Switch mode

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.

Swiss Deluxe Hotels Stories Winter 2022 Suite Talk Widder Penthouse Suite 01 AS4I7075 Bearb V2 Ecirgb

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:


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.


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.


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

Related Stories

Zurich is the largest Swiss city – with vineyards. At the beginning of the 20th century, there were 400 hectares of vineyards across what is now the city. Today there are still 14 hectares planted with all kinds of varieties. Of course, there used to be many more.

Discover more

I swiftly glance at my watch to be sure. Yes, it has indeed been only 38 minutes since I shut off my laptop at home in Zurich’s Seefeld district, and the moment I find myself in now, checking in with the concierge at the Dolder Grand’s SPA. It’s only early afternoon, but I feel I’ve done enough work for today. Admittedly, this renders my spontaneously booked hometown beauty getaway that tiny bit more decadent. I have brought a book along in the hopes of some peace and quiet, but … would you like to join me instead?

Discover more

Not short of its fair share of bars and cocktail lounges, Zurich boasts a bar for every type of patron. From white glove service to underground grunge and contemporary mixology, we feature ten of our favourite watering holes in the city.

Discover more

Mummy, is that lady in a bathrobe and towel turban the mother of the richest man in the world? One of my daughters asked me that while we more or less tiptoed into the Grand Hôtel du Lac Spa, trying not to be too obvious with our espionage.

Discover more

Founded in 1834, the iconic Hotel des Bergues was Switzerland’s first palace and Geneva’s very first hotel. A weighty landmark in its own right, it is considered by many as the number one address in town among the many upscale waterfront hotels that host Geneva’s well-to-do visitors flocking in from all four corners of the planet.

Discover more

It would be a bit of a stretch, considering I can hardly breathe in an underwired bra – but nonetheless, I can’t help picturing myself swanning daintily through the extra-wide, historic halls of Montreux’ legendary Le Fairmont Palace in my hooped skirts. But I’ll be damned if I let my old-timey daydreams get in the way of three days of proper pampering on the shores of beautiful Lake Geneva.

Discover more

At the Vinitaly international wine and spirits exhibition in 1992, Reto Vergani from Zurich decided to make a bold move and bulk buy grappa. His father was shocked when he saw the order form. And then he saw that the excise tax was ten times higher than the price of the product!

Discover more