Suite Talk - Widder Penthouse Suite
The Widder Hotel is a fascinating amalgamation of townhouses from the 15th century spread across nine medieval buildings in the centre of Zurich’s old town. These structures have been skilfully combined to create space for 48 distinctive rooms and one exceptional Penthouse Suite.
The building’s 1995 opening came after ten years of work by Swiss architect Tilla Theus. The massive project involved an army of more than 1000 architects, builders, and designers. One of the most distinctive luxury boutique hotels in Europe, if not the entire globe, was created by effectively combining all the structures. To connect the numerous houses, Theus constructed bridges and interior corridors. Chrome, steel, and glass go well with the antique stone walls and beams. She gave each unit a name and decorated it with wood and stone in a particular way. The outcome is a successful blending of history, art, and design. Each of the hotel’s rooms and suites has been individually furnished, contrasting the 700-year history of the buildings with Memphis design from the 1990s, pop art accents, and design classics.
On the hotel’s top floor, the striking Penthouse Suite occupies two stories with charmed views over Zurich’s rooftop landscape. The main floor features a master bedroom with candid views through small windows, a well stocked bar, and a stylishly furnished living room in oak with minimal white furnishings and a small dining space. The interior décor of this suite of suites strongly emphasises art and design. One of the hotel’s original visitors, Rauschenberg, claimed to have enjoyed it so much that he produced a site-specific piece still on display in the Penthouse Suite today. This suite strikes a sophisticated balance between impossibilities, rendering it a triumphant blend of art and design. Thoughtful details, cutting-edge facilities, and stunning interiors push the envelope while still paying homage to the 100-year-old architectural elements that reflect the hotel’s rich history.
Guests of this suite enjoy what is likely to be one of the most extraordinary rooftop terraces in the city, one floor up through a narrow stairway. The roomy private patio is furnished with sun loungers and a seating area surrounded by casual greenery. The building, which is reputed to be the tallest in Zurich’s old town, offers breathtaking 360-degree views of the entire city.
The Widder is not only amazing to look at but also full of surprises and an epicentre of social life among Zurich’s hotspots, so anyone looking for a healthy dose of meeting and greeting won’t be let down. Along with its upscale eatery, it also houses AuGust, a haven for carnivores, the recently renovated inner court for light lunches serving as a true haven of peace during the warmer months, and of course, the Widder Bar, a Zurich institution.
Three reasons to leave the suite:
1. HAUTE CUISINE
Dine at the renowned Widder Restaurant, helmed by chef Stefan Heilemann, who was just named GaultMillau Chef of the Year 2021. Heilemann has developed his very own culinary style over his career, basing it on the principles of classic cuisine and adding impressions gained while travelling. While Heilemann expertly runs the kitchen, Stefano Petta ensures the front-of-house experience is on par.
2. URBAN PICNIC
During the warmer months, you can experience Zurich with the Widder’s Wild or Urban Picnics. Enjoy idyllic spots across the city, or have the team take you out to more remote natural surroundings, to the shores of Lake Zurich or the meadows close to Buech. Treat yourself to a wide selection of specially prepared delicacies from the hotel’s own farms, enjoy some quality wines and relax.
3. CITY ROMANCE
Feeling romantic? Ask the concierge to book a special moment à deux on the rooftop of the Widder’s sister Hotel Storchen or zip across Lake Zurich on the hotel’s own boat to immerse yourself on a culinary journey on the jetty in front of the swanky Alex Hotel with unobstructed views of Zurich’s skyline.
Words S. Hottinger-Behmer
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