Chetzeron, the outstanding altitude escape
Perched on a mountaintop 2,112 metres above sea level, Chetzeron is a ski-in, ski-out hotel as stylish as they come.
The striking brick building, which was previously a gondola station, sits high above the Swiss resort of Crans Montana, offering a peaceful escape from the busy scene below. Recently transformed into a hip design hotel with a distinctly Scandinavian aesthetic, with just 16 rooms, even at full capacity it does not feel crowded.
Pleasingly inaccessible, simply getting there is an adventure: you’ll need to ski, walk or ride in on a snowmobile. It’s well worth the effort though for the stunning views alone. Facing south, the hotel looks across the Rhone valley, taking in countless snowy peaks from Mont Blanc to the Matterhorn.
Huge picture windows in both rooms and common areas make the best of the panoramic vistas, while generous use of wood, bold fabrics and contemporary furniture create an invitingly refined ambiance.
Open year round, in winter guests have direct access right from the terrace to 140 km of pistes, 20 km of cross country skiing tracks and a snow park to practice their tricks. In summer, the slopes become the domain of hikers, mountain bikers and golfers, and the heated outdoor pool truly comes into its own.
Whatever time of year one visits, after an action-packed day outdoors, the sleek wellness area, complete with a steam room, infra-red booth and sauna are the perfect antidote to tired, aching muscles.
Evenings can be spent cosying up next to the fireplace with a fine glass of Valais wine, before a dinner of fresh, seasonal, refined Alpine cuisine, and perhaps a post-meal cigar in the smoking room, before retreating to one of the spacious rooms or suites, which have been carefully designed to ensure one can lie in bed, or in the bath, and still be gazing out at the mountain peaks.
Best of all, this unique, high altitude hotel has been developed with environmental sensitivity: hot water and electricity are produced by an array of solar panels, the boiler is pellet-fired and heat produced by refrigeration systems is captured and re-used.