimsel Hospiz. Once at the hotel, you'll find yourself in a peaceful and pristine world, far away from the hustle.
- The hotel’s fascinating history
- Switching off from the trappings of regular life and immersing yourself in your cosy, snowy surrounds
- Admiring the views from the deliciously steaming hot tub
- The journey there may be a bit arduous for those who’d prefer a more direct route
- Making the frosty walk back from the hot tub
You can use the Swiss Travel Pass, an all-in-one ticket that covers rail, road and water journeys, to get around Switzerland. Meet your guide at the headquarters of the KWO in Innertkirchen. From here you’ll take a stunning journey to Hotel Grimsel Hospiz via bus and gondola.
- Mountain or lake views
- Flatscreen TV
- Free wifi
Double rooms, including buffet brunch, coffee and cakes, and hot tub access, start from US$160 per person, per night.