CHECK IT OUT KAMEHA GRAND ZURICH, SWITZER­LAND

The Weekend Australian - Travel - - Travel & Indulgence -

Zurich’s new­est ho­tel lies on a busy road just six min­utes from the air­port, but that’s the only dull thing to say about the ex­tremely di­vert­ing Kameha Grand.

The prop­erty fea­tures choco­late-box in­te­ri­ors cour­tesy of Dutch de­sign mae­stro Mar­cel Wan­ders (think gi­ant cow­bell lobby lights), themed suites and Maserati air­port trans­fers. It sits at the heart of a rapidly de­vel­op­ing busi­ness precinct, yet guests are only mo­ments from for­est, lake and mead­ows and 15 min­utes on a tram from down­town. There are even alpine views from the rooftop spa ter­race.

Wan­ders has had a lot of fun with the ho­tel’s 245 gue­strooms and suites, tak­ing ev­ery Swiss cliche you can think of — choco­late, those cow­bells, and even the ar­cane art of scheren­schnitte (pa­per cut out) — and giv­ing them a con­tem­po­rary twist.

The dark, leather-up­hol­stered slid­ing door sep­a­rat­ing king bed from bath­tub re­sem­bles a block of choco­late, the mini bar and cof­fee ma­chine are hid­den in a bank vault, the desk lamp is a cow­bell while the back of the gold-flecked sofa is so like a Toblerone you might be tempted to have a nib­ble.

Sounds naff but it’s not. The moody rooms, dubbed neo baroque by the ho­tel’s mar­ket­ing pun­dits, are stylish, in­cred­i­bly quiet and high tech with push­but­ton blinds, mas­sive wall-mounted tele­vi­sion (read­ily view­able from the bath in the deluxe cat­e­gory rooms) and free and fast Wi-Fi. Bath­rooms are large and well de­signed with loads of shelf space, good light­ing and full-sized Molton Brown toi­letries (but let’s lose the mir­rored walls in the loo please).

Up­stairs you’ll find a state of the art gym, out­door ter­race and an all-white day spa fea­tur­ing four treat­ment rooms and a slick re­lax­ation lounge dom­i­nated by a wall of fire. Down­stairs, smok­ers are well served with a club-style cigar lounge and an ex­otic shisha par­lour. Meet­ing fa­cil­i­ties in­clude a dra­matic ple­nary hall that might have been dressed by Lady Gaga.

DON’T MISS: A drink in Pure­Gold, where the walls are lined with shiny lu­cre and you can charge your phone via in­duc­tion on the bar top. There’s a DJ Thurs­days and Fri­days and pretty cup­cakes and other good­ies from the in-house pas­try chef ev­ery af­ter­noon. DINING IN: In the groovy L’Unico with its open kitchen and tiled ta­bles you’ll find house-made pasta and Ital­ian-style tapas from chef Igino Bruni. The tiny Yu Ni­jyo is fine dining and bookings are rec­om­mended.

DINING OUT: Drop by Hiltl in the city, the world’s old­est veg­e­tar­ian restau­rant. Try the no-meat tartare.

ASK THE CONCIERGE: Both ho­tel restau­rants (and most of Switzer­land) are closed Sun­day nights so if you’re stay­ing in, you’ll need to grab a bar snack or or­der room ser­vice. And if it’s the surf ’n’ turf burger you’re af­ter (wagyu, lob­ster and truf­fle mayo) you might need to break into that mini bank vault to find the CHF79 ($107) re­quired.

CHECK­ING IN: Open­ing rates from CHF199 ($270) to Au­gust 15. More: kame­ha­grandzuerich.com.

ALSO TRY: The Mira Hong Kong; An­daz Am­s­ter­dam, Prin­sen­gracht; Mon­drian South Beach Miami.

CHRISTINE McCABE

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