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TEL: +41 33 744 97 00 TEL: +41 33 744 74 80

W W W. G R A F F D I A M O N D S . C O M


January 24, 2014 - Issue 1 – CHF 3.50 excl VAT

Elevation 1049

Olympia Scarry & Neville Wakefield

Italian Stallions Arabian Nights

Knowledge is Powder Valentine’s Day

Hôtellerie’s Hospitable Staff

Saanenland’s Ski Instructors

Hotel Christiania’s Unique History


Gifts From $ to $$$$








K L E I N E S L A N D H A U S , D O R F S T R A S S E   , C H -     S A A N E N / G S TA A D P H O N E +   ( )         , G A L L E R Y@ U R S V O N U N G E R . C O M , W W W. U R S V O N U N G E R . C O M

Photo: © ARochau - Fotolia.com

Letter from the Editor

Ski Bunnies & Other Mythical Creatures The snow has arrived again after a long pause. Just in time for me to don a new pair of skis and try to not break both my legs. Readers, be warned – if you see me on the slopes, avoid me like the plague. I Came, I Saw, I Skied I’ve skied once every five years for the past 35 years. Which makes me a permanent beginner rather than a ski bunny – and a great annoyance to many a friend stuck ‘babysitting’ me on the green slopes. I can barely manage to walk in 3-inch heels, so the idea of strapping two smooth pieces of wood (what are skies made out of these days anyway?) to my feet and descending a mountain is absolutely frightening. There is nothing more demotivating than watching a herd of fouryear olds cruise past me at breakneck speeds. But for someone whose idea of a big thrill is a book and a bubble bath, my pathetic km per hour ratio is justified. After all, Gstaad’s slogan is “Come up, Slow down”! Special thanks to the kind souls who found my poles and skis and delivered them to me after I slid down half of the Horneggli on my back, and to the chairlift operator who saved me from being trampled after a nasty fall in the turnstiles. Next time, I’ll be wise enough to enlist the help of one of the region’s many fabulous ski


instructors. This issue takes a look at several local ski schools and what it takes to make a good ski instructor. Languages, regional knowledge and expert sportsmanship are just a few of the talents needed to succeed in this challenging career. Dogs and Tigers and Bären, Oh My Our Local News section opens with a short article on the newly re-opened Bären Gsteig Hotel & Restaurant. Charming young couple Anne-Sophie Jaggi and Lukas Gasser have brought the old “bear” back to life with a surprisingly warm and modern atmosphere. They say dogs are man’s best friend and Last Word columnist M. Theodoracopulos agrees. Her look into platonic relationships may make you examine how many of those Facebook friends truly deserve that title – and how many should be swapped out for the more reliable canine variety. Speaking of friends, visit our Gstaad Gift Guide if that special someone expects an exquisitely wrapped box on Valentine’s Day. With gifts in several price ranges, you’ll find fresh ideas for the man or woman you think has it all – including you!

Love, Art and Hospitality A love of the Saanenland has kept the Scarry family here for three generations. Now artist Olympia Scarry and partner Neville Wakefield have brought a love of their own to the region – contemporary art. As curators of the new exhibition Elevation 1049, they have attracted the best contemporary Swiss artists to create spectacular works in and around our beautiful white winter landscape. In celebration of Valentine’s Day, we’re honouring the local couple whose love bloomed at work – and whose work bloomed at Hotel Christiania. Known for its unique blend of Swiss hospitality and Middle Eastern flavour, the popular hotel and restaurant reflects the good taste and great stewardship of this multicultural couple. Not to mention our hats are off to any dynamic duo who can work and live together in such harmony. Happy Valentine’s Day to Nagy Geadah and Isabelle Geadah-Nopper – and to everyone in the Saanenland! You’ve stolen my heart. Now if only I could ski….

Best regards, Alexis Munier – Editor in Chief

at www.gstaadlife.com

Twitter: @GSTAADLIFE · Facebook: Gstaad Life · Youtube: GstaadLife GSTAADLIFE, Anzeiger von Saanen, Kirchstrasse 7, P.O. Box 201, 3780 Gstaad, Phone: 033 748 88 74, Fax: 033 748 88 84, info@gstaadlife.ch, www.gstaadlife.com, www.gstaadlife.ch Management Board: Frank Müller Publisher: Frank Müller, frank.mueller@gstaadlife.ch Editor in Chief: Alexis Munier Contributors: Mandolyna Theodoracopulos, Januaria Piromallo Layout: Arlette Bütschi Printing: Müller Marketing & Druck AG, Gstaad Advertising: Peter Kuntze-Schneider, peter.kuntze@gstaadlife.ch, Phone: 033 744 46 64 Subscriptions: Flurina Mutzner, flurina.mutzner@mdruck.ch, Phone: 033 748 88 74


Special Advertising Section

Irène Schoenholzer: Art Dealer Extraordinaire Few are as home in the world of art as Irène Schoenholzer. Best known in the Saanenland as the founder of the Lovers of Fine Art in Gstaad gallery, Schoenholzer is now setting her sights on a new challenge: Private art dealer. At a gallery, artwork is sold to interested buyers who visit the exhibitions. Without a fixed gallery, Schoenholzer has taken this “matchmaking” one step further; as an independent art dealer, she personalises an artwork selection for each client, using her extended network to pair the most exquisite pieces with wealthy buyers around the world. “The art market, the buyers and I have evolved over the last few years,” says Irène Schoenholzer with a winning smile on her face as enters her new Zurich office.

Globalisation has also left its mark on the art market – only a few selected works of museum quality can be acquired today, creating a higher demand than supply. It takes an art dealer with exclusive international connections to access these treasures, the likes of which are few and far between. Enter Irène Schoenholzer – with her many years of active service in the art community, she is one of just a handful of dealers who boasts the necessary Rolodex. With her sophisticated expertise and network of relationships, Schoenholzer has works by Alberto Giacometti to Francis Bacon, from Pablo Picasso to Vincent van Gogh, to mention just a few names from the broad spectrum of art, at her fingertips. Now Schoenholzer receives her demanding clientele in total discretion, mainly at her new business premises in Zurich. “Today’s buyer of high quality art puts increasing emphasis on anonymity,” she states.

From the Gallery to the Globe Schoenholzer has been helping celebrities, politicians, artists and business people build their art collections since her days at the gallery in the Saanenland. For 15 years, Lovers of Fine Art in Gstaad was the gathering place for aficionados of both classical and contemporary works. The exhibitions Schoenholzer arranged were sought-after events that attracted high profile art connoisseurs to Gstaad. But preparing every last detail of these exhibitions demanded enormous personal time and devotion. “However, ultimately I lacked the time to my true passion, the global art market,” says Irene Schoenholzer. Leaving Gstaad and choosing Zurich as a home base was a natural step in Schoenholzer’s personal and professional evolution. However. she still maintains strong

connections to the Saanenland, even meeting customers for the season on request in Gstaad. “Without the gallery I have greater independence in my planning. With my new freedom, can customise a quality work-life balance,” says the 55-year old.

Sweet Memories in the Saanenland The echo of Schoenholzer’s last major exhibition can still be heard in Gstaad. Irène Schoenholzer succeeded – in partnership with Karl -Friedrich Scheufele, Co-President of Chopard – to bring the world-renowned Swiss star photographer Michel Comte to Gstaad. Here he was inspired to complete the unique project “Berner Alpen um Gstaad”. Ms Schoenholzer sold a large number of these stunning images to worldwide art collections and museums. The photos remain hugely popular, with Gault Millau Switzerland’s “Hotel of the Year 2013” The Alpina Gstaad acquiring a selection to decorate their gourmet restaurant and junior suites. The spectacular landscape interpretations are expected in the next year at the Kunstmuseum Bern, where they will be made available to a wide audience. This exhibition features old friends Irène Schönholzer, Karl-Friedrich Scheufele and Chopard, who have come together for a common artistic mission. “After the crisis years of the banks and low interest rates in the Euro zone, high-quality art was sold at record levels. Art is considered a profitable investment, and one that provides significantly more pleasure than any stocks or bonds,” says Schoenholzer. And afterall, Ms Schoenholzer’s role as art dealer brings pleasure into the lives of her clientele, as well as her own. “The daily administration of running a gallery devoured most of my time,” she says. “I can now spend real time with each customer, discovering his or her desires, and searching for the perfect work of art to fill that special place in their homes.” Adapted by Céline Bovier from the paid advertorial by Isabella Greifenstein, Anzeiger von Saanen, December 17th, 2013.


GSTAADLIFE Letter from the Editor


7 3

Local News Gstaad Winter Games


Bären Gsteig Hotel & Restaurant


Headlights Mandatory Day and Night


Profile Elevation 1049 – Olympia Scarry & Neville Wakefield


12 Sports & Leisure Ski Instructors in the Saanenland


Lifestyle Italians Do it Better


Photo Highlights – Gstaad Palace Centenary Cocktail


A Day in the Life of Chimney Sweep Samantha Trummer


Business Hotel Christiania’s Middle-Eastern Flair


Entertainment Events Calendar



Last Word M. Theodoracopulos – The Popularity of Dogs


Cover Photo: © Tom Haller





handmade gifts



Kirchstrasse 7

Tue – Fri 2–6pm Sat 10am – 4pm 3780 Gstaad T 033 744 89 66 atelier@mdruck.ch

Photo: Michael Föhn

Local News

New Zealander Jossi Wells won the men’s division Slopestyle World Cup by a narrow 0.2 point lead, while German Lisa Zimmermann beat out local favourite Eveline Bhend.

Gstaad Winter Games

Newly Adopted Bären Gsteig Hotel & Restaurant



The first annual Gstaad Winter Games were held January 14th-18th, 2014. Approximately 6,000 specatators attended the Games, which were comprised of these four pillars: International Ski Federation (FIS) Slopestyle World Cup; freestyle show; Freeride Film Festival; and various concerts.

The legendary Hotel Bären, newly baptised Bären Gsteig Hotel & Restaurant, reopened this winter after a closure of several months.


As of January 1st, 2014, drivers in Switzerland must use their headlights or daytime running lights at all times. Previously, drivers needed to switch their lights on in tunnels and at night only. Refusal to adhere to the new measure will mean a 40-franc fine. Better visibility is expected to result in fewer accidents, according to Touring Club Schweiz. The European Commission has now mandated that all new cars be fitted with daytime running lights, which are less powerful than traditional headlights. Cars older than 1970 will be exempt, as well as traditional and electric bicycles, mopeds and scooters, and tractors or other agricultural vehicles. The move will up fuel expenditure slightly, increasing costs by approximately two percent. Similar laws are already in place in Scandinavia and Iceland, but Switzerland is the first continental European nation to mandate such a measure.

Its rich history began in 1756, when the classic wooden chalet-style hotel was built. Soon afterward, it became the rustic lodge of choice for Switzerland’s first ski tourists, who hailed mostly from England. Since its humble beginnings, the Hotel Bären has been appreciated for its hearty local cuisine,

“Whenever possible, we use local products from our suppliers,” assures Anne-Sophie Jaggi. “A speciality is our hand-cut locally raised steak tartare, a true insider’s tip.” The atmosphere remains warm and cosy, yet the young couple, ever smiling, has added a touch of their modern flair. Hipsters and farmers mingle in equal parts at the bar, proving the Bären, like the snow on the surrounding mountaintops, is pretty cool indeed. www.baerengsteig.ch

Photos: Anne-Sophie Jaggi

Headlights Mandatory

The hotel, whose future was uncertain after the Gstaad Palace ceased operations there last August, now has new management. Lukas Gasser and Anne-Sophie Jaggi are the bubbly young pair who are determined to give new life to the old “bear”.

featuring cheese dishes like fondue and raclette. Jaggi and Gasser have kept the menu quite traditional, with the addition of several forgotten favourites like pot-au-feu and meatloaf which have fallen by the wayside in most restaurants.




Haus mit Raketen, 1981 by Roman Signer. Photo by Emil Grubenmann, Courtesy of Hauser & Wirth, © Roman Signer

Bringing The Art Of Snow And Stone To Life An Interview with the Curators of Elevation 1049 INTERVIEW BY: ALEXIS MUNIER PHOTOS BY: TOM HALLER

The natural beauty of the Saanenland in winter is the inspiration of the exciting exhibition Elevation 1049. The brainchild of Olympia Scarry and Neville Wakefield, Elevation

1049 features the work of Swiss artists, set against their beautiful native Alpine landscape and created in materials inspired by nature – including snow and stone. Curated by Neville and Olympia and produced by the LUMA& Foundation, Elevation 1049 is the first in a series of site-specific exhibitions.

GSTAADLIFE sat down with the couple to discuss the exhibition and their lives as artists. Note: Elevation 1049 will be on view from January 27th through March 8th, 2014 and will be free and open to the public. www.elevation1049.org


GSTAADLIFE: Olympia, you’re described as a Swiss artist but have spent most of your life living elsewhere. Tell us about your upbringing and what it feels like to come home to Switzerland, and to Gstaad in particular. Olympia Scarry: I feel that I’ve led a nomadic existence thus far. My parents, I could say, were in constant search of beauty, which led us to travel and then settle temporarily. We moved like nomads from one landscape to another – in constant migration between the Adriatic and Atlantic coasts. In turn, over the course of my life, I never developed deep roots in any one mainland. I therefore chose a neutral place to call home, a place in which I never really lived. I think this influenced my interest in gathering a focused vision of artists from one land of origin. I’m excited about inviting a new wave of interesting minds to the region.

GL: You come from a long line of artists, starting with grandfather and famed children’s book illustrator Richard Scarry. Why did you choose to pursue a career as an artist? Are there any similar qualities that can be found in the work of the three Scarry generations? OS: I think art is very much about telling stories; stories about the world we live in, and about experiences we variously survive, in turn leaving a marking or record of a spe-

cific time and place. My grandfather did so by recording through his drawings and writings the goings-on around him in children’s books such as Busy Busy Town and What Do People do All Day? and diaries from other regions. In the same way, my father continues to do so today through the books he authors, as well as with his own paintings and diaries from other lands such as Diaro Veneziano and Diaro Toscano. I do something similar with sculpture and installation, though the biographical content comes as much through psychology and material as through observation.

GL: Neville, is this the first time you’ve worked with Olympia? How exactly did the two of you meet? Neville Wakefield: We’ve never collaborated in this way before though I have gone against the grain of impartiality and included Olympia’s work in a couple of shows, testament perhaps to a longstanding belief that there is no interest without conflict of interest. One such show, titled ‘Involuntary’ was about the idea that most of our interactions with the world are governed by restraint and decorum - the subject of a great deal of art - while those that fall outside the borders of control tend to get neglected. Olympia’s response was to create a self-por-

trait, filmed in glacial slow motion, of her own yawn. The fact that she so clearly found it all a bore was instantly endearing. It confirmed everything that I’d felt before, when we met in Venice in 2009 where she had an installation. There, I was instantly attracted to both her and the work and I ended up having long conversations about both.

GL: How does Gstaad compare to your hometown, Neville? NW: I grew up in a very small community of less than two thousand people on a secluded offshore island. In some ways it’s probably a bit like Gstaad in that everyone knows everyone else’s business. And even though the English could certainly learn a thing or two from the Swiss in terms of discretion, it was, and still is, a very private place governed as much by the elements as by the people who live there.

GL: The role of curator is a curious one, often misunderstood. What does your job involve and what motivates you? NW: My background is in philosophy and writing and the kind of curating that I’m interested in draws on both. It’s a delicate Continued on page 10 >



Profile balance because while you hope the end result will articulate a position – in this instance the matrix of relationships between artwork, art, artists and place – the last thing you want as a curator is to be using art to illustrate a thesis. For me, it’s more about creating a platform from which artists can launch their own vision. There’s an underlying structure and thought but it’s the artists who create the narrative that ultimately describes the show. Curating, for me is writing with other means – it’s meant to lead you to unexpected places and results. It should be unpredictable, otherwise it’s just decoration.

GL: How did the idea for Elevation 1049 come about? NW: We wanted to do a show in Gstaad that could in some ways celebrate the history and natural beauty of the place without imposing too much upon it. Michaela and Simon de Pury introduced us to Tracey and Maurice A. Amon and Maja Hoffmann in Venice in 2011. A number of people with close ties both to Gstaad and contemporary art – Dominique Levy, and Almine and Bernard Ruiz Picasso, later joined by Theresa Sackler and Camilla Al-Fayed, formed an Honorary Board. But the project couldn’t have happened without the support of the LUMA& Foundation’s team, which has produced the show; not to mention the relentless energy and enthusiasm of Maja herself, the Advisory Board, patron, friends and many local partners such as Gstaad-Saanenland Tourism and the Municipality of Saanen. GL: Why Gstaad as the location for Elevation 1049? NW: There were many reasons why Gstaad, all of which start with Olympia’s very close family ties. As the third generation Scarry to live here, she wanted to bring some of the energy of her interests to Gstaad in the same way that her grandparents did in the sixties when the village became the backdrop for the eccentric escapades of the children’s stories we all grew up on. But it’s also an iconic place with a rich social history, an abundance of natural beauty and a few secrets of its own. Those things are inspiration for artists and the natural nutrient for art.

GL: What is your vision of Elevation 1049, and why the subtitle ‘Between Heaven and Hell’?

NW: Having become an international currency, it has become increasingly hard to tell whether the art you are looking at is in New York, London, Berlin, Dubai or Shanghai. The idea behind Elevation1049 was to create a type of installation that spoke to the specifics of place – a show that functioned as an antidote to the white-walled hegemony of art-fair circuit. Nearly all of the works in the show grew out of a particular context and are situated outside in nature. Some will melt, others will disappear but they all, in one way or another, speak to mankind’s relationship to terrain – to the ground beneath our feet and the sky above. What we see below and above us is the Heaven and Hell of the subtitle. In his most famous song, Roger Waters of Pink Floyd - who spend time in Gstaad - wrote the lyrics, “So you think you can tell Heaven from hell, blue skies from pain”. The song was “Wish you were Here”. GL: Tell us about the artists who will be showcasing work at the exhibition. Are they the “Who’s Who” of contemporary Swiss work or up-and-coming young artists? NW: When you invite artists to participate in a show you don’t necessarily know who is going to be inspired. What’s amazing about this project was that almost without exception all the artists we approached agreed to participate. As a result we ended up with an incredibly strong representation of artists, many of whom have really played a key role in shaping Swiss art of the last few decades. But, alongside the veterans there are also many younger and emerging artists like Beni Hegglin (here collaborating with Tina Braegger) who at the age of 25 is the youngest and just beginning to show his work.

GL: Olympia, can you tell us about your installation? OS: I will be presenting a minimal installation of a home that will never be built, that eventually will collapse and disappear. It’s equally a dream home that never comes to fruition and the dream of a home. It exists as a skeleton to be fleshed out in the mind. Constructed on unstable ground, I invite the earth to rebel against it and with it all the mindless damage that construction imposes on the world. The title – All that is Solid Melts into Air – to me suggests that all mankind’s endeavors are forever in conflict with nature. And so we are left always on the outside looking in.

Gstaad is an iconic place with a rich social history, an abundance of natural beauty and a few secrets of its own. NEVILLE WAKEFIELD

GL: What can Elevation 1049 bring to Gstaad, a village known mostly for its glitz and glamour? NW: Gstaad may be known mostly for its glitz and glamour but perhaps interestingly, that aspect was not what most of the artists were drawn to. Christian Marclay, for instance, chose to look at how the Saanenland has been seen through the lens of another culture – in this instance Bollywood films. Other artists such a Thomas Hirschhorn or Claudia Comte have chosen to create works with snow and ice as it is used in everyday ways around farms and on the ice rink. What we hope Elevation 1049 brings to Gstaad is another perception that perhaps goes beyond the stereotype – one in which glitz and glamour can be seen as just one surface facet of a much richer and more varied totality.

GL: Do you have any estimate of the number of visitors expected to attend? NW: We don’t have an estimate for the number of visitors expected to attend though with an exhibition that is intentionally decentered and in a place that is not easy to access there’s a certain threshold of commitment that people have to pass in order to see it. That said, it’s been very important to us that the show is free to the public and that it is as accessible for local people as it is for art-world globetrotters and their attendant Sherpas. And for those who would rather let their fingers do the walking there’s always the website: www.elevation1049.org

GL: Olympia, will you pass on a love on the Saanenland to future generations of the Scarry family? OS: I do hope so!


St. Valentine’s Day Gstaad Gift Guide BY: GSTAADLIFE

Strolz Ski Boots for Men or Women

While it’s not a Swiss tradition, many couples choose to mark February 14th with the custom of gift-giving. Not sure what to buy your beloved? Here are some ideas from $ to $$$$, which may or may not break the bank.

Bespoke boots from this Austrian legend increase comfort and performance and sport classic, retro stylings. 1190 CHF at Vertex Sports, Gstaad

Pink Sequined Ugg Boots A pair of “Short Sparkle” boots will keep those tootsies nice and fashionably warm. 250 CHF at Schuhhaus Romang, Gstaad

Diamond & Emerald Heart Drop Earrings For the lady who has everything – a pair of hearts will remind her she alone has yours. Price upon request at Graff Diamonds, Grand Hotel Park and The Alpina Gstaad

Limited Edition Swiss Army Knife This Victorinox honours former CEO Carl Elsener with his favourite model, replete with a Damast steel blade. 160 CHF at Fuhrer Cigares-Tobacco, Gstaad

Pure Malt Japanese Whiskey

© Pierre Khim-Tit Art Photo Gstaad

For newbies, try the Single Malt “Yoichi”. For collectors, only 120 bottles of the 25 year Pure Malt Nikka are available in Europe. 89 & 1130 CHF at Le Caveau de Bacchus, Gstaad

Boudoir Photo Shoot Elegant, sexy art photos in a custom session. Gentlemen, you’ll buy it for her, but it’s really a gift for you. From 1,200 CHF at Art Photo Gstaad


Photos: zVg


The Making of a Good Ski Instructor BY: ALEXIS MUNIER

The only thing harder than learning to ski is finding a good ski instructor to teach you how. In Gstaad, where skiing is a way of life – not to mention livelihood – good ski instructors are as critical to local pride as they are the local economy. So forget the Hollywood stereotype of the tanned and good-looking playboy ski instructor known for his expertise on and off the slopes. In real life, the best ski instructors in the Saanenland are smart, multilingual athletes whose teaching skills are as wellhoned as their schussing skills. Setting a High Bar...in Spanish Many young skiers may dream of becoming instructors, however the race to the finish leaves most dreamers behind. In 2001, the Swiss government raised the bar, requiring that all ski instructors pass a series of exams in order to obtain the license the needed to teach here in Switzerland. There are other prerequisites as well. As with most hospitality and/or tourism positions in Switzerland, candidates must speak English, French and German at a minimum. Here, in

Gstaad, the increase in international tourists has defined the needs of the ski schools as well. “The ability to speak Spanish would be great asset,” says Jan Brand of Gstaadsnowsports, Gstaad. “Russian would also be an advantage, although many Russians are able to communicate in English. In our school we currently have three teachers who speak the language.” “Knowledge of Russian would be a real asset,” agrees Marc Rüdisühli of Skischule Alpinzentrum Gstaad, Saanenmöser, “but finding instructors with these skills is difficult.” The Hometown Advantage Local knowledge is important, which is one of the reasons those raised in the Saanenland represent a majority of the instructors. Some foreign workers do come to work the winter season; however, their numbers remain minimal. Important skills like good knowledge of the weather and snow conditions are vital, especially for guided trips off-piste, where the risk of avalanche is especially high this season. The instructors must not only be

expert skiers, but well-rounded snow sportsmen. “The guests expect a polyvalent instructor,” states Nicole Haldi, a Gstaad-based private instructor. “He or she must be able to lead a snowshoe tour, beginner’s downhill trip for children, or even a challenging heli-skiing adventure.” While good looks aren’t a requirement, looking the part certainly is. “An instructor is 50% expertise and 50% personality,” says David Schmid of Pure Snowboarding, Gstaad. “Clients expect snowboarding instructors, especially, to look authentic, not like an actor playing a role.” Sizing Up a Client Knowing how to teach whom is another key aspect of ski instruction. David Schmid divides guests into three basic categories: 1. Locals who want to spend a lesson at a fixed time to learn something specific, like snowboarding or raising the level of their downhill skiing abilities; 2. Tourists or locals who want to achieve the highest amount of progress humane-

Sports & Leisure ly possible in a short amount of intense training. 3. Prominent individuals who wish a completely customised program tailored to their specific needs and desires. “Young instructors from the Saanenland have a certain advantage,” says Marc Rüdisühli. “They come across as authentic, which the customer really appreciates.” For some schools like Snowsports Saanenland, the willingness to share in different types of lessons in important as well. “We require all our instructors to perform two weekly children’s courses,” says Johny Wyssmüller, Snowsports Saanenland, Schönried. Marc Rüdisühli on the other hand, recognises the fact that a high skill level of the sport itself does not necessarily make a good teacher, especially for certain customers. “If a customer brings in his three-year old child, for example,” clarifies Marc Rüdisühli, “It makes little sense to put a high-level instructor on the job, but rather someone of a lower level of training who works well with children.” “Above all, an instructor must enjoy his work,” says Jan Brand. “Guests notice immediately if someone is truly enthused or if he’s just going about earning his daily bread.” Have Car, Will Ski There are some things candidates can do to boost their chances of employment as well. Having a vehicle at their disposition means they can pick up customers and drive to different locations. The more flexible the better, as working hours are rarely set in stone and cancellations last-minute are commonplace. Instructors may spend several full days working and then have no customers for another several days, depending what that week holds. More and more often, skiers only want to take a lesson in perfect conditions. If the temperature is too cold, the sun isn’t out, or the snow less than powder perfect, students are apt to cancel. When the Snow Melts.... The winter only lasts so long, and it’s clear that ski instructors must find other work during the rest of the year.

“I do have a few ski instructors who spend the summer months teaching in New Zealand,” says Marc Rüdisühli, “but this is quite rare.” For most of the instructors, warm weather means finding another job. Summer often sees the instructors working as tour guides, loggers, construction workers and lifeguards in order to make ends meet. However, they have the off-season to travel, spend time with their families and recover from months of intensive work. But summers aside, being a ski instructor can make every winter a pleasure.

Ski Schools in the Saanenland Jan Brand Gstaadsnowsports, Gstaad www.gstaadsnowsports.ch David Schmid Pure Snowboarding, Gstaad www.pure-snowboard.ch Marc Rüdisühli Skischule Alpinzentrum Gstaad, Saanenmöser www.alpinzentrum-snowsports.ch

“The good thing about being a ski instructor is that you can do the job for a lifetime,” says Jan Brand.

Johny Wyssmüller

“Sure, it can be something of a showman’s job,” chuckles Marc Rüdisühli, “but the teamwork and spending days in the great outdoors has its charm as well.”

Private Ski Instructors

Snowsports Saanenland, Schönried www.snow-sports.ch

Gstaad-Saanenland www.privatskilehrergstaad.ch




Massimo Nava


There’s a saying in Gstaad: Italians do it better. Anyone who has spent any time at all in the region knows the best of the best in hôtellerie is in Italian hands. As every hotel boasts a fair amount of staff who hail from ”the boot”, we are happy to mention just a few of the long-serving Italians who are responsible for making Gstaad the place it is today.

Gildo Romagnolo

The Granddaddy is Gianni Biggi, a Neapolitan who arrived fresh faced and freshly diploma-ed in Gstaad at the age of 23. Biggi started at the bottom, as maincourantier at the Palace, eventually working his way up to senior management. He first had the pleasure of directing and co-owning the Hotel Olden, then the Grand Hotel Park engaged him for its Board of Directors, where he still sits today. Never one to rest on his laurels, Biggi has recently taken a position as Co-Managing Director of the five-star Le Royal in

Gianni Biggi

Crans-Montana, which is due to open shortly. Biggi’s elegant appearance and exquisite manners make him a connoisseur of ways and worlds, even those which are diametrically opposed. In fact, as a trained reiki master, Biggi speaks of yin and yang and how to channel positive energies. Another treasure is Gildo Romagnolo, the gourmet voice of the Palace for 40 years. The Bistro at the hotel, a meeting place of the international jet set, is even named in his honour. Gildo is intimately acquainted with the guests – their likes and dislikes – and caters to them with specialities like slivers of white truffle of Alba on freshly made tagliolini. And if Gildo is the patriarch of the Palace family, then the other waiters are his beloved and adopted children. His “eldest” is Domenico, nicknamed Mimi. This immigrant from Ischia has worked the cloakroom for decades; he knows that furs, like diamonds, are a girl’s best friend. Tonino Pirina, from Sardegna, is the most powerful doorman in the Saanenland. He alone decides who will enter into the famous Greengo nightclub. At just a glance he can guess the correct age of the teenage


Mario Salluzzi

boys who wish to enter. “They all say they are 21, even if they are only 15!” he says. Pirina, who has the attentive eye of Sherlock Holmes, learned to distinguish false identity cards with record speed. Once inside the club, Romano Santin, from Pordenone, decides the strategic location of each of the tables. As in heaven (according to Dante’s La Divina Commedia, The Divine Comedy) the closer one gets to the DJ, the higher level of success he has achieved in paradise. Tender is the night for Andrea Gambardella of Amalfi, the Palace’s tireless night porter for at least three decades. His trademark upturned black moustache assures he is never missed. Gambardella has a reputation of filling any and all requests at any hour of the night. He spends the off-season in Paris with his lovely French wife. Luciano Ferrigolo, from Abano Terme, is the heart and soul of the Grand Hotel Park. He arrived as a young waiter, work-

Luciano Ferrigolo

Paulo Quattrocchi and Giuseppe Colella

ing his way up to concierge. Although he’s officially at retirement age, Ferrigolo shows no signs of stopping anytime soon. And what would the Park be without him? Like the peak of Wispile without its mountain firs. The hotel’s most loyal clientele puts itself directly in his hands. The secret of a good concierge? “Knowing how to keep a secret as a priest would,” Ferrigolo smiles. The Park’s other veteran concierge is Paolo Delvai, from Trento. In his spare time he likes to restore old homes. More Italian is spoken at the bar with Paolo Quattrocchi, from Padova, who pours a mean Bellini. La bella lingua continues straight into the kitchen, where award-winning Chef Giuseppe Colella from Ischia prepares the stuff culinary dreams are made of. His scialatielli with seafood is a wonder, and wonderfully known in the region. Working round-the-clock in season might be strenuous, but then again there are advantages. In the off-season, staff has the time to cultivate their hobbies. Gennaro Carrozza, from Naples, has worked for the “Golden Triangle” (Gstaad Palace, Eagle Club and Grand Hotel Park), and from next season on he will be the Maître D’Hôtel at The Alpina Gstaad. During his free time, Carozza is an expert underwater diving instructor. He accompanies his customers from Gstaad to Naples to visit the Roman port, mosaics and statues of the Nymphaeum, which is practically an underwater Pompeii. His friend Franco Paloschi, hails from Sardinia. He will, after a quarter-century as Maître D’Hôtel at the Palace, move on to The Alpina Gstaad.

Next there’s Massimo Nava, pillar of the Hotel Olden. He adores picking mushrooms, and it’s no surprise his polenta with porcini is a hit with Italian guests. Nava has two distinct styles of shaking cocktails, which he will happily perform for guests upon request. Don’t see anything on the bar menu which inspires? Nava can take one look at a guest, ask a few simple questions, and create a fanciful bespoke drink to whet any whistle. Also at home here is Mario Salluzzi, the Olden’s chansonnier who has sung “O Sole Mio” for the many celebrities passing through Gstaad, including Roger Moore and Elizabeth Taylor. Last but not least, we salute entrepreneurial partners Emidio Medda and Fabrizio Contu. After two decades at the Grand Hotel Park, they opened their cosy trattoria, Le Braconnier, in Rougemont. As this sampling reveals, when it comes to service, no one beats the Italians. As they say in Italy, “Grazie, prego, ritornerò!“

Paulo Delvai


Special Advertising Section

Raising the Bar for Education in Gstaad Bespoke private tutoring for your child’s individual needs Looking to balance mountain living and a busy social schedule, as well as keep abreast of your children’s education in Gstaad? Eager to see your little ones excel in a challenging academic program without stress or worry?

One-to-one tutoring can bring out the greatest potential in any student. With or without special educational needs, bespoke private tuition gives a child what a school class cannot – the undivided attention of a tutor to increase both knowledge and confidence. The holidays can be a perfect opportunity to extend your children’s education, without the stress that school brings. Take 15-year old Cosmo, for example, who’s worried about upcoming exams. He knows he must up his academic game in order to ace these exams. His mother gets in touch with SGA and together, we shortlist a selection of tutors, interview to find the perfect fit and put together a tailored tutoring programme for Cosmo, reducing anxiety and ensuring academic success.



SGA’s wholistic approach provides private tuition that meets individualised educational needs. We work closely to ensure family priorities are met and quality of life is not compromised. A niche tutoring agency, SGA also provides exam preparation, home education, school placements and university admission services in the UK and USA. Do not hesitate to contact our team today to discuss your child’s needs in further detail.

London: +44 (0) 20 7859 5314 Geneva: +41 (0) 22 544 1666 enquiries@sophiegreenassociates.com

Caroline and Eric Freymond are happy to welcome you at Chalet Farb from Sunday to Sunday – February 16th to March 2nd 2014, 3 – 7 pm Kirsten Glasbrook “Kirsten’s hand woven tapestries evoke a dreamworld where civilisation walks side by side with soul. Her colourful patterns spiral in ambiguous landscapes where images and symbols shape unknown horizons. In these hangings, multicolour birds fly around the room, fish stream down inner rivers, and our spirit soars over fiery red mountains. A labyrinth enfolds life’s mysteries and the tree of life connects soil with sky. Kirsten spins vibrant images in a warm and meditative dance of mythological dimension which will delight adult and children alike.” Beside the normal opening hours by appointment: Exhibition Commissioner / Olivier Taverney DIR. SCHÖNRIED

TAPESTRY WEAVING Miguel de Miranda Correa

Kirsten Glasbrook was born in Denmark and trained as a weaver in the workshop of John Becker in Copenhagen. After moving to London in the 1960s, she worked with Karen Finch, restoring antique tapestries. She currently works from her studio in Devon. She exhibits widely and her work is held in numerous private collections both in the UK and abroad.

Chalet Farb PISCINE





Chalet Farb Farbstrasse 20 3792 Saanen Caroline Freymond Tel. 079 456 91 81 info@menusplaisirs.ch www.menusplaisirs.ch Antiqua Menus Plaisirs

POSTHOTEL “Walking through Miguel’s exhibition of photography RÖSSLI TUNNEL opens up windows of colour where movement and textures offer glimpses of inner landscapes. His technical mastery in capturing light with precision and his keen eye for detail offers an allegoric and poetic vision. Clouds dance in the wind, footsteps resonate in empty buildings, cityscapes are vividly stratified and time stops. Unpredictable possibilities, fleeting moments of time, eternalised by a click of his shutter, widens our reading of the world. His keen study of perspectives, parallels and points of view leads to contrasting and mysterious destinations where beauty and meaning reflect a fluid, almost musical depiction of reality. Melodies of sadness and beauty, unattainable heights and clear mornings bring a soft human presence to the wide strokes of everyday life. The observer can find in Miguel’s work a shifting mirror of his own interiority.” Exhibition Commissioner / Olivier Taverney


Miguel de Miranda Correa was born in New York and educated in Switzerland. At the age of 16 he received his first camera and was soon devoting most of his time to photography. By his early twenties he had worked as a professional photographer in Europe and moved to New York where he was an assistant to Hiro and then Richard Avedon.


A Day in the Life of Chimney Sweep Samantha Trummer TEXT & PHOTO BY: JANUARIA PIROMALLO

Samantha Trummer knocks at the door of a house in the Saanenland and asks if she can check the chimney. The lady of the house is happy to see her, as are all her clients. After all, according to tradition, chimney sweeps bring good luck. Like most people, this customer finds herself humming Chim Chim Cheree, from the musical Mary Poppins, while ushering 27-year-old Samanatha into her living room. The lady asks Samantha if she knows Michelle Hunziker, the Swiss television soubrette most famous in Italy. She nods her head and says: Samantha, beautiful as you are, you could have done something more as well! Samantha smiles; she’s used to these kind of comments. She answers: Even though my make up is made out of coal and I wear a not-so-fashionable uniform, people are happy to see me. I remove harmful dust from the the chimney and I make it shine again. And what’s more magical than a roaring fireplace? Is this not a symbol of family unity?

Samantha’s father worked in the Post Office. She has a twin sister who works as secretary. She dreamt of pursuing a career as a nurse but financial circumstances took her life in another direction.

py working for Roland Morgenthaler’s Kaminfeger in Munsingen. Her customers are happy too. Like this satisfied client, who now knows that her chimney is broken and should be fixed to avoid possible injury.

But Samantha doesn’t care. For her, chimney sweep is the best job in the world. She’s hap-

Just another day in the life of the Saanenland’s most charming chimney sweep.


and wine, the evening featured lively music by Farkas and jazz by Veilleurs de Nuit.

Longtime guests and friends celebrated in style at the Palace’s Centenary Cocktail December 27th, 2013. In addition to fine food

If you were at the event and would like to purchase a photograph, please contact www. artphotogstaad.ch.


Photo: © Pierre Khim-Tit

Photo: © Pierre Khim-Tit

Jeweller Franklin Adler and guest.

Thierry and Andrea Scherz celebrate the Gstaad Palace’s 100th birthday.

TV reporter Nelson Monfort and family.

Photo: © Pierre Khim-Tit

See and Be Seen at the Palace’s Party



Special Advertising Section

Welcome Galerie Tatiana Tournemine Tournemine Family Opens Fourth Gallery in Gstaad There’s a new art gallery in town—and the Galerie Tatiana Tournemine is bound to attract discriminating collectors. With works ranging from young, up-and-coming French, Belgian, Italian and Swiss artists to established painters with significant followings, the beautiful gallery in Chalet Apple Pie brings a taste of the Champs-Elysées to Gstaad’s Promenade. With its carefully curated collection of contemporary art on ready display, the gallery beckons passers-by with vivid paintings and sculptures. The Beauty of Venice—and the Female Form Colourful paintings by Mitro span one wall; his scenes of Venice seem to glow in a rare, golden light. Further inside, Daniel Timmers’ large portraits of female faces take on a retro Great Gatsby feel. A love of the female form clearly pervades here, as works by Giovanni Maranghi bring a series of beautiful women to life in textually fascinating mixed medium on wood. But the selections are not just limited to traditional art forms: “Oeuf de lumière”, a wooden lamp designed by the young Swiss-French artist Robin Bayas-Perry, and constructed by Chaletbau Matti, recalls the design of the 1960’s; while 39-year old Genevan artist Alexis Reynaud’s photo series “Skiers”shows us minimalistic scenes of crowds with breathtaking perspectives.

Growing a Life in Art The history behind Galerie Tatiana Tournemine begins with Tatiana Tournemine herself. After becoming a mother to three children, she wasn’t content to spend her time at home while they were at school. Combining her independent nature and knowledge in art history, Ms Tournemine began slowly but surely by opening her own galleries in the French coastal villages of La Baule and Carnac. Over the years, as her passion for art grew, so did her business. By the time she opened sister gallery in Paris – Faubourg Saint-Honoré (next to the Hôtel Bristol), her reputation as an art dealer with a keen eye for up-and-coming artists was firmly established. This love of art was passed down from mother to son, with her youngest, Thomas Tournemine, following in her footsteps. After seven years helping Ms Tournemine in Paris, the 32-year old art lover and his wife Marie took the challenge of opening their first gallery abroad here in the Saanenland. “Gstaad is a magnificent village, and we’ve had such a warm welcome from the local community,” says Thomas Tournemine. “Marie and I are thrilled to start a new adventure here this winter.” The atmosphere that pervades the gallery is one of colour and light. Thomas and Marie are ready with a warm smile and easy manner, welcoming guests to spend a moment enjoying the carefully selected artwork. The Joy of Sculpture Sculpture, an art form highly appreciated by the Swiss, features prominently in Galerie Tatiana Tournemine. From the half-eaten oversized apple to the imposing polar bear, whimsical carved marble fruit by Jean-Pierre Levy and stylized bronze animals by Lucien Ghomri are carefully placed. Alexandra Gestin’s Sumo-inspired sculptures provide more eye candy; these brightly coloured half-na-

ked wrestlers in reds evoke the Orient with a modern twist. Swarms of Ghomri’s bronze butterflies with a hint of colour decorate the comfortable seating area in the rear of the space, where the Tournemines delight in conversing with guests over coffee. Here visitors can also peruse one of the many catalogues and coffee-table books by featured artists. A More Artful Gstaad With the opening of the Galerie Tatiana Tournemine, Gstaad adds another gem to its bejewelled crown. Now, thanks to the new location on the Promenade, art lovers in the Saanenland will be able to buy the best in contemporary art – and indulge in a winter sport of the cultural kind. Please join the Tournemines for their COCKTAIL PARTY February 14th from 5:30 – 8:30 pm.

Chalet Apple Pie, Promenade 4, Gstaad +41 (0)33 744 46 48


Swiss Hospitality with a Middle-Eastern Flavour TEXT BY: GSTAADLIFE

When it comes to hotels in Gstaad, there’s only one that marries the native Swiss tradition with the exotic customs and cuisine of Egypt: the Hotel Christiana. This wonderful coupling of cultures attracts guests and diners from all around the Saanenland – but it almost didn’t happen. Back to the Future Like a bull in a china shop, Nagy Geadah remembers his first moments in the Christiania. “I entered through the crowded restaurant,” says the Egyptian of Lebanese origin, of his 1979 interview, “and quickly made my way to the reception through many long stares.” Liselotte Nopper openly admits she was not sure an Arab would fit into the hotel, but called him for an interview like any other candidate. Geadah dazzled them with his easy ways and polite charm. When the first round of interviews was over, Nopper had to admit that he was the clear choice. Yet while Geadah boasted a diploma from the Hotel School of Glion (in Canton Vaud) it wasn’t easy in those days for an Egyptian to secure a residence permit. However Nopper made some calls to Bern and the paperwork was arranged without a hitch. While fluent in French, Arabic and English, multilingual Geadah had yet to master German. As a receptionist, his first few requests in the local language were difficult to decipher; he relied on the help of his colleague, Ms Nopper’s daughter Isabelle. “He would smile and nod his head,” says Isabelle Nopper, laughing. “But in his defense, he did pick up the language quite quickly.” While she was hesitant to get to know Mr Geadah at first, Isabelle Nopper soon realised they had common friends in Zurich. Not much time passed before the two gave in to their winning chemistry and fell in love. The couple moved to San Francisco to work for a season, and there decided to get married in a civil ceremony. The idea was that once married, it would be easier for Mr Geadah to secure work in Switzerland again. However, the opposite proved true.

The Geadah-Nopper family with matriarch Liselotte Nopper (seated at left).

As was customary at the time, it was actually Isabelle now Geadah-Nopper who lost her Swiss cititzenship upon marrying Mr Geadah, since Egyptian citizenship was automatically given to her and Swiss law forbade double citizenship. So the newlyweds found themselves in a precarious situation, one their youth and inexperience did not prepare them for: Neither one had the legal right to return to Switzerland! But that didn’t stop the Geadahs. Mother Liselotte Nopper pulled some strings in Bern, and they were issued a three-day tourist visa. Once on Swiss soil, they were able to file citizenship applications and explain their situatation to the authorities in greater detail. All this, despite the fact that Isabelle had no desire to return to Gstaad, the small village of her youth. “The last thing I wanted to do was return to Switzerland,” she states. “I wanted to see and travel the world.” A Hotel Is Born The couple decided to settle in Gstaad nonetheless and went into business with Ms Nopper running the Christiania. Thirty-three years later, the entire family still has a hand in the hotel’s operations. While

the 90-year old Ms Nopper retired a decade ago, she still makes frequent visits to lend a helping hand, mostly with the housekeeping so she can remain out of site. The hotel’s kitchen is renown for its delicious Lebanese and Egyptian cuisine, the only restaurant of its kind in the region. Showing her commitment to and love of Arabic culture, it is not Mr Geadah that makes specialties like the typical yogurt sauce, but his wife Isabelle. A talented chef, Ms Geadah-Nopper had, despite her mother’s dispproval, trained at the International Hotel School in Lausanne and later at the Hotel du Rhône in Geneva. Her passion for Middle-Eastern cuisine started at the Christiania, where a guest once asked for a typical meal from that region. Over the years she developed mezzes with modern touches. Since 1991, Lebanese and Egyptian cuisine has been an integral part of the menu. Isabelle and Nagy Geadah-Nopper are parents to Nathalie and Georgette, both of whom work in the hospitality industry, and to son Raphael. When asked if the hotel will continue as a family tradition, Ms Geadah-Nopper insists it’s the choice of her children alone.



Entertainment Events Calendar Friday, January 24, 2014 through Thursday, February 13, 2014

Church Services

For further details please visit: www.gstaad.ch St Peter’s Anglican Church Fri., Jan. 24


Sat., Feb. 1 - Thu., Feb. 6

General Assembly


Vernissage Theres Emmenegger

Village organisation of Lauenen Sat., Jan. 25

Exhibition: Drawings in acrylic, mixing


36th International Hot-Air Balloon Week

technique and wax creations Sat., Feb. 1

International Hot-Air Balloon Festival Sun., Jan. 26


Swiss Folk Music Evening


Swiss folk musik

Rivella Family Contest Sat., Feb. 1

Family-Skirace, www.familycontest.ch



In Swiss-German only

Elevation 1049 Exhibition by Olympia Scarry & Neville Wakefield

Sun., Feb. 2


Finally Concert Wed., Jan. 29


Jodel-Musical Jodel-Musical in Swiss German Thu., Jan. 30

Concert of the new blood wind section Tue., Feb. 4 – Fri., Feb. 7


Skiing by Night @ Rinderberg


FIS Men’s Race Exciting ski races

Skiing by night from the skilift Rinderberg Tue., Feb. 4 Thu., Jan. 30


General Sssembly


Lecture Series SRK


Wed., Feb. 5

Concerts in the churches of Gstaad, Saanen and Rougemont

Giant slalom Fri., Feb. 7 – Sat., Feb 8




Gsteigs 24h-Race 24h Ski race

Paintings by Moshe Rosenthalis at Adler Joailliers

Sat., Feb. 1


Sat., Feb. 8 Gstaad Jodlerclub Concert and Theater In Swiss-German only Sat., Feb. 8 Jütz Concert


Fri., Feb. 7 – Sun., Feb 9


Swiss Championship Curling

BOSV-Leki-JO-Cup Slalom

Mixed doubles tournament

Ski Competition


Authentic Egyptian-Lebanese dishes Family Geadah-Nopper | Christiania | Untergstaadstrasse 26 | 3780 Gstaad Tel. 033 744 51 21 | www.christiania.ch | info@christiania.ch

Fri., Feb. 7 General Assembly Village organisation of Turbach


Gstaad 033 748 77 88 · Feutersoey 033 755 19 51 www.raiffeisen.ch/saanenland

www.allsaints.ch/chateaudoex Contact: cliveatkinson@bluewin.ch

GSTAADLIFE is available in these Hotels **** * GSTAAD PALACE +41 (0)33 748 50 00, info@palace.ch **** * GRAND HOTEL PARK +41 (0)33 748 98 00, info@grandhotelpark.ch

**** * THE ALPINA GSTAAD +41 (0)33 888 98 88, info@thealpinagstaad.ch ***** ERMITAGE WELLNESS & SPA HOTEL +41 (0)33 748 04 30, welcome@ermitage.ch *** * HOTEL ALPENROSE +41 (0)33 748 91 91, info@hotelalpenrose.ch

**** HOTEL LE GRAND CHALET +41 (0)33 748 76 76, hotel@grandchalet.ch **** HOTEL ARC-EN-CIEL +41 (0)33 748 43 43, info@arc-en-ciel.ch **** HOTEL BERNERHOF +41 (0)33 748 88 44, info@bernerhof-gstaad.ch **** HOTEL CHRISTIANIA +41 (0)33 744 51 21, info@christiania.ch

Important Numbers

**** HOTEL GSTAADERHOF: +41 (0)33 748 63 63, info@gstaaderhof.ch

Ambulance 144, Police 117, Fire 118 Medical Emergency 0900 57 67 47 Dental Emergency 033 729 26 26 Dental Care Center 033 744 15 45 Police Station 033 356 84 31 Car Accident 033 744 88 80 Zweisimmen Hospital 033 729 26 26 Château-d’Oex Hospital 026 923 43 43 Veterinarian 033 748 08 58/ 033 744 06 61

**** HOTEL OLDEN +41 (0)33 748 49 50, info@hotelolden.com

Clubs Rotary Club Gstaad-Saanenland Meetings every Monday 12h00 Palace Hotel Gstaad (033 / 748 50 00), President: Rot. Christian Sieber (026 / 924 45 25) Program: Rot. Pascal Rey (026 / 925 10 00) Lions Club Gstaad-Saanenland Meetings each first and third week of the month on Thursdays, either at 12 pm for lunch or at 7 pm for dinner. Meetings in Ermitage, Wellness & Spa-Hotel, Schönried, Tel. 033 748 60 60. For details and program contact Philippe Werren, president, 033 748 84 00, philippe.werren@werrenag.ch, https://gstaad-saanenland.lionsclub.ch

Your confidence is our highest commitment

Service every Sunday, 17.30 pm

*** * GOLFHOTEL LES HAUTS DE GSTAAD +41 (0)33 748 68 68, mail@golfhotel.ch

For additional useful numbers please visit www.gstaadlife.ch/useful-numbers.html 60 years

English-Speaking, Château-d’Oex

**** * LE GRAND BELLEVUE +41 (0)33 748 00 00, info@bellevue-gstaad.ch

Wispile, Gstaad

5. Landi-Cup

Sommets Musicaux de Gstaad

Sat., Feb. 1 – Sun., Feb. 16

Sat., Feb. 8 Zweisimmen Sledding-Cross Hüsliberghubel – Sparenmoos, 402,336 m.

In Swiss-German only

Village organisation of Gsteig Fri., Jan. 31 – Sat., Feb. 8

Fri., Feb. 7 Saanenmöser General Assembly Village organisation of Saanenmöser

Sat., Feb. 8 Popular Entertainment Hotel Alpenland

Jodlerclub Concert and theater Mon., Jan. 27 - Sat., Mar. 8

Fri., Feb. 7 Zweisimmen Events at the Forellensee Various concerts, www.forellensee.ch

Soroptimist International President: Franziska Brändli, Tel. 079 636 13 33 Program: Gabi Thoenen, Tel. 033 748 11 11

**** ROMANTIK HOTEL HORNBERG +41 (0)33 748 66 88, willkommen@hotel-hornberg.ch **** HOTEL STEIGENBERGER +41 (0)33 748 64 64, gstaad@steigenberger.ch ** * HOTEL ALPINE LODGE +41 (0)33 748 41 51, info@alpinelodge.ch ** * HOTEL DES ALPES BY BRUNO KERNEN +41 (0)33 748 04 50, info@desalpes.ch *** HOTEL BELLERIVE +41 (0)33 748 88 33, info@bellerive-gstaad.ch *** HOTEL ALPENLAND +41 (0)33 765 91 34, hotel@alpenland.ch *** HOTEL ALPHORN +41 (0)33 748 45 45, office@gstaad-alphorn.ch *** HOTEL KERNEN +41 (0)33 748 40 20, info@hotel-kernen.ch *** HOTEL LANDHAUS +41 (0)33 748 40 40, info@landhaus-saanen.ch *** HOTEL SAANERHOF +41 (0)33 744 15 15, hotel@saanerhof.ch ** * HOTEL SOLSANA +41 (0)33 748 94 94, info@solsana.ch ** * HOTEL SPITZHORN +41 (0)33 748 41 41, spitzhorn@spitzhorn.ch *** POSTHOTEL RÖSSLI +41 (0)33 748 42 42, info@posthotelroessli.ch *** SAANEWALD LODGE +41 (0)33 744 69 69, info@saanewald-lodge.ch *** SPORTHOTEL VICTORIA +41 (0)33 748 44 22, info@victoria-gstaad.ch ** LE PETIT RELAIS +41 (0)33 744 35 65, info@lepetitrelais.ch HOTEL BÄREN +41 (0)33 755 10 33, welcome@baerengsteig.ch GASTHOF GELTENHORN +41 (0)33 765 30 22, info@gasthof-geltenhorn.ch HOTEL VIKTORIA +41 (0)33 755 10 34, hotel_viktoria@bluewin.ch HOTEL WILDHORN +41 (0)33 765 30 12, info@hotel-wildhorn.ch

Photo: Fotolia

Last Word


Old friends are a part of our being. Like an extra appendage, they are always there. Even when separated by distance or time, they always seem to be “attached”. A true friend is dependable. Unlike with family, a friend’s loyalty is not forced and it is often deeper. Some friendships come and go, but a solid friendship ought to withstand upheavals and disagreements. An indicator of such a friendship is the ease with which it can be fixed. Lifelong friends are hard to get rid of and they’ll keep coming back into our lives no matter how laissez-faire an attitude we might have. Take my best friend Carson, for example. Carson and I were born just a few hours apart in the same hospital. Our mothers knew nothing of each other. By chance we grew up on the same street and went to different schools only a block away from each other. We were 17 years old when we finally did become friends. We made a great pair and had one hell of a good time. Later, when both at college, we stayed in touch for the first few years, but then, as it does, life took us in different directions. We didn’t fall out, we just drifted apart. Carson got married roughly 15 years later and she invited me to her wedding. It was as if no time at all had passed between us. No explanations were necessary. We simply picked up where we left off, and I am happy to say that we have been thick as thieves ever since.

Occasionally a friend can become a “frenemy.” We love to hate them, yet we refuse to get rid of them, constantly battling it out on an egocentric playing field. Vying, competing and ultimately wasting each other’s time. One such friend like this has been my “best friend” since we were seven years old. In fact we have not spent more than a few hours together in over a decade. I guess we don’t much care for each other, and fortunately we don’t live in the same city. But somehow we are such old “friends”, or maybe I should say “acquaintances” but it sounds too formal. We are like family – whether we like it or not, we are stuck with each other! They say you should keep your friends close and your enemies closer, and they’re right. It is easier and more elegant to gently withdraw from a friendship without letting the other person know why. Only amateurs declare their reasons for cutting ties. A harsh truth can risk a friendship. Sometimes we have to be perilously honest about what we feel or what we think. Many people don’t take honesty too well. The more direct and honest a person is, the more friends they stand to lose along the way. But the true friend always comes back. All is forgiven. That is the mark of a bona fide friend. If they go, they were just fair-weather amigos. They’re fun and they bring us into new circles but it’s really more of a fantasy friendship. Many people prefer this sort of arrangement – it’s often easier. The neces-

sary superficiality is more predictable, and we are rarely forced to discuss or confront the more unpleasant aspects of ourselves. I am not convinced that these are friends worth having, but Facebook tells me that I seem to have a lot of them. A great friend is there for us when we’re in trouble, whether we’re physically sick or just love sick, and at all the other important moments in our life. A great friendship is a romance, only a platonic and less complicated one. A friend can teach you to be better and help you to be yourself. We suffer with our friends as they suffer with us. Great friends won’t indulge us, but they will forgive us our weaknesses. Loyal? Devoted? Maybe a little like a favourite pet. Maybe, except that unlike Fido, your chum’s loyalty does not come without question. As Huxley said, “To his dog, every master is Napoleon; hence the constant popularity of dogs.” Did Napoleon have any great friends? Well, he hated cats and Joséphine’s dogs didn’t have the option of honesty. What kind of friend are you and what sort of friends do you like to have? What kind of a friend are you to your dog? I think these are important questions. It’s worth examining… without our friends we are nothing, and without our dogs we are even less.



Senior Living Investment in your future • In the centre of the village, wheelchair accessible • Underground parking, direct access to your home • Lifestyle support services upon request CHÂTEAU-D’OEX – GSTAAD VALLEY – VALLEE DE GSTAAD

***** A 2 km du centre du village de Château-d’Oex et à seulement 12 min. de Gstaad, cette magnifique propriété de haut standing se compose de 5 chambres à coucher avec dressing, de 4 salles de bains, d’un salon TV, d’une magnifique cuisine ouverte sur la salle à manger et le salon et de plusieurs terrasses. Chaque étage possède des accès directs aux balcons. Vue imprenable et panoramique sur les montagnes et la vallée. Garage pour deux voitures.

Price on request/Prix sur demande CF Immobilier Compagnie Foncière SA Rue du Village 40, 1659 Rougemont Tél. +41 (0)26 925 10 00 – Info@cfimmobilier.ch – www.cfimmobilier.ch

For further information please contact us. ‘The Site’, in Saanen 033 744 06 03 office@vgminvest.ch gstaad-saanen-site.ch

nature’s glittering temptation Promenade 55 · Gstaad Phone +41 33 744 11 22 www.villigergstaad.com


Only 2 km from the centre of Chateau d’Oex and 12 min from the Gstaad ski resort, this magnificent luxurious property consists of 5 bedrooms with dressing rooms, 4 bathrooms, a TV lounge, a beautiful kitchen open on the dining room, living room and several terraces. Each floor has direct access to balconies. With stunning panoramic view of the mountains and the valley. Two-car garage.

Special Advertising Section

Grand Hotel Park Welcomes Master Chefs February to Feature Outstanding Cuisine from Around the World In February, Grand Hotel Park will welcome some of the planet’s best chefs. Whether they’re serving the finest in Moroccan, Greek, Thai or Swiss cuisine, the result is sure to be culinary paradise. The famous Mamounia in Marrakech will be represented by Chef Rachid Agouray. This will give Gstaad residents the opportunity to discover his updated traditional recipes created with talent, method and attention to every last detail. The minute Agouray arrives, Grand Hotel Park’s kitchen will be transformed into a flurry of tagines, couscous and spices. Ettore Bottrini’s Etrusco has been awarded “Best restaurant in Greece” and “Best Greek

Cuisine” by Athinorama magazine and the Herculean Chef has won the Greek distinction of “Most Creative Chef” for three years now by the same publication. So be ready for a special journey, during which guests may taste the real potential of traditional Greek cuisine as seen through a contemporary perspective. Authentic, tasty and light cuisine will be the signature of Chef Jumnong Noradee, who will head the kitchen for two evenings. Working in one of the best Thaï restaurants in Geneva

(Hôtel Beau Rivage), she will guarantee some magical moments with her signature sauces – a spicy lemongrass and fresh mint concoction, a delicate blend of lime and chilli, or a subtly rich and earthy green curry. And don’t forget the exceptional Chef Benoît Violier, for one night only. Awarded Gault Millau Chef of the Year in 2013, rated with 3 Michelin stars, he has been trained by master chefs Joël Robuchon, Freddy Girardet and Philippe Rochat. Chef Violier continues the great tradition of classical French cuisine in a modern, but not sparse, interpretation. Cuisine has never before reached this level of perfection. Reservations strongly recommended: +41 33 748 98 00 / info@grandhotelpark.ch

Chef Benoît Violier, Restaurant de l’Hôtel de Ville, Crissier, Switzerland February 11th

Chef Jummong Noradee, Patara at Beau Rivage, Geneva, Switzerland February 12th & 13th

Upcoming Events at the Grand Hotel Park Feb 11th

Cocktail Reception and Fashion Show by FUR Caravan

Feb 11th – 13th Exhibition by Parmigiani Fleurier and Ferrari Art Gallery with Cocktail Reception on Feb 12th Feb 12th – 14th Exhibition L'Orée du Bois Feb 13th th

Rosey Foundation Gala Dinner th

Feb 14 – 16 Exhibition DeLaneau with Cocktail Reception on Feb 14th Feb 16th – 20th Private Sales – Concept Store Geraldina with Cocktail Reception on Feb 17th Chef Ettore Bottrini, Etrusco, Corfu, Greece February 16th & 17th

Chef Rachid Agouray, La Mamounia, Marrakech, Morocco February 19th & 20th

Feb 22nd

Cocktail Reception and Fashion Show by FUR Caravan


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Gstaad Life  

The exclusive monthly publication about the good life in Gstaad

Gstaad Life  

The exclusive monthly publication about the good life in Gstaad

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