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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

August 28, 2015 - Issue 6 – CHF 3.50

CULT OF KAUFMANN

Top Tenor Wows Gstaad Crowds

READY, SET, GO

Race to Renovate the Sportzentrum

HIS FATHER'S SON

Huck Scarry Talks Books, Art & Family


IONS TTER SOLUT E B E R ENERGY A E R E TH HE COST OF T N O G IN V FOR SA

www.werrenag.ch Phone: 033 748 84 00

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GSTAADLIFE // ISSUE 6 // AUGUST 28, 2015

12.2.2009 10:00:20 Uhr


What were the highlights of your summer? Whether we’re talking the great outdoors, sporting events, classical concerts, or even just dinner, there were many to choose from here in the Saanenland.

Photo: Jan Becke – Fotolia

Highlights of the High Life

My summer was blessed with several special experiences. The first of those was the beautiful music that filled my ears here in the Alps. Cult of Kaufmann The two-month long Menuhin Festival Gstaad provided us with a wealth of firstrate music this summer. As a former opera singer, I take particular interest in the vocal music that appears on the region’s stages. In this GSTAADLIFE, I’ve reviewed the highly anticipated concert with Jonas Kaufmann, one of the world’s most beloved tenors. It was a moment of absolute joy for me (and for the other 1,999 people who waited on baited breath for his appearance). If we have any luck at all, Kaufmann’s first performance at the festival won’t be his last. That brings us to a preview of the country superstars set to strut their stuff at Country Night Gstaad. With big names like Patty Loveless and Switzerland’s own Philip Fankhauser coming to town, a weekend-long honky-tonk extravaganza is in store. Don’t worry, you’ve still got two weeks to spit-shine your boots and don your best cowboy clothing before line-dancing the night away. Well-Drawn Boy August featured another special experience for me, an afternoon with Profile interviewee and one of the region’s loveliest residents, the soft-spoken Huck Scarry. The artist and illustrator is the son of famed children’s author Richard Scarry, and the father of four artistic children himself. Huck welcomed the magazine to his chalet for a chat about his family’s legacy and his life’s work. From teaching watercolour to playing the alphorn, this talented Renaissance man brings authentic passion to everything he does. Trading Up? Is the Swiss system of apprenticeship better

than a university education in the UK or USA? Diana Oehrli discusses the merits of learning a trade rather than high-level “book-learning” in her Last Word column. Whether you agree with her or not, it is sure to raise some interesting conversations about intellectual challenge versus practical career preparation. Car & Driver A dedicated reader, Hans Matti, shares with us the story of his lifelong love affair with Bugatti cars. From his early years here in Gstaad to his later purchase of several of the cult-classic automobiles, Matti has made Bugatti a real part of his life. He encourages us to indulge our desires, and take a ride of our own in a favourite car. Another form of transport is in the news this month. The Saanenland’s historic funicular, dubbed the “funi,” is now at the Swiss Museum of Transport in Luzern. With just a few thousand more francs needed in donations, it will soon be ready for complete renovation. After its makeover, the funi will stay on display at the museum as an ambassador for the Saanenaland. If you’re looking to unload some of your fortune for a good cause, this may be it–big donors will win big accolades.

The Olive Garden For some gourmands or foodies, the Saanenland is the height of delicious experiences with more than a dozen Gault & Millau and Michelin-starred restaurants. A new kitchen will add Italian gastronomy to that list this December. Januaria Piromallo tells the tale of Tonino Cacace, an Italian entrepreneur who has his sights set on bringing his double Michelin-starred The Olivo to the Promenade. In contrast to The Olive Garden, the United States’ ever-popular Italian restaurant chain, we expect Cacace will forgo the extra warranty on his pots and pans, and dare to cook the pasta with a pinch of salt. End of the Line August is coming to a close and this is GSTAADLIFE’s final issue of the summer. Our traditional off-season lasts through December, when our first issue of the winter will arrive just in time for the holidays. Until then, dear readers, enjoy the upcoming season of colourful leaves and even more colourful adventures.

Best regards, Alexis Munier Editor in Chief

LETTER FROM THE EDITOR // GSTAADLIFE // ISSUE 6 // AUGUST 28, 2015

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Photo: Milagros Branca subtlepatterns.com

READER'S PAGE Your Vision of Gstaad

I may be Italian by birth, but I am "Gstaadoise" in my heart. I’ve been coming up to slow down since I was 13 years old. I attended Le Rosey and graduated after five years in 1980. I spend my winters in the Oberland but cannot stay away too long–I’m now here in spring, summer, and fall, too! All seasons offer amazing colours, panoramas, and scents. Besides the mountains, the Saanenland has much to offer in its quaint villages. This photo was taken on Gstaad's Promenade, where I love to see the colourful flags of various cantons and regions flying.

– Milagros Branca: A writer and snapshot photographer, she is the author of one novel published in Italy and India, as well as an iPhone photography book. Milagros is currently preparing a new iPhone photo book, which will focus only on Gstaad, her love.

If you would like to share your photograph of the Saanenland, please send it with your contact details and a brief description to info@gstaadlife.ch.


Photo: AvS

Magazine

3 Letter from the Editor by Alexis Munier 4 Reader's Page 21 Last Word by Diana Oehrli 22 Events Calendar

Local News

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6 Europe's Biggest Country Fest 6 City Council President to Step Down 7 Live Opera & Ballet in the Off-Season 9 Gstaad Funi on its Way to Restoration

Sports & Leisure

10 On the Road with Bugatti 13 Siassi Triumphs at First-Ever Monza 14 Fitness Facilities Fit for a King

Photo: ©Raphael FAUX/Gstaadphotography.com

Photo: AvS Archiv

Arts & Culture

15 Star Tenor Jonas Kaufmann at Menuhin Festival Gstaad

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Profile

16 His Father's Son – Interview with Huck Scarry

Flora & Fauna 19 Hands-Off

Mushrooms – Flora & Fauna by Bert Inäbnit

Lifestyle

20 An Italian Entrepreneur's Journey

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Read

Cover Photo: Alexis Munier www.gstaadlife.com

at www.gstaadlife.com

Twitter: @GSTAADLIFE // Facebook: Gstaad Life // Youtube: GstaadLife GSTAADLIFE, Anzeiger von Saanen, Kirchstrasse 6, 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 // Publishing Director: Markus Iseli, markus.iseli@mmedien.ch // Editor in Chief: Alexis Munier, alexis.munier@gstaadlife.ch // Contributors: Januaria Piromallo, Diana Oehrli // Layout: Epu Shaha // Advertising: Eliane Behrend, eliane.behrend@mmedien.ch, Phone: 033 744 88 74 // Subscriptions: Flurina Welten, flurina.welten@mmedien.ch, Phone: 033 748 88 74

CONTENTS // GSTAADLIFE // ISSUE 6 // AUGUST 28, 2015

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Photo: zVg

American country western legend Patty Loveless will star at Country Night Gstaad.

Europe's Biggest Country Fest Country Night Gstaad to Host Patty Loveless and More

Country Night Gstaad is the biggest attraction of its kind in Europe, and draws country music buffs from Germany, England and beyond–all excited at the prospect of a weekend full of beer, burgers, and the best entertainment country western music has to offer. BY GSTAADLIFE

This year, the event will concentrate performances into two days rather than the historical three. Friday, 11 September and Saturday, 12 September will host a lineup of big American names with a touch of Swiss for good measure. Chris Young, Patty Loveless, and the Gatlin Brothers will all grace the Saanenland’s stage over the course of Country Night Gstaad.

Young, whose 30 years bely his name, has a distinctive style and pronounced gravelly twang that won him the number one spot on the reality program Nashville Star in 2006. Patty Loveless on the other hand, is old hat on the scene. The Kentucky native has made a solid career spanning several three decades with her so-called Neotraditional country infused with hints of bluegrass.

perfectly suited to their Texas-style music that features pop-inspired melodies and traditional accompaniment.

The Gatlin Brothers could easily be mistaken for triplets; the three have been in the business since the 1970’s and their three part harmonies prove some things are best kept in the family. Larry Gaitlin’s voice has an operatic quality that sets it apart from his contemporaries–which is

Local businessman and country aficionado Marcel Bach first held the event 27 years ago, bringing together some of the top musicians in the genre. It’s set to be a grand old weekend, so don’t miss Country Night Gstaad, 11–12 September in Gstaad. www.countrynight-gstaad.ch

Bringing a Swiss touch to the weekend is Philip Fankhauser, who is better known in the blues genre. His music crosses boundaries and with enough honky-tonk influence, is a perfect fit to wrap up the 27th Country Night Gstaad.

City Council President to Step Down Kropf States Professional and Familial Reasons for Departure

After a decade in public service, Aldo Kropf has announced he will step down from his position as Saanen City Council President by 31 October. BY GSTAADLIFE

Kropf, a trained chemist who owns the pharmacy on Gstaad’s Promenade, has served as president since 2009 and after winning relection was expected to stay on through his 2016 mandate.

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Part-Time Pay, Full-Time Responsibility

But the 70% position demanded more like full time work, which according to Kropf was unsustainable. “The political commitment claimed so much of me that I couldn't sustain the level of time and energy needed for my business and family,” said Kropf in a press release. “I had to realise that I could no longer do justice to the

LOCAL NEWS // GSTAADLIFE // ISSUE 6 // AUGUST 28, 2015

desired extent because of the aforementioned obligations." Small Town with a Big City Budget Although it has just 7,000 inhabitants, the community of Saanen has a budget of nearly CHF 90 million per year–a substantial amount to manage. Things in the political sphere in the region are not exactly peaceful; with big challenges like a struggling mountain railways


Photo: ©Raphael FAUX/Gstaadphotography.com

company (BDG) and hospital controversy (see our August article on the current state of local health care), significant time must be taken to properly analyse the issues and manage all stakeholders. The Right to Remain Silent All council members except one have declined to stand for Kropf's position. That man is current vice-president Albert Bach-Tiemer, a member of the rightwing SVP, Swiss People's Party. According to council bylaws, if only one candidate wishes to run for the office of president, the council will hold an internal silent election. However, there is still time for the political parties to seek out additional candidates. If they do, a general public election would be held at the earliest in November 2015.

Saanen City Council President Aldo Kropf with his wife Marianne.

Live Opera & Ballet in the Off-Season Ciné-Theatre Gstaad Hosts Royal Opera House Performances

The Saanenland continues its plentiful selection of excellent classical music. Beginning 23 September, Ciné-Theater Gstaad will broadcast a new season of live full-length opera and ballet productions from the Royal Opera House in London.

dance’s greatest–Jerome Robbins and George Ballanchine, amongst others–will be held. The ballet highlight of the season however is the world premiere of Liam Scarlett’s Frankenstein, a full-length dance spectacle based on Mary Shelley’s horror novel of the same name.

BY GSTAADLIFE

Witnessing such performances on the big screen live is uniquely thrilling–nearly as moving and dramatic as if one were seated in the Royal Opera House itself–and sometimes with a better view. No need for opera glasses; clear views of singers’ facial expressions and dancers’ pirouettes are available to all. Four ballets will be broadcast at Ciné-Theatre Gstaad in 2015–2016 including Romeo and Juliet, The Nutcracker, Rhapsody/The Two Pigeons, and the ever-popular Giselle. In addition, an evening of scenes from Carmen, Viscera, and Tchaikovsky’s Pas de deux choreographed by some of

For opera lovers, the season will include traditional favourites, some of which are getting the full new-production treatment. One such work is Mozart’s Le Nozze di Figaro, starring Erwin Schrott, which is sure to bring some surprises while in the capable hands of director David McVicar. Cavalleria Rusticana/Pagliacci, composers Leoncavallo and Mascagni’s greatest hits, get the usual double-billing and will be conducted

Tickets may be purchased in advance at Ciné-Theater Gstaad, with prices beginning at CHF 22 for students and seniors, and ranging up to CHF 35 depending on seating. Subscriptions are available at a reduced cost. For the full schedule and more information, visit www.cine-theater.ch

Photo: Royal Opera House

“As an arts lover, I’m thrilled to bring these live performances to Gstaad,” says Ciné-Theater owner Hansjörg Beck. “When the village life draws to a lull in the off-season, locals and guests will have an option for first-rate entertainment.”

by Anthony Pappano, who excelled at the Menuhin Festival Gstaad last year. Productions of La Traviata, Werther, and Lucia di Lammermoor are also set to grace the silver screen in 2015–2016. Don't miss Bryn Terfel in the title role of Mussorgsky’s Boris Gudonov, which director Richard Jones will present in a brand new production.

LOCAL NEWS // GSTAADLIFE // ISSUE 6 // AUGUST 28, 2015

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SUCCESSFULLY DEVELOPING THE DROGERIE VON GRÜNIGEN The Drogerie von Grünigen is undergoing a change of generation. After 35 years at the helm of the company, Agata and Johann Peter von Grünigen will no longer be in charge of the day-to-day business. The next generation is ready to take up more responsibility in the family run business. Both stores in Gstaad will continue to provide specialized services in health, beauty, and well-being. The Drogerie von Grünigen is one of the businesses in the Saanenland with the longest tradition. 170 years ago the veterinarian Abraham von Grünigen founded his practice at the Chesery square. The adjacent dispensary supplied the population of Gstaad with ointments and herbal concoctions for people as well as animals. His nephew and his nephew's wife continued the business of Abraham von Grünigen after his death. The building at the Gstaadplatz was built in 1927, where the Drogerie has been situated ever since and undergone several renovations and enlargements. The famous «Benzin-Anneli» turned the business, which also had the first filling station of Gstaad, into a modern Drogerie and perfumery. Johann Peter and Agata were the fifth generation when they took over the business in 1980. They gradually specialized to become a centre for health, beauty, and well-being. Three years ago they integrated the Drogerie in the Migros Centre in Untergstaad.

The new administrative board of the Drogerie von Grünigen: Johann Peter von Grünigen, Elisabeth Huber, and Stefan von Grünigen

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The location at the Promenade in Gstaad

In September, after 35 years, Agata and Johann Peter von Grünigen will step back from the day-to-day business. Johann Peter von Grünigen will focus on strategic issues in his position as president of the administrative board. Stefan von Grünigen and his partner Elisabeth Huber, the next generation to follow, will then take a more active part. Stefan von Grünigen has known the business since he was a boy and has been fulfilling various roles within the family enterprise. After completing his education as a druggist he studied economics at the universities of Bern and Zürich and is now in a leading position in a medium-sized company. Elisabeth Huber is a graduate druggist and responsible for the politics and trade sectors of the Swiss Druggist Association. As members of the administrative board they are committed to continuing the development of the family business. Elisabeth Huber will also be the contact person for the managers of the stores in the Promenade and in Untergstaad. Both stress that «the two locations should provide an outstanding shopping experience for locals as well as our international customers. This includes professional customer consulting from a well trained team and a select line of goods.» Johann Peter von Grünigen is convinced that this gradual and ongoing transition from one

SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION // GSTAADLIFE // ISSUE 6 // AUGUST 28, 2015

generation to the next is the ideal solution: «I am very happy that the business remains family run and the two locations will remain open.» The Drogerie von Grünigen has a product range of over 30'000 products for your health, beauty, and well-being: from orthodox to complementary medicine, cosmetics, organic deli food, baby and kids products, as well as a perfumery (in the store at the Promenade) with all major international brands and an array of exclusive boutique perfumes. Furthermore, in both stores pharmaceuticals are produced according to the von Grünigens’ own formulas and thus an almost 200-year-old tradition is continuing. Two graduate druggists, nine trained druggists, and six apprentices offer their expert advice and are looking forward to your next visit.

Pharmaceuticals made in-store according to their own formula


Photos: AvS

"Funi 2", the Saanenland's last funicular, was once a vital part of ski industry transport.

Gstaad Funi on its Way to Restoration Next Stop, the Swiss Museum of Transport in Luzern

The Saanenland’s last funicular is currently awaiting restoration in Luzern, where it will then grace the prestigious Swiss Museum of Transport. BY GSTAADLIFE

Switzerland’s most popular museum, The Museum of Transport is a big tourist draw, with over half a million visitors per year. The historic funi would be the first and only ambassador for the Saanenland, which the tourism office hopes would spark interest in visiting our region.

that began to make funiculars. The first project, the Gstaadrüti-Wispile Funi, was so successful that they constructed another, the Hornberg Funi. Before ski lifts were invented, the funi was vital in Swiss winter resorts. However time has taken its toll–Funi 2 will need full conservation, restoration, and renovation. This includes everything from surface cleaning to corrosion removal, woodwork, metalwork, and fiberglass installation.

Putting the Fun in Funding The total cost of restoring Funi 2 clocks in at CHF 125,000, to which Gstaad-Saanenland Tourism and the Swiss Museum of Transport in Luzern will both contribute. Donations are accepted to help cover the rest of the cost, and sponsors of CHF 10,000 or more will be mentioned in a short film shown at the Museum if desired. For more information, please contact project manager Joe Bürki at joe. buerki@gstaad.ch .

The funicular, also known as a sleigh lift, is called Funi 2 and was used on the Hornberg in Saanenmöser. It is one of just two remaining examples of this unique mode of transport. Early Days of Winter Sports Before WWI, skiers had to walk up the slopes with skins on their skis and then make their way down. Others even hired horse-drawn sleighs to take them up the mountains. One local man, Arnold Annen, had a brilliant idea to speed up this process. With his partner Oswald von Siebenthal, he founded a company in 1934

"Funi 2" being hoisted up and carried to its new home at the Swiss Museum of Transport.

LOCAL NEWS // GSTAADLIFE // ISSUE 6 // AUGUST 28, 2015

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Photos: Hans Matti

My first Bugatti in front of the old BKW depot in June 1960.

On the Road with Bugatti Local Car Enthusiast & his Classic Supercars

Gstaader Hans Matti shares the story of his lifelong passion with Bugatti cars. BY HANS MATTI

If you were around Gstaad this past winter, you may have noticed the striking Bugatti supercars displayed in the roadside showroom of the new Bettlerhaus on the downtown promenade. One of the Veyron models was the standard 1001 horsepower supercar and the other was the Supersport version boasting 1200 horsepower. But these two handsome Veyrons on show this winter on the promenade were not the first Bugattis in Gstaad. The history of these classic cars in the Saanenland goes back to my early obsession with automobiles.

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driven by such distinguished personages as doctors and other local luminaries, the only people provided with gas allowances. What conveyances there were came in living form; my immediate surroundings boasted cows, horses, goats, pigs, and chickens. But the military airport in Saanen provided me with endless entertainment. The landing loop of the planes coming in for landing passed just above our old farm, and I could observe the planes swooping in at only 100 feet above ground. Thus my fascination with planes was born. I dreamed of becoming a pilot. But between school, studying, and a lack of time and money, that dream proved unrealistic.

Planes, Trains, and Bugattis I was born in Gstaad in 1937 at the far end of the Oberbort neighborhood on the Turbach side. When I was a small child during World War II, life here in the Saanenland was much like it had been in the 19th century; the locals produced everything by hand.

So I transferred my affections to the motorcar. After spotting seven Bugatti cars in Walter Messerli's scrap yard in Kaufdorf, I set my sights on one of them, but Walter would not sell any of them. Note: Today you can see those classic cars today in the French Musée de l'Automobile, part of the Schlumpf collection in Mulhouse, France.

There were almost no motorcars–fewer than ten in the whole of Saanenland,

Calling All Bugattis So in 1959 I ran an ad in the Swiss Auto-

SPORTS & LEISURE // GSTAADLIFE // ISSUE 6 // AUGUST 28, 2015

mobile-Revue for a Bugatti car. At least ten people responded to the ad, and I was offered at least ten cars. But I could just afford one–I decided on a type 44 drop headcoupe (chassis 44'1326). The body was designed and built by Alexis Kellner of Berlin in 1930. The car stood forlorn under a cover in the used-cars lot of a small garage in Oberburg near Burgdorf. The car was a bit scruffy, flush with all the patina of the last 30 years. On the plus side, it was all original and in decent running condition. The deal was quick. I paid the CHF 1650 asking price by closing the bank-booklet my parents and relatives had sacrificed to build on my behalf over the years. I remember that my father was not at all happy to see this money disappear into an old car. But the garage owner who sold the car was so happy to have sold that old car–one that nobody else really wanted anyway in those days–that he offered me a new battery for free, just to seal the deal. The next step: Get a temporary plate in order to transfer the car to Gstaad. At that time I attended ETH in Lausanne, where there was nowhere to store the car. My father found


a place next to the house of Anita Moratti (widow of his late friend Marcel Moratti) who lived in Gschwend. The plate was fixed to the car and off I went to Gstaad, planning to take the Burgdorf-Thun-Spiez-Zweisimmen-Saanenmoser route. The Art of Racing in the Rain This was early in November 1959. It was the first time ever that I drove a Bugatti car. The weather was wet and dull and in Zweisimmen it began to snow, that fresh snow which you all know is slippery like soap. Worse, the tyres were all but new; they had almost no thread left. Even today I do not know how I got to Saanenmöser. The car slid sideways all the time, but finally with a lot of luck I got to Gstaad and parked the car next to Anita Moratti’s house. In order to protect it during the winter to come, my father helped me build a wooden shelter around the car. Fast, Faster, Fastest My love affair with that first Bugatti was short-lived. In the summer of 1960 I decided I should have a Bugatti racing car, so I sold the type 44 and bought a Bugatti Grand-Prix car–a car that I still own today (Chassis 4655/4751). It's been a long ride in my Bugattis, but it's been one heck of a ride. I encourage you to take a spin in the classic car of your choice sometime soon. Note: The type 44 shown in this article has survived and resides now with a collector in Switzerland.

The Bugatti recently on display in Gstaad.

Bugatti – Automobile History in the Making Bugatti has had a tumultuous history as far as car companies are concerned. Yet the brand has been revived several times in the just over 100 years it has been in production. Bugatti was founded in 1909 by Ettore Bugatti in Molsheim, Alsace, which was then a part of Germany (the city is now known as Mulhouse, France) But Ettore Bugatti was no Henry Ford–he had no desire to mass-produce automobiles or arm each family with a new form of transportation. Born in 1881 in Milan, Bugatti grew up in a cultured, artistic family; his father Carlo was a painter, sculptor, and furniture maker who had an eye for beautiful form and exquisite detail. He encouraged the young Bugatti to study art, but at age 17 Ettore discovered his passion for the automobile and decided to become an engineer. His first design, a petrol-powered tricycle, won a design competition and inspired him to reach further with the prototype for a car. In 1909 Bugatti set up production in Molsheim and at that time also decided to create a small, light-weight vehicle to drive the Le Mans race. It took second place, and inspired Bugatti to continue to design race cars. In 1922 his cylindrical model known as “le Cigar” took second prize at the AFC Grand Prix and the new models and prizes kept coming for the next decade. Automobile historians

agree that his designs were visionary for the time. His four-speed gearbox, four-cylinder overhead-valve engine were just two of the details that made his cars unique. Next came a big change for the company; Bugatti’s Type 41 Royale, the big-engined car, the most expensive in the world to build, nearly bankrupted the company at the start of the Great Depression. However the French government had him turn the design into a train, which became the first Autorail. The company saw success with their newfound train production, but tragedy struck in the 30’s when Bugatti’s son and future successor Jean died testing one of their race cars. Bugatti ceased production of automobiles and Ettore died in 1947. Without an heir, the company withered and was finally sold to Hispana Suiza, an aircraft company. In 1984 it was sold again to an Italian entrepreneur Romano Artioli who released a new super car in 1991 for the company’s 110th anniversary. Finally, in 1998 Volkswagen took over the brand, which was then in bankruptcy, and used it to revive its luxury line. To this day, the company continues to release new models in limited production, and remains a very exclusive, pricey choice for discerning collectors.

Just arrived with the first snow (1959).

SPORTS & LEISURE // GSTAADLIFE // ISSUE 6 // AUGUST 28, 2015

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TO THE MANOR BORN: HISTORIC HOUSE SALE Of noble and private provenance, the contents of the 18th-century Château d’Hauteville is remarkable both in the breadth and depth of continental works of art. Château d’Hauteville, near Montreux

Public Preview at the Château 12 noon to 7pm Friday, 4 September Saturday, 5 September Sunday, 6 September A treasure trove for enthusiasts of North Americana: War of 1812 and American Civil War

The selection, including paintings, furniture, clocks, sculpture, tapestries, glass, arms and armor, carpets, silver, European and Asian porcelain and works of art, dates from antiquity to the late 20th-century. Such a broad and cosmopolitan collection invites a fascinating voyage through changing aristocratic tastes across generations and continents.

Directions to the Château: hoteldesventes.ch

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SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION // GSTAADLIFE // ISSUE 6 // AUGUST 28, 2015

Auction at the Château Friday, 11 September Saturday, 12 September

Auction catalog – by post, call 022 320 11 77 – hoteldesventes.ch


Photos: zVg

Siassi Triumphs at First-Ever Monza Gstaad Automobile Club Member Wins “Sixties Endurance Race”

Siam Siassi completed his first race at Monza Historic 2015 by standing on the podium after finishing 1st overall. The Autodromo Nazionale di Monza, known in Italian racing circles as ‘La Pista Magica’, is the fastest circuit of the season, and the passionate Italian fans give the race a unique atmosphere. By Gstaad Automobile Club The two-hour Sixties’ Endurance race is the traditional finale on Saturday afternoon and is more often than not dominated by the Shelby Cobras. The high-speed nature of the Monza circuit also suited the Cobra, which was underlined in qualifying. The first six places were filled by Cobras with the car driven by the Dutch pairing of David Hart and former F1 racer Giedo van der Garde fastest of all. Hart also grabbed the lead early in the race but despite controlling his pace, his Cobra succumbed to the heat with boiled brakes.

in Siamak Siassi’s E-Type and from the off he was in the top five and chasing down the Cobra’s. As the pit window approached for their compulsory five minute and twenty five second pit stop another Cobra dropped out of the running putting team Siassi in third place. Team Siassi had elected to make their stop just after the hour mark, a quick stop for fuel and drive to pit box to wait for the minimum stoppage time to elapse then followed. As the compulsory stoppage time came to its conclusion the car exited the pits with a total time of five minutes and twenty nine seconds shown on the timing-screens! Andrew Beverley had just grabbed the lead from Siamak Siassi in his Jaguar as

the race then further progressed, however as Beverley tried to build a safe margin with two fast laps sadly these proved too much and Beverley parked his overheating Cobra before doing any serious damage. This promoted Siassi back into the lead in the E-Type Coupe. From that point the team never looked back and they held firm to the finish winning the race by over a minute! “Monza is such a historic circuit and to win there is a really special feeling said Siassi. Monza is bellissimo! It’s the fastest circuit we get to drive throughout the year and coming across the long start / finish straight you really are absolutely flat out. It’s a very technical track which is all about late braking, riding and bouncing off the kerbs… it’s pretty spectacular!”

In total ten Cobra’s had entered the race and at the end of qualifying two E-Types had finished seventh and ninth on the grid, making them the only cars to have managed to mix it with the mighty V8’s at that stage. The retirement of Hart and Van Der Garde just after forty minutes of the race was the first of many Cobra retirements, which also included later leader Andrew Beverley. Wolfgang Kaufmann had started

SPORTS & LEISURE // GSTAADLIFE // ISSUE 6 // AUGUST 28, 2015

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Fitness Facilities Fit for a King Time has taken its toll on the Sportzentrum–much of the facility hasn’t changed in more than forty years. But there isn’t much time left to enjoy the out–dated locker rooms and vintage feel of the interiors, as residents and guests alike can now look forward to the centre’s full renovation. BY GSTAADLIFE

The project is aiming to keep the Sportzentrum competitive by offering new firstclass facilities including an outdoor pool and wellness centre. Nearly all funding has been secured and construction is due to begin early next year. Renovation Plan Sportzentrum Gstaad AG has a large amount of work to be achieved in several phases. First, the total renovation of the main building will include the addition of modern equipment and bright fitness rooms; out-dated locker areas will be refurbished and walkways will be updated as well. A wellness area will be created, which will be convenient for guests staying at most modest hotels. “It’s a big increase in value for all people,” says Aldo Kropf, the municipality of Saanen’s outgoing president, “not to mention for hotels that don’t have wellness centres.” Swimmers in the Saanenland have particular reason to celebrate the Sportzentrum’s complete overhaul. The pool will get a full makeover, including enlarging it and adding a section for year-round outdoor swimming. To make the centre even more family-friendly, a children’s wading pool will be built as well. If all goes according to plan, the new pool area is expected to reopen in December 2016. As for the rest of the centre, all is set to début spring 2017. Until then, an interim solution for current classes will be found. Vast Facilities The Sportzerntrum will boast a range of activities and facilities upon completion. This includes the indoor pool with a 500m2 sauna and fitness area, a tennis hall with

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Visualization: AvS/zVg

Sportzentrum to Begin Complete Overhaul in Spring 2016

sections for minigolf and events, a curling hall for winter use that will double as an events location in summer, and dining options–a restaurant called Bulle d’O and the low-key Curling-bar. The company also runs Saanen’s “Mon Bijou”outdoor pool and the ice hockey and skating rink off the Promenade, which hosts the tennis tournament as well as several other annual events. Funding Nearly There The project is budgeted at nearly CHF 24 million, and nearly all the necessary funds have been secured. Major donors include Canton Bern, who will give a total of CHF

4 million coming from BECO Sport Funds and the cantonal tourism promotion budget. The municipality of Saanen agreed in December 2013 to contribute CHF 14 million, while just this summer Gsteig agreed to hand over CHF 350,000. Rougemont, in nearby Canton Vaud, will chip in CHF 300,000. Still to come are the decisions of Lauenen, Canton Vaud and the Pays d’Enhaut communities of Château-d’Oex and Rossinière. Additionally, the Sportzentrum offered shares to the public at CHF 50 each, raising a total of CHF 1 million. There is only CHF 2.5 million left to finance; as soon as the amount is fully secured, construction on the project can begin in earnest.

Sport Lodge Gstaad While there is much construction to occur, part of the renovation project and renewal of the centre has already been achieved. The Sportzentrum constructed several new chalets last year which are known as the Sport Lodge Gstaad. A partnership between Saanen and Sportzentrum AG, the Lodge hopes to woo sports teams that wish to train in the Saanenland. For the next few years however, the chalets are rented from January to March each winter to house Le Rosey students while the famed boarding school awaits the eventual opening of their new campus in Schönried. Additionally, this summer the Lodge was rented by the Menuhin Festival Gstaad, which housed student musicians on the property. It’s a good start, but further recruitment will be needed to achieve management’s ambitious plans for the Lodge.

SPORTS & LEISURE // GSTAADLIFE // ISSUE 6 // AUGUST 28, 2015

“Our goal is to generate between 6,000 and 8,000 overnight stays per year,” says Ruedi Kunz, President, Sportzentrum Gstaad AG. Groups of 20 or more are welcome at the Lodge, which has 180 beds. There is a breakfast room where catered meals can be delivered later for lunch or dinner, however the chalets lack a large industrial kitchen. At between CHF 25 per night (for children 6 -12 years old) to CHF 72 per night, including breakfast, Kunz insists the prices are competitive with the new youth hostel in Saanen. Better Late than Never It’s not too late to get in on the action, literally. In February 2014, the facility decided to extend stockholder possibilities to end August 2015. For another few days, anyone is welcome to buy into Sportzentrum Gstaad AG, at CHF 50 per share.


Cult of Kaufmann

When does 40 minutes seem like hours? When you’re waiting impatiently for the handsome and hardy tenor Jonas Kaufmann, of course. At the Menuhin Festival Gstaad’s tent concert 21 August, nearly two thousand guests did just that. Waited. Impatiently. BY ALEXIS MUNIER

Photo: ©Raphael FAUX/Gstaadphotography.com

Menuhin Crowd Goes Wild for One of World's Top Tenors

Knowing he wouldn’t appear until after intermission, the crowd was giddy with excitement. Any piece before Kaufmann’s entrance would have probably been wasted on an audience counting the minutes before his appearance. Unfortunately, the music that occupied the first half of the concert was Strauss’ “Aus Italien”symphonic fantasy in G-major op.16, a somewhat rarely heard work that is not regarded as the composer’s best. Most accurately described as a tone poem, the piece does some things right, including the opening movement’s romantic, Wagner-esque harmonic progression. The fourth movement, based on the Neapolitan folksong “Funiculi, funicula," got toes tapping, though it became tiresome and repetitive. The orchestra, however, seemed to really enjoy themselves. They were upbeat and all smiles, especially the cellists and bassists, making it the liveliest moment of their entire performance. Intermission & Intermezzo When the chimes rang at intermission, noting the pause was coming to a close, eager guests nearly tripped over one another as they rushed hurriedly to take their seats. Apart the opening Verdi aria “Quando le sere al pacido” from Luisa Miller, Kaufmann’s aria list read like a greatest hits of verismo–“Cielo e mar” from Ponchielli’s La Gioconda, “E lucevan le stelle” from Tosca (Puccini), and “Addio a la madre” from Mascagni’s Cavalleria Rusticana. The songs were interwoven with well-played orchestral pieces from the operas of the same name in most cases. This leads one to wonder why the "Intermezzo" from Leoncavallo’s I Pagliacci, was not followed up by a rendition of “Vesti la giubba.” Perhaps Kaufmann wasn’t in the mood to clown around.

A Night to Remember While it’s clear that Kaufmann stole the show (it was his show, after all), the Sinfonieorchester Basel with Jochen Rieder at the helm held its ground with a solid performance. Several musicians in particular stood out: Concertmaster Soyoung Yoon led the fine, balanced string section, while oboist Tilmann Zahn infused the opening solo to “E lucevan le stelle”, Cavaradossi’s final love letter to Tosca, with appropriate heart and melancholy. If anything, the first-half of the programme could have contained a meatier musical selection. On the other hand, it makes sense that Strauss, unequivocally one of the greatest composers for orchestra, opened the concert. Like the Italian verismo style that sees arias arriving more organically from the music rather than set in traditional recitativo-aria form, Strauss’ symphonic fantasy breaks traditional boundaries as well, and pleases in some spots with eccentric, whimsical orchestration. “Aus Italien” may be Italy-inspired, but it is still distinctly German. Even with an Aperol-Spritz in hand, a German in Italy is still a German…That said, Kaufmann’s dark good looks, smouldering intensity, and excellent diction could have him passing for an Italian any day of the week. In contrast to the refined elegance of bel canto singing, verismo works were first performed in a

natural, emotional style. Today’s masters, Kaufmann included, have managed a true feat–retaining a bel canto technique while applying emotional intensity and raw fervour to their singing. He Came, He Saw, He Sang Kaufmann gave a total of four encores. Just when you thought he’d gone for good, Kaufmann would succumb to the roaring applause and give the audience what they wanted. The second encore, “Das ist mein Ganzes Herz”, from Lehar’s Das Land des Lächelns was particularly well received by the German-speaking audience. Recent reviews have suggested Kaufmann’s busy performance schedule has taken a bit of shine off his tone. But despite a few scratchy moments, his voice soared easily while infusing every sound with the–pardon my French–sexiness of his deep, rich timbre. While he’s at home in the dramatic works nowadays, one can’t help but crave an occasional taste of repertoire gone by. Kaufmann’s sweetly sung “Un’aura amorosa” from Cosi fan tuttè for example. The rare trifecta of great looks, voice, and presence does not occur every day in the opera world. He might have two decades of beautiful voice left in him, but time flies. Run, don't walk, to experience first-hand the vocal prowess and heady charisma of Jonas Kaufmann before it’s too late.

ARTS & CULTURE // GSTAADLIFE // ISSUE 6 // AUGUST 28, 2015

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Photos: Diana MacKenzie © The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art

Huck Scarry with a stuffed Lowly Worm at the Eric Carle Picture Book Museum in Amherst, Massachusetts, USA.

His Father's Son

Huck Scarry on his Family's Past, Present & Future The books of American children's author Richard Scarry have been translated into more than 20 languages and are read all around the world. They still delight readers young and old, just as they did when they were first published–some of them more than fifty years ago. In 2014, Richard Scarry's son Huck Scarry found the unfinished manuscript for The Best Lowly Worm Book Ever! in the family's chalet by chance. He finished it himself in his father’s traditional style, and it was published last year, beginning a Renaissance of sorts, during which several classic Richard Scarry books were re-released. INTERVIEW BY ALEXIS MUNIER

Huck Scarry welcomed GSTAADLIFE’s Alexis Munier to his family's chalet to discuss his father’s legacy, his children’s future, and the art of being a “wonderful” father.

GL: What was it like as a child to have a famous father? HS: We always had a nice relationship and were very close. He was a wonderful father and I have wonderful memories of him. My father spent lots of time with me and we did

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many things together, be it sailing, skiing, or even sharing a coin collection. Later, I sometimes gave my father a hand, colouring his funny illustrations.

GL: You’re a father of four; have any of your children followed in the family footsteps? HS: My children are all very creative and have found ways to incorporate art into their lives. Fiona lives in London and is a stylist for fashion magazines but she now manages a branch of a Parisian gallery that specialises in Art Deco furniture. Olympia is an artist. She co-founded Gstaad's Elevation 1049 art event last year (2014). I think it was generally very well-received, and I know that many locals found it both interesting and amusing. I think it's terrific that Elevation will be back next February for it's second edition! Katja is training to be a schoolteacher in Vienna, and my youngest, Julian, is a budding fashion designer who is finishing high school this year.

GL: You speak so lovingly of your father and your relationship. Would you also describe yourself as a wonderful father?

PROFILE // GSTAADLIFE // ISSUE 6 // AUGUST 28, 2015

HS: Well, when I'm with my own children, I often have a thought for my father. He always did things just right!

GL: Does your artistic talent come exclusively from your father? HS: My mother, Patricia, or Patsy Scarry, was also a wonderful writer for children. She wrote many of the earliest books that my father illustrated. Later, she wrote several books with stories inspired by things I did as a child. This autumn, a large book of stories will be published in Dutch, and I hope that it will do well enough for other of her books to follow.

GL: Speaking of your childhood, where did you grow up? HS: I spent my childhood in Connecticut but we visited Europe whenever my father was able to. But at the end of each trip, my parents always regretted having to return home so soon. So my father decided we should just pack-up and move to Switzerland, where we would always be close to the slopes! He had no idea that one needed a permit to stay here, but when the Police des Etrangers got


McGraw-Hill, who had a creative studio in Luzern under the direction of Emil Bührer, a very talented Swiss designer. He made books about mythology, flags, cookbooks, and all sorts of interesting topics.

HS: I am taking a break this summer for the first time since I was a young man, just enjoying myself, my family, and nature. I’m keeping busy though–I love to hike in the mountains here. I’ll sometimes bring along my alphorn, and play on a summit overlooking the valley.

GL: The alphorn! How long have you been playing?

wind of us, once they saw the work my father was doing, we were immediately given a Permis B, and that was that.

Later I worked for a magazine in Lausanne parttime, which gave me the afternoons to work on my own illustrations. It was a period that I enjoyed very much, and led up to me doing my own children’s books. One thing led to the other and then I started working full time on my own projects.

GL: When did you first discover Gstaad?

GL: Can we still find your books today?

HS: I was in my twenties when my parents bought the chalet here in 1974. We’ve done some renovation but the chalet remains much as it did then, a cosy little place packed with books, papers, and drawings.

HS: Most of my books are out of print. They are for slightly older children, as I didn't want to step into a field too similar to my father's.

He was a wonderful father and I have wonderful memories of him... when I'm with my own children, I often have a thought for my father. He always did things just right! Huck Scarry

GL: What’s the hardest part of illustration? GL: Did your father teach you to draw? HS: I think I learned to draw by osmosis. I loved to draw and was always drawing as a child. My father's studio was on the top floor of our three-storey home and from up there we had a view over Long Island Sound. It always smelled beautifully of sharpened pencils and rubber cement. He’d be working at his desk and I’d lie down on my tummy and sketch…it all came very naturally to me.

GL: How did you progress to illustrating your own children’s books? HS: When I was young man I studied art history in Florence and etching in Paris with William Hayter, who was known for his work with single-plate colour-printing. Much as I loved being in Paris, I had to start making a living and went to New York.

HS: Keeping it fun! My father once gave advice to a colleague, saying:" If you're not having fun, you're doing something wrong." When I'm working, I always keep that line in mind.

HS: I have always been drawn to the strange and melancholic sounds this ancient instrument makes. A few years ago I decided to try it myself, and now I practice as often as I can. This summer I took part in Fritz Frautschi's week-long workshop in Schönried, and it was one of the best things I've ever experienced! I don't practice the alphorn much at home as I don't want to disturb my neighbours, and I like taking the instrument up into nature where the sound is at its best.

GL: Not disturbing your neighbours, that’s very Swiss. Does the peace and calm here offset a busy lifestyle in Vienna? HS: It’s really the summer in Greece that contrasts with the time I spend in Switzerland. I teach watercolour at a summer programme on the island of Zakynthos and it’s the high-point in my yearly calendar. When your students are relaxed, yet eager and concentrated, the teaching is so easy and fun!

GL: Are you based permanently in Gstaad? HS: I split my year between homes in Vienna and Gstaad. Now that my kids are older I’m looking forward to spending still more time in the Saanenland.

GL: Is it true that Lowly Worm was a sort-of original “Where’s Waldo”?

GL: Why didn’t you stay in New York, a hotspot for art and artists?

HS: Lowly Worm, one of my dad’s best-loved characters, started as a way to search out a tiny character throughout his books. Fans wrote to him and said they loved finding the little fellow in hidden places, so he started adding in more Lowly Worm. He’s simple to draw and both kids and adults love him.

HS: I missed being in Europe. I missed the mountains and found New York was just too big and noisy so I came back. I worked for

GL: What projects are you currently working on?

PROFILE // GSTAADLIFE // ISSUE 6 // AUGUST 28, 2015

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SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION // GSTAADLIFE // ISSUE 6 // AUGUST 28, 2015


Photos: Bert Inäbnit

Dotted stem bolete

Strawberries and cream or devil’s tooth

Hands-Off Mushrooms

Summer Series – Bert Inäbnit's Flora & Fauna When you read about mushrooms here, you might expect tips about the best places to find the tastiest specimens. Sorry if this disappoints you, but we are going to tell you about mushrooms you had better leave where they are. BY BERT INÄBNIT, TRANSLATION BY MARKUS ISELI

One of them is so rare you had better leave it where you find it for others to see; one creates a toxic reaction in combination with alcohol (not to be recommended if you like to accompany your mushrooms with a glass of wine); and one has the name of a sweet dessert even though it does not taste like it at all.

The dotted stem bolete looks more like your regular mushroom with stem and cap. It is similar to the common porcini–but only at the first glance. If you are not colour-blind you will easily see the difference once you pick it up. Instead of the whitish/yellowish pores typical for the porcini, the dotted stem bolete has orange-red pores. It also changes colour on the stem when you press it slightly, turning to a greenish blue where it has been touched. At the latest, when you cut it up, you will note the difference to the porcini. The intensely yellow flesh stains dark blue as soon as it is exposed to oxygen. Funny enough, this process is reversed when you cook the mushroom, as if it couldn’t quite make up its mind.

The lurid bolete is a close brother and shows the same reactions upon touch and contact to oxygen, but you want to make sure you do not confuse them. While the dotted stem bolete can be eaten without a worry, the lurid bolete is slightly toxic when uncooked. And, even if cooked, it causes adverse gastric reactions when it is consumed in combination with alcohol. And last, we get to a mushroom that looks toxic when it is “only” inedible. When young, the white velvety cap bleeds a red liquid, which stays there in the shape of drops. This distinct feature of this mushroom has earned it a range of descriptive names. It is variously called strawberries and cream, bleeding tooth fungus, red-juice tooth, or devil’s tooth. Which name do you prefer, tempting strawberries and cream or the threatening devil’s tooth?

Photo: Raphaël Faux

There is no danger of intoxication with the hericium flagellum, although it does not look like a regular mushroom with stem and cap. It belongs to the family of edible mushrooms that grow on dead wood, though most laypeople would probably not

think of eating it. The drooping spines resemble underwater plants or some kind of coral. Even if it is edible, it is recommended to leave it because it is so rare.

Dotted stem bolete

Hericium flagellum

Nature enthusiast and ornithological expert Bert Inäbnit is a frequent contributor to newspapers in the region, writing articles on birds, butterflies and insects–really any topic that involves Alpine wildlife.

FLORA & FAUNA // GSTAADLIFE // ISSUE 6 // AUGUST 28, 2015

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An Italian Entrepreneur's Journey Tonino Cacace and The Olivo in Gstaad

Photo: zVg

BY JANUARIA PIROMALLO

Two years ago: It’s late morning, and over a cup of strong espresso I open my email to find Tonino Cacace, Italian businessman extraordinaire and owner of luxury hotels and gourmet restaurants around the globe, wants my help. His properties grace the most luxurious destinations–Anacapri, Bodrum (the Saint Tropez of Turkey), and United Arab Emirates. But now, his next challenge is clear: Conquer Switzerland. "I would like to open a restaurant in Switzerland,” Tonino explains in his email. “Do you have any tips for me? I’m torn between St Moritz, Gstaad, and Zermatt…" I answer impulsively, "Leave St. Moritz to Russians and to the nouveau riche. Zermatt is for Club Med-style tourism. But Gstaad is the perfect location for you. When was the last time you were here?” Tonino, with penetrating deep blue eyes– the same shade as the sea in Capri–is called "The Prince of Anacapri” by the international press. Thirty years have passed since his last visit to the Saanenland and he can not remember the specifics of our region nor the village of Gstaad. "Apart from the pedestrian area in the centre, the modern station (Note: I still prefer the older model that was a better fit for our small alpine village), and the proliferation of brand-name luxury stores, not much has changed in sleepy Gstaad,” I assured him. Several months later: Tonino arrives in the Saanenland accompanied by his general manager Ermanno Zanini. I introduce him to a man for whom the challenge of opening a new restaurant here would be child’s play–Gianni Biggi, the deus ex machina of hôtellerie in Gstaad. The team, every last one of them from Naples, is eager to start working on the project straight away. A man of great vision and flair, Tonino’s next step is to search out a suitable location. He discards the Klösterli–too far

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away. Opposite Rialto there is a large ditch he inquires about. “Here the owners will build a new chalet,” I explain. Tonino has a coup de foudre, love at first sight, with the location. I quickly call for an appointment and the negotiations begin. Now there is a second arrival in Gstaad. Fabrizia Frezza, a top Neapolitan architect, begins the design plans. She has the air of success about her, having just restyled the Capri Palace, Tonino’s top hotel in Anacapri. At five stars plus an L, for luxury, it boasts The Olivo restaurant with two Michelin stars and a beach restaurant with one Michelin star. Finally, the warm flavours of the Mediterranean will arrive in the Saanenland. Gstaad’s own The Olivo, which will open in December, is almost ready for business. As expected, the building is exquisite: A stained glass window frames the enchanted mountain suspended in blue. The last rays of sunset from the Alpenrose plunge into the glass.

"At the beginning I took many blows," he remembers, when he was only 23 years old and inherited his first hotel … together with all the debt and responsibility. "My dad prepared me ... I knew what I had to do," Tonino recalls. He might have a Master’s degree in law, but Tonino originally wanted to study philosophy instead. Almost 40 years have passed and the “enlightened” entrepreneur has not stopped dreaming. This whimsy is proved in his choice of art in the hotel. He was the first to put a private pool with the face of Mao by Andy Warhol in the suites. His creations attract the rich and powerful, celebrities included. The first famous face to stay in the Mao suite was Julia Roberts, who came by chance to the Capri Palace. Soon afterward other Hollywood stars fled the noise of Anacapri’s piazzetta for the peace of the hotel. As our adventure nears the end, I wonder, “Will Hollywood stars come here to Gstaad to dine at The Olivo?” Tonino just smiles.

But is perfectionist Tonino Cacace, the man who became a brand, satisfied?

LIFESTYLE // GSTAADLIFE // ISSUE 6 // AUGUST 28, 2015


One of the complaints I hear from foreigners who move to the Saanenland is the high cost of all services. Well, it’s Gstaad after all, I tell them. What did they expect? But actually, I try to make them understand that they’re paying for quality–a highly trained workforce.

Photo: zinkevych – Fotolia

Swiss System Churns Out Results

BY DIANA OEHRLI

And it’s this workforce that is fueling top economic results. For the past five years, the World Economic Forum has ranked Switzerland number one in the world in its Global Competitiveness report, listing its education system as being a significant contributing factor. Researchers at the US-based National Center on Education and the Economy (NCEE) are crediting the Swiss system for being “a critical component” to its economic success and call it the “Gold Standard.” Switzerland’s per capita income at $80,000 is the 3rd highest in Europe and the 4th highest in the world, the report states, and “all of this in a nation that produces comparatively few university graduates.” According to NCEE, 70% of young Swiss people participate in the dual-track approach that combines practical training with part-time classroom instruction: “The system seamlessly connects young people with careers in white-collar and blue-collar jobs through a robust apprenticeship system, keeping youth unemployment rates low.” The unemployment rate for young people in Switzerland is at a low 3%, compared to 12% in the USA and 22% in the EU. According to a recent Time magazine article, the Swiss vocational system is being exported to Britain and to India… and perhaps to the USA, where a university degree is widely seen as the only way to success. When I tell my Swiss friends that I have a diploma in German literature from a top US university, they give me blank looks.

“What can you do with that?” they ask. “Well… it… it… taught me how to learn,” I respond feeling dumb.

My Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) degree once gave me a certain confidence, but deep inside, I now feel they are right. Everything I’ve needed in life and in my careers, I learned in high school and on the job, including summer employments as a landscape gardener and as a newspaper intern. I know people in the USA who are so educated they can’t find work. Some still live at home and refuse to take a menial job to survive. Others are shouldered with immense debt. The expense of going to a top university has doubled since I went: a B.A. degree now costs $200,000. I am not alone in thinking that a university degree is over-rated. Recent articles in major publications are telling stories of today’s most successful entrepreneurs, who either studied at non-Ivy League universities or colleges, dropped out or who never went to college at all. A recent TIME magazine article cautions parents about pushing

kids to be number one, in light of the fact that the rejection rate at Ivy League universities is 94%. It goes on to say that 70% of students consider themselves above average in academic ability, a mathematic impossibility and setting them up for disillusionment. But the word “vocational” gets a bad rap in the USA. Skilled jobs requiring a two-year degree or less are not even considered by most parents, the article states. Why is that? Is it really just about social class and the perception that one cannot be socially considered a member of the middle class without a four-year degree? One commentator on Time.com writes: “To enter a vocational training program is broadly seen socially as an admission one is not, and never will become, a member of the upper middle class. It limits ones social prospects, including marriage ones.” So, I tell my foreign friends who find everything too expensive to revisit their beliefs about quality education and accept the fact that Gstaad is–after all–worth the cost. Diana Oehrli is working on a novel and her blog www.lifeintheswissalps.com.

LAST WORD // GSTAADLIFE // ISSUE 6 // AUGUST 28, 2015

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Events Calendar Friday, 28 August, 2015 to Thursday, 17 September, 2015 Fri, 28 Aug. – 5 Sep. 

Saanenland

Sat, 5 Sep. – 6 Sep.

Schönried

59th Menuhin Festival & Academy

iXS Rookies Cup

Classical concerts with world-famous artists, 11 am

5th annual downhill competition

Fri, 28 Aug. 

Zweisimmen

Gondola Night Dinner Saanen

Exhibition "Divas des Alpages" Isabelle RIchoz at the Heimatwerk Fri, 28 Aug. – 17. Oct.

Saanen

Welt & Gstaad Exhibition Gstaad

Circus Go Annual circus with clowns and more Sat, 29 Aug. – 30 Aug

Gstaad

Dressage Competition Lauenen

Timmermahn Reading in Swiss German, 8 :30 pm Sun, 30 Aug.

Schönried

Swiss Festival

Sat, 5 Sep. Promenade, 9 – 11:30 am Sat, 5 Sep.

Zweisimmen

Cheese Demonstration Sat, 5 Sep.Zweisimmen

Gymnastics Days Daylong games and events Sat, 5 Sep.

Saanen

Jazz at the Grübenberghütte Sun, 6 Sep.

Saanenland

Important Numbers Ambulance 144, Police 117, Fire 118 Medical Emergency 0900 57 67 47 Dental Emergency 033 729 26 26 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 For additional useful numbers please visit www.gstaadlife.ch/useful-­ numbers.html

Gruyère Cyclling Tour Crosses the region Fri, 11 Sep. – 12 Sep.

**** * GRAND HOTEL PARK +41 (0)33 748 98 00, info@grandhotelpark.ch **** * LE GRAND BELLEVUE +41 (0)33 748 00 00, info@bellevue-gstaad.ch **** * THE ALPINA GSTAAD +41 (0)33 888 98 88, info@thealpinagstaad.ch

Lauenen

Gsteig

Photo: Kwest – Fotolia

For further details please visit: www.gstaad.ch

*** * BOUTIQUE HOTEL ALPENROSE +41 (0)33 748 91 91, info@hotelalpenrose.ch *** * GOLFHOTEL LES HAUTS DE GSTAAD +41 (0)33 748 68 68, mail@golfhotel.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 **** HOTEL GSTAADERHOF: +41 (0)33 748 63 63, info@gstaaderhof.ch **** HOTEL OLDEN +41 (0)33 748 49 50, info@hotelolden.com **** ROMANTIK HOTEL HORNBERG +41 (0)33 748 66 88, willkommen@hotel-hornberg.ch

Gstaad

Clubs

Country Night Gstaad

  

Every Wednesday, 8:30  am

**** * GSTAAD PALACE +41 (0)33 748 50 00, info@palace.ch

***** ERMITAGE, WELLNESS & SPA HOTEL +41 (0)33 748 04 30, welcome@ermitage.ch

Alp Blatti, 11am 

Alpine Dairy Tour

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

Kids Flea Market

Alpine Festival Wed, 2 Sep. – 16 Sep.

English-Speaking, Château-d’Oex Service every Sunday, 17.30 pm

Gstaad

Western bands, music, food, and much more at the Sportzentrum tent.

On the Rellerli, 10 am Sun, 30 Aug.

Gstaad Züglete

Thomas Möckel, 8 pm

Second annual event Sat, 29 Aug.

Gstaad

"Käseteilet", 10 am

Photographs by Jacques Naegeli Fri, 28 Aug. - 30 Aug.

St Peter’s Anglican Church

Farmers descend the Alps with cows

Exclusive dinner, 6:15 pm Fri, 28 Aug. – 19 Sep.

Sat, 5 Sep.

Church Services

Gstaadlife is available in these Hotels

Rotary Club Gstaad-Saanenland Meetings every Monday 12h00 Palace Hotel Gstaad (033 / 748 50 00), President: Rot. Christiane Griessen (079 / 432 73 93) Secretary: Rot. Markus Iseli (033 / 748 92 08)

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 Sigi Feller, president, 033 748 85 73, sigbert.feller@ubs.com gstaad-saanenland.lionsclub.ch

Soroptimist International President: Heidi Gafner-Kiser Tel. 033 748 83 15 Program: Stephanie Iseli Tel. 033 744 18 33

HOTEL DE ROUGEMONT Member of Design HotelsTM +41 (0)26 921 01 01, info@hotelderougemont.com **** STEIGENBERGER ALPENHOTEL AND SPA +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@alphorn-gstaad.ch *** HOTEL ERMITAGE +41 (0)26 924 25 00, info@hotelermitage.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

Classifieds in GSTAADLIFE Place your classified ad here for CHF 17.– per line (plus CHF 20.– for the highlight box). Contact us at eliane.behrend@mmedien.ch.

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EVENTS // GSTAADLIFE // ISSUE 6 // AUGUST 28, 2015

*** SPORTHOTEL VICTORIA +41 (0)33 748 44 22, info@victoria-gstaad.ch HOTEL RESTAURANT BÄREN +41 (0)33 755 10 33, welcome@baerengsteig.ch HOTEL GELTENHORN +41 (0)33 765 35 91, brand@hotel-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


SWA Security GmbH Po box 329, 3700 Spiez

Phone +41 (0) 33 535 99 30 I Mobile +41 (0) 78 835 36 32 E-mail info@swa-security.ch

Security is all about trust and requirements

www.swa-security.ch

Le Beau Séjour – Château-d’Oex Gstaad Valley

SA ANENL AND C ALENDARS 2016

WORK IN PROGRESS

DELIVERY SUMMER 2016

New opportunity to live comfortably in the heart of the village without nuisances and close to all the conveniences 2,5 to 6.5 rooms appartments balconies and terraces for each 360° view 2 lifts in the building underground parking garden cellars – ski room Restaurant, Spa and indoor pool in the building (those facilities are not included within the coproperty charges)

Order now online at www.kalendersaanenland.ch

Our offices are open 6/7 days CF IMMOBILIER COMPAGNIE FONCIERE SA Rue du Village 40 – 1659 Rougemont T +41 26 925 10 00 – info@cfimmobilier.ch www.cfimmobilier.ch

Müller Medien AG Kirchstrasse 6 3780 Gstaad Tel. 033 748 88 74 Fax 033 748 88 84 info@mmedien.ch

Ref. 4D From CHF 680’000.– .

GSTAADLIFE // ISSUE 6 // AUGUST 28, 2015

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Profile for Müller Medien

GstaadLife, 28.8.15  

The exclusive monthly publication about the good life in Gstaad.

GstaadLife, 28.8.15  

The exclusive monthly publication about the good life in Gstaad.

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