TRIEDAND TESTED HO­TELS

Business Traveller - - CONTENTS -

Ho­tel At­lantis, Zurich; 25 Hours Ho­tel Zurich Langstrasse; Grand Cen­tral Ho­tel, Belfast; and The Palace Ho­tel, Lucerne

BACK­GROUND Ho­tel At­lantis by Giardino, to use its full name, is part of the Swiss Giardino group, which also has ho­tels in As­cona, Lake Mag­giore and Champfer. Owned by a Qatari in­vest­ment group, it is also a mem­ber of De­sign Ho­tels. The orig­i­nal Ho­tel At­lantis was de­signed in the late 1960s and opened in 1970. It lat­terly be­came the Ho­tel At­lantis Sher­a­ton, then shut in the early 2000s. It was ren­o­vated by Mono­plan and re­opened at the end of 2015.

WHERE IS IT? In Friesen­berg, 14km from Zurich air­port and 5km from the cen­tre of the city. The rail and tram sta­tions of Triemli are a five minute walk away (a 20-minute ride to the city cen­tre), and the ho­tel has a free shut­tle ser­vice run­ning ev­ery 30 min­utes to the main shop­ping street of Bahn­hof­s­trasse.

WHAT’S IT LIKE? The de­sign of the four­storey build­ing takes ad­van­tage of its slop­ing po­si­tion at the bot­tom of Zurich’s Uetliberg moun­tain for views and to catch the sun. ROOMS As part of the re­fur­bish­ment the room count has been re­duced from 149 to 95, although eight of these be­d­rooms are con­tained within the fourth-floor Pen­t­house suite, which is the big­gest ho­tel suite in Europe and is com­pletely dif­fer­ent from the rest of the ho­tel.

In the rooms, you’ll find Ital­ian man­u­fac­turer Molteni&C’s cus­tom-made in­te­ri­ors, with fur­nish­ings and fab­rics from names such as Pierre Frey, Alt­field and Zim­mer + Ro­hde. Tones are muted, but rich­ness comes via tex­ture. Walls are soft­ened with fab­ric and suede; desks, ta­bles and cab­i­nets have curves, trimmed in an­tique brass; dark wood doors have con­trast­ing fab­ric pan­els; and floor-to­ceil­ing mar­ble in the bath­rooms has been cho­sen for its strik­ing vein­ing.

Rooms at the back of the ho­tel look out on to the forested foothills of the Uetliberg moun­tain, while front-fac­ing rooms en­joy panoramic views across the city of Zurich. A break­fast buf­fet, al­co­hol-free mini­bar, wifi, Dipiu Spa body care prod­ucts, daily news­pa­per and Nespresso cof­fee ma­chine are in­cluded in the room rates.

En­try-level Clas­sic rooms mea­sure 30-34 sqm. The ma­jor­ity of the Gen­er­ous rooms (34-38 sqm) have glass-fronted bal­conies with cush­ioned seat­ing, as do Luxe rooms (37-41 sqm). Ju­nior suites (44 sqm) in­clude a liv­ing/study/dress­ing area, with a sofa and cof­fee ta­ble, and desk with USB points and in­ter­na­tional power sock­ets.

FOOD AND DRINK The ho­tel has a Miche­lin-starred restau­rant called Ecco open for din­ner Wed­nes­day to Sun­day, and for Sun­day lunches. This fine din­ing venue also has a pri­vate din­ing room. The main restau­rant, called Hide & Seek, is where break­fast is served – and is a large, glass-fronted space with panoramic views over­look­ing the city of Zurich. The cen­tre­piece of the stylish bar is a wall made of brass safety-de­posit boxes, a nod to Zurich’s fi­nan­cial his­tory. In sum­mer the Ocean Bar serves lunch by the pool.

MEET­INGS There are three main meet­ing rooms: Tide, a board­room-style space (ac­com­mo­dat­ing eight to 22 peo­ple) that can be di­vided into two; Drift, a meet­ing and ban­quet­ing room for up to 40 peo­ple; and Wave, the main event hall hold­ing up 200 peo­ple, with a large ter­race area of­fer­ing great views.

LEISURE There is a 25-me­tre out­door pool, flanked on one side by large flat rocks for sun­bathing. The in­door pool in the spa is per­fect for bad weather days. There is a small gym in the base­ment, but a bet­ter op­tion is to take your ex­er­cise out­doors. Paths be­hind the ho­tel lead to trails that criss-cross the moun­tain slopes, pop­u­lar with run­ners, Nordic walk­ers and moun­tain bik­ers (bikes can be bor­rowed for free from re­cep­tion). The spa would not be out of place in a well­ness re­sort, with an Ayurvedic treat­ment menu and Aveda mas­sages. You can book one-on-one per­sonal train­ing, plus Pi­lates and yoga ses­sions.

VER­DICT A good choice if you want to com­bine busi­ness in Zurich with some qual­ity down­time. Tom Ot­ley

Paths be­hind the ho­tel lead to trails that criss-cross the moun­tain slopes

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