Luxury Hotels

Geneva – Zurich – Maldives – Mike Batt and the world

Geneva’s next luxury hotel will be the Oetker-managed 26-key all-suite Woodrow, a 1901 building on the shore of Lake Geneva (after opening 1901 as Hotel Bellevue it was then a bank). Now, redesigned by Pierre-Yves Rochon with all food from Robuchon, a 21-metre indoor pool and a Guerlain spa, the hotel is ready-to-roll. Prime mover behind this magical transformation is Bastion Management’s ceo Christophe Aldunate, an obviously versatile gentleman worked in the past at Cannes’ Martinez before moving east to Hyatt’s Palais de la Mediterranée in Nice. His many current hats include heading C Koya Development, Invest Hospitality, part of Crest Hospitality, which owns 11 restaurants in USA, a Geneva chocolatier, and Sunseeker’s Isle of Man-registered largest yacht, also Rochon.

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Swiss news comes in thick and fast. Three hours after Oetker Collection announced the above, Mandarin Oriental announced what will be their third hotel there, joining Mandarin Oriental Geneva, formerly Hôtel du Rhône, by Georg Rafael, and Mandarin Oriental Lucerne, formerly the Palace, part of the Victoria-Jungfrau Collection. Now MOHG will take over management of the 1838-vintage Savoy Baur en Ville, in the centre of Zurich. Credit Suisse Group will close the hotel in 2022 and it will re-open two years later as an 80-key beauty, designed by Tristan Auer (at the moment, by the way, the hotel offers 65% reduction for the over-65s).

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Looking ahead, you have until 30th November to book a long stay at Anantara Veli Maldives. Any time during 2021 you can move in, for as long as you like, via its Unlimited Stays in Paradise deal. Girlahead would, if she could, simply relocate there for the whole year. For a one-off payment of $30,000, including taxes and service, you get an overwater villa with free breakfast, and 25% off other food and drinks, and spa. When you need to go to Male for shopping or any other reason, transfers are complimentary.

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And do not forget, says Girlahead, that wherever you stay, do make sure it is safe, from the pandemic and all that means.  Thank goodness for the global stay-safe verification being set up by Jeff Arnold, Chairman of Forbes Travel Guide, and its CEO Filip Boyen. Such other admirable parties as Hermann Elger, President of Sharecare, and Michael Batt, Founding Chairman of Internova, are also key. Hear Batt now, on MARY GOSTELOW GIRLAHEAD PODCAST