An extensive revamp of stately Swiss hotel Grand Resort Quellenhof, which has courted countless celebrities and royal family members over its 150 years, will only reaffirm its status as one of Europe’s most exclusive spa retreats. Drawing well-heeled guests the world over as long as it’s been drawing thermal waters from the surrounding Alps, this £35 million facelift marks the start of a new, contemporary identity for the grande dame of illustrious wellness and medical health complex Grand Resort Bad Ragaz.
For a property so rooted in locality, it felt natural to enlist a local to lead the renovations. Swiss interior designer Claudio Carbone, whose luxury hotels, residences and restaurants are largely concentrated in Switzerland, has framed the hotel’s integral connection to the alpine spring as a thread that runs through its design. Nowhere is it more evident than upon arrival in the lobby, where guests are greeted by a 16-metre-high chandelier which spans all four floors and is wrapped by the grand staircase. Crafted by Czech glassblowers Sans Souci Lighting from 2500 glass fragments, its waterfall comparisons are more than convincing.
It’s but one example of a renovation marked by a commitment to bespoke design and craftsmanship, which is also seen in the commission of over a hundred glass objets d’arts which are placed like jewels throughout the hotel. Moulded and hand-shaped using the bark of trees from the surrounding Alpine forests, these generous vessels are hewn via traditional techniques by Valner, a collective of artisans working from a small glassmaking studio.
Within the refurbed rooms and suites, the hotels’ luxurious character has been carefully preserved – all have been lavishly appointed with walnut and marble flooring, hand-blown crystal chandeliers and exclusively-designed furniture. There’s also two new restaurants, both headed up by award-winning (and previously Michelin starred) chef Sven Wassmer, to join the six already on site. ‘verve by sven’ (top) is centred around a hand-beaten silver-clad circular bar, with intimate silver-backed space age seating pods, while ‘Memories’ is Wassmer’s signature fine dining experience, which seamlessly integrates kitchen and dining spaces to give guests a closer look at the team’s minimalist take on Swiss alpine fare.
Three new fountains, too, will offer guests a continuous flow of fresh thermal water, but it’s the compelling trio of fine food, fine service and fine design that the hotel hopes will attract a new generation of wellness-seekers to this idyllic Alpine spot.
Nightly rates at Grand Hotel Quellenhof start from CHF 890/ £677, based on double occupancy. Rates includes breakfast, welcome aperitif, use of the Thermal Spa area and Tamina Therme, fresh fruit and Ragaz water each day and daily fitness and relaxation lessons. Grand Resort Bad Ragaz, Bernhard-Simonstrasse, 7310 Bad Ragaz, Switzerland, T: +41 81 303 3030, resortragaz.ch