Zurich wakes up, it’s a spring day. The sides of the lake are calm, the canopy of the trees sways, a morning breeze ruffles them. An elegant car drives into the hotel courtyard. Like every day, Andrea, who lives just out of town, reaches his workplace. He parks, gets out of the car and straightens up his well-cut blue jacket. A gardener greets him with a smile. It’s 8 o’clock on the dot. Andrea takes a deep breath and looks at what stands before his eyes: the grand door, the portico, the elegant windows, the striped curtains and the balconies in bloom. He feels a wise, conscious sense of gratitude. This place is his home, his life, his family.
This is the hotel Baur Au Lac, a mythical, unique, precious chest of memories and innovation. This hotel belongs to him and to all the people who have visited it and will continue to do so.
The hotel, built in 1844 by his ancestors, near the lake and with a view of the Alps, has always been run by Andrea’s family, of which he represents the 6th generation. Just like those who once spent their holidays here –the emperors and princesses, the unforgettable Sissi, musicians, intellectuals, entrepreneurs, Alfred Nobel, who had his idea of creating his famous prize here, encouraged by the charismatic pacifist Baroness Bertha Von Suttner, and well-known artists– today art collectors, heads of state, designers, international film and music stars, members of royal families now stay here. A pleasant dizziness overcomes him.
Responsibility blends in with happiness. Little has changed, but at the same time everything has, Andrea thinks. He has had the courage to renovate the entire building, to face the future. To avoid turning it into a museum. The luxurious and refined atmosphere has remained the same. And he likes this. If his daughter should ever want to take his place, continuing the family tradition, she too will have to play a game of balance with time: to mantain the highest quality, preserve this place and accompany it into modernity. Like an age-old tree, that has firm roots and fresh shoots.
Inside the hall there is a unique scent, for the guests of the hotel it’s like a favourite tune.