The Genius Idea
When my partner in crime Evelyn Gorgos, Director of Communications of the Tschuggen Hotel Group, asked me what I thought about gathering together a lot of good bloggers in sunny Ticino (the Italian part of Switzerland) and let them enjoy two luxury days in Hotel Eden Roc, I thought it was the best idea I had heard for a while. Why?
The Tropics of Switzerland
First of all, Ticino is nicknamed the tropics of Switzerland. The combination of sun, palm trees, blue skies and waters, and the stunning backdrop of mountains and snow makes it immediately recognizible, and the ideal scenery for Instagram photos. Second, Geri and I had already been in two of the 5 stars hotels of the Tschuggen Group, The Tschuggen Gand Hotel Arosa and the Carlton in St.Moritz. We knew how outstanding the hotels are, how incredibly well located, and how friendly their service is. Finally, Evelyn is a master at organising press trips – being able to work with her was the perfect way to learn from the best.
So we put together a list of people and a schedule. Starting point: Zurich main station. From there, we would go to Ticino for a day of activities, and then for a second day of total relax.
After the train ride (which felt like a school trip to me, with us girls giggling and already taking pictures of everything, while the boys tried to behave) we checked into the hotel. Drinks watching the sunset hit the evening off. A small speech by Andreas Gartmann, general manager of the hotel, welcomed us. Here are the first pictures – the location is just unbelievable.
Distracting the Cooks
It was finally time for dinner, which was organised in the big kitchen of the La Casetta restaurant. At the beginning we all felt a bit awkward for intruding and interrupting the chefs’ work. But after a while (and in this case the fact that Geri and I speak Italian made the conversation very easy) everybody started to relax. The cooks dared making some comments about how cute some of the bloggers were. We (guests) asked questions and even got the chance to put our hands into the wonderful food. A dj appeared in the kitchen. Marie and Manuela started to dance like real gangsta – and made everybody else move! Their energy was contagious. The highlight was when we all went into a conga line: cooks, bloggers, hotel manager, and everybody else. As usual, the staff of the hotel was working hard, but also ready for a laugh and to entertain us. Ok; the pictures of the evening, due to the darkness and the alcohol, are too blurred. So I post here only some of the kitchen’s creations during our stay.
In the morning I was woken up by some noises from the pool: Minea of Aenymblaze, Marie of Wallaceyolicia, Saranda Reci of Srfashionart and Manuela Oppikofer had put a camera on a table and were doing a whole photo shooting with self-timer, not to disturb anyone. But they were laughing so much that we all could her them from the open windows. They looked lovely in front of the water and in the middle of palm trees. After this, we all had a slow breakfast in the sun and off we went to the next activity.
The Boat And The Gardens
A one-hour boat trip from the hotel to the Brissago island was yet another occasion to relax and take photos. We arrived at the Botanic Gardens and had a lovely stroll in the nature. If you want to have a relaxing break in the middle of colours, this is for sure an idea to copy.
On our way back home we were greeted by Carlo Rampazzi, the deliciously extravagant architect and designer behind all hotels of the Tschuggen Group. Rampazzi arrived straight from the Salone del Mobile in Milan especially to meet us bloggers. He told us how he refuses to follow any trend and simply follows his instinct. I want people to open their doors and go:wow! He said. They can have beige and minimalismus in their houses – when they arrive in luxury hotels they want to experience something more, and different.
Dinner was spent at the Marina restaurant – once more a place with a view, full of natural light. From now on, the program said, everybody was free to do what they wanted.
The last day was totally free – some people went to the pool, some to the village, some to the SPA. Once more, the staff was incredibly helpful and kept spoiling us with little treats. We also appreciated being able to do what we wanted, when we wanted, without a program. Rampazzi was right: we all have a nice place at home and our normality – what we need on holiday is special, top quality, and to go wow. If you look for an extraordinary experience, Eden Roc might be just the right place to try.