Perhaps you equate romantic Swiss getaways with cozy ski chalets, but consider these elegant and atmospheric Zurich hotels. They may be set in a lower altitude, but they’re high in glamour and grandeur. Plus, their Old Town and Lake Zurich locations mean easy access to the city’s famous concert halls, clubs, restaurants, beer gardens, and sights, like the Limmat River, lakefront promenade, and Bahnhofstrasse — one of the most exclusive shopping streets in the world. See the most romantic hotels in Zurich.
One of Zurich's most impressive historic hotels (and possibly one of Switzerland's most impressive historic hotels), the Widder is a luxury property in buildings that back to the 12th century. Interior design features a superb blend of period and modern features both in rooms and common areas. The 49 uniquely designed rooms come with high-end stereo systems, Bang & Olufsen TVs, and marble bathrooms with robes and slippers. Free mineral water and fresh fruit are replaced daily. The Widder lacks a spa or fitness center, but does have a pleasant terrace for al fresco eating and drinking, a fine-dining restaurant, and an attractive bar with 250 single malt whiskies and regular live jazz performances. The hotel's prime location in the swanky central district is ideal for sightseeing.
The luxurious, 120-room Baur au Lac dates back to 1844; since then, six generations of the same family have owned and run this landmark Zurich hotel. Considered one of the best hotels in Europe, the Baur au Lac is set in beautiful gardens on the edge of Lake Zurich, just off Zurich’s famous luxury shopping street, Bahnhofstrasse. Its guest rooms and suites are large, especially for European standards. Each category of guest room is decorated in a different color scheme and one of three design styles: classic Empire, elegant Regency, or streamlined Art Deco. All rooms offer small indulgences like pillow menus, free minibars, the hotel’s own brand of bathroom toiletries, and fresh flower arrangements. Deluxe Suites have additional luxuries like marble bathrooms, Bose sound systems, and scenic views of the lake or mountains. Not surprisingly, room rates are some of the highest in the city, but the hotel lacks certain facilities commonly found in luxury properties, like a pool or spa. There are three restaurants, though -- one of which, Pavillon, is a Zurich fine-dining destination in itself with a Michelin star.
The upscale Storchen Zurich is a one of a kind. It's the only hotel set right on Zurich's Limmat River, and at its narrowest point (it also lays claim to being the oldest hotel in Zurich, with origins going back to the mid-14th century). The exclusive riverfront setting means plenty of lovely waterway views from restaurant terraces and many of the rooms. There are 66 rooms and suites, all of which are bright and traditional with blue-and-white toile fabric, wooden furnishings, and carpeted floors. Amenities include bathrobes and slippers, 48-inch smart TVs with satellite channels, and minibars (suites add espresso machines). Fruit and mineral water are replenished daily. The atmospheric restaurant offers five-course dinners next to an open fire, while Barchetta serves light meals right on the riverbank. There's also a snug bar with stained-glass mullioned windows and regular live piano music.
This luxury financial district hotel's clientele includes many higher-end business guests, but also a spattering of well-heeled tourists and couples splashing out for a special occasion. The 142 refined rooms are some of the city's most spacious; they have beds are topped with Italian linen and hypo-allergenic pillows, high-end amenities (Nespresso machines, Bang & Olufsen TVs with satellite channels), and especially good soundproofing. Marble bathrooms come with fluffy bathrobes, Grohe rainfall showers, and separate soaking tubs. Other nice touches include daily fruit baskets, fresh flowers, and free mineral water. The Park Hyatt certainly excels with its eating and drinking options. The Parkhuus restaurant has floor-to-ceiling windows and an open show kitchen, while the attractive Onyx Bar is popular with locals and gets lively on weekends. There's also a two-floor wine library with a collection of more than 3,000 wines. The on-site spa and health club is equipped with a modern gym, separate men's and women's areas with saunas and steam baths, and treatment rooms.
This hip, boldly redesigned hotel occupies three 19th-century industrial buildings that were once part of the Hurlimann Brewery (Switzerland's largest, at one time). The entire complex blends original 1880 details with sharp contemporary style. The 60 chic rooms feature oak floors and amenities like flat-screen TVs, Nespresso machines, and free (non-alcoholic) minibars. The bathrooms are open to the rest of the room and have heated mosaic-tile floors and open rainfall showers partitioned by glass walls. Hotel guests get a discount rate at the Thermal Baths & Spa Zurich, which is in the same building complex. It has a beautiful rooftop infinity pool and a decadent spa with thermal baths and wooden hot tubs. The Wine Library serves free breakfast, then lunch and dinner. There's also an extensive wine menu with local options.
Located close to Lake Zurich, this upscale family-run hotel has an elegant atmosphere and provides a refreshing alternative to chain hotels. The 39 rooms are decorated in a romantic style, and come with flat-screen TVs and free Wi-Fi -- some have balconies. But they can be small, especially the Singles. Breakfast is included for guests who book directly through the hotel, and the classy on-site restaurant serves French cuisine, with 24-hour room service. The adjacent whiskey bar has an amazing selection, with more than 300 varieties. But the hotel lacks a pool and fitness center.
The Ambassador a l’Opera is an upscale, boutique property across the street from the Opera House and just a block from Lake Zurich. The vibe and general decor is traditional and elegant, if a bit staid (especially in the rooms, which can be small). In-room amenities are ample, with luxury touches including adjustable beds and a pillow menu. The on-site restaurant is also outstanding and views from the rooftop terrace are lovely. This all comes at a premium price tag -- not surprising for one of the city's best upscale hotels.
Styled after an old English townhouse with a contemporary twist, this chic, casual hotel is in the middle of Zurich's most posh shopping area. As a tiny boutique hotel in the center of Zurich's Old Town, features are predictably limited: A ground-floor Mediterranean restaurant has a hip dining room and bar and a streetside patio. A fifth-floor lounge has an honor bar, self-serve espresso machine, books, chess, and a small adjacent outdoor terrace. The hotel's 25 rooms mix classic wood furniture with English decor and vintage-style Designers Guild wallpaper. Most of the rooms have small balconies with either street or courtyard views, and all have flat-screen TVs, Samsung tablets, iPod docks, and free Wi-Fi.