6 days in paradise

A stay at The Palace Luzern and Victoria Jungfrau Grand Hotel—two of the most luxurious hotels in Switzerland—is nothing but divine

The Palace Luzern

For me, it was love at first sight. We stayed at The Palace Luzern, part of the Victoria-Jungfrau Collection, for the first three days of our honeymoon in Switzerland and before long, Lucerne had become my favourite city in the scenic country—my newfound love.

A warm welcome

It was unexpectedly cold for first week of May; even the locals were wearing winter clothes. We were ill-prepared for this weather and, naturally, were freezing. But as we arrived at the hotel, the warm welcome by the friendly hotel staff gave us made us feel cosy and at home. During our stay, we discovered that the hotel is a haven of hospitality. It combines an old-world charm with ultra-modern comforts.

Room with a view

Our room was a junior suite. But there was nothing junior about it—a sprawling room, it was tastefully done up in brown and purple, and equipped with latest amenities. We also had our own little balcony with a table for two—ideal for a romantic stay-at-home, candle-lit dinner. With a breathtaking view of the Lake Lucerne [which is the fourth largest lake in the country] and the snow-covered Alps, the location of the hotel was almost surreal—no wonder I fell for Lucerne.

Gourmet delight

When it came to eating pleasures, The Palace Luzern lived up to its reputation and our expectations. Breakfast at the Les Artistes restaurant offered both national and regional cuisine and gave a perfect start to a fun-filled day. And if our taste buds craved something that was not on the menu, the staff was enthusiastic about preparing it especially for us—they just don’t let anyone go unsatisfied.

Dinner at their exclusive Jasper restaurant was an evening to remember. This classy restaurant had an aura that instantly sets your spirits soaring. To tell you the truth, I got the feeling that the staff at Jasper, The Palace bar or the Les Artistes were competing for the title of the “most warm and efficient host”.

If I were to pick the highlight of my stay at this royal hotel, it would be a difficult choice as every experience superseded the other.

The Victoria Jungfrau Grand Hotel & Spa

From Palace Luzern, we moved to Victoria-Jungfrau Grand Hotel at Interlaken Ost where we stayed for the next three days. The experience at the Victoria-Jungfrau was different. Here, it was not the staff or the restaurants that thrilled us, but the exotic spas and the mesmerising view of the towering trio of Eiger, Mönch and Jungfrau from our room.

Indulgence unlimited

The scenic beauty of Switzerland is in itself adequate for relaxation. Combine it with some exotic beauty and wellness treatments and you have the ultimate recipe for indulgence.

The SENSAI SELECT SPA is the most elegantly designed spa I have visited. The décor calms your nerves even before the treatment begins. Treatments at this spa are based on traditional Japanese techniques combined with the most advanced skin research. I opted for a facial treatment called the “silk celebration for the face [express]”. It began with a silk footbath, which involved the therapist soaking my feet in some mineral-enriched water to calm my senses and accentuate the result of the facial that was to follow. The 50-minute customised facial was an experience in itself and is ideal for those times when time is a constraint. No wonder it’s called “express”.

So soothing

Manoj, my husband, opted for a full-body aromatherapy massage at the highly sophisticated ESPA, which had multiple treatment rooms, steam and sauna, lifestyle showers and a relaxation area. Treatments here are inspired by ancient oriental therapies combined with modern western techniques, promising to revitalise the mind, body and soul.

From my partner’s account, the promise is not empty—the massage he received was the most relaxing he’s ever experienced [and being a Spa connoisseur, he’s experienced many]. It soothed him so deeply, that for the first time in his life, he fell asleep during a spa treatment. Now, that says a lot about ESPA.

Making the most of our stay at the Victoria-Jungfrau, we also used the steam, sauna, Jacuzzi and pool facilities… by the time we left Interlaken, we felt thoroughly rejuvenated.

This was first published in the September 2010 issue of Complete Wellbeing.

Grazilia Almeida-Khatri
Trained as a physician, Dr Grazilia Almeida-Khatri is a wellness coach and consultant. She endorses yoga as a way of life and conducts wellness and yoga retreats for individuals and corporates. She is also trained in Pilates by Michael King, who is based in the UK. Dr Grazilia is a practitioner of the Body Mirror System of healing as taught by Sir Martin Brofman. She lives in Pune, India and offers consultations in person and online.


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