24 Hours at the Bellevue Palace, Bern
Imagine the capital of Switzerland and imagine a hotel that is literally inside the governmental area - well it's called the Swiss "Bund" and Bern is one of the smaller capitals within Europe, so don't expect a range of branded luxury hotels. In fact all important people and politicians stay and dine at the Bellevue Palace. Location has always been an important factor for hotels, but I have to admit that this hotel is situated on the number one spot in Bern, visible from everywhere and offering views of everything. Normally there is nothing more to write about than it's a perfect Swiss Grand Hotel like you can only still find it in movies, e.g. The Grand Budapest Hotel. While I'm writing about the Bellevue Palace in Bern, I begin to face the similarities this hotel has with the previously mentioned movie. There is even a cable car from lower Bern to the upper part of the town and the governmental area.
Despite the amazing location, it was super easy to get to the hotel - I don't remember that I had to turn when I exited the highway until I arrived at the impressive entrance of the Bellevue Palace. As soon as I stopped the car, I spotted the bellmen handling with other guests who just arrived as well. Before I could even think of getting a less perfect welcome, a lady from the front desk stood already next to me and took care of the luggage and the car, before she accompanied me to the lobby. Once I arrived there, I was greeted by last name (the lady outside the hotel informed them about my name and from then one everybody knew who I was!!). I was offered a glass of San Pellegrino, had to sign a paper and was already inside the elevator on the way to my room. As soon as the kind lady from the front desk opened the door which already stated "Suite", I began to be even more impressed.
The suite offered of a huge living room with a writing desk and access to a balcony was located next to the spacious bedroom with another balcony, a super big king size bed and lots of wardrobe space. The bathroom was very spacious with lots of light, tough only a shower-tub combo and although they only offer 30ml Molton Brown toiletries they provided two sets which was also a nice touch. While I very much appreciated the two towels per person plus lots of smaller ones next to the vanity desk and the fact that there is a separated toilet, I missed the comb and dental kit. I am sure they would have had some upon calling but I always like to have a comb on site and prefer not to call the housekeeping for that.
Before I experienced the highlight of the hotel, the Restaurant Vue, I headed to the fitness centre without any expectations. Although I knew they have TechnoGym, I did not expect to find such a cool gym and sauna. It was a real fun to do the work-out there and even managed to see it after breakfast the next morning. Once having done something for the wellbeing I was ready to be treated by the chef of the Restaurant. I experienced a perfect service by the Food & Beverage manager himself and once he left, his assistant was taking extremely good care of me. I had an interpretation of truffled scrambled eggs with brioche and afterwards the signature dish: The Vue Burger. It was extremely wonderful with truffle everywhere - from truffled mashed potatoes to the truffled mayonnaise and slices of black truffle on top of the meat. I really loved the complete dinner and before I could even leave for a super Gin Tonic at the bar, I was served one of the best apple cake creations I have ever had. At this point, I would like to point out the amazing wine pairing which only consisted of Swiss Wines - a first time for me and I was amazed.
All in all I would recommend this hotel for every business traveler needing to go to Bern as well as every leisure traveler coming to the amazing and lovely city of Bern - it is really worth a trip. I spent a night from Saturday to Sunday there and was absolutely not annoyed as there is so much to see and finally Bern is a great place to go shopping. Anyhow the Bellevue Palace is one of the best Swiss hotels I have ever stayed at and really comes up to the highest expectations and its reputation. What impressed me most? That the General Manager was greeting each guest at breakfast personally (breakfast was extremely good as well and the setting impressive again) and added a few minutes to have a chat about the stay and the reason for the trip. This is something I never saw at a city hotel and entitles the Bellevue Palace to 10 out of 10 Points in terms of service.
I was a guest of the Victoria-Jungfrau Collection, however all above written expresses my own opinion and has not been influenced.