CERVO, Zermatt – understated authentic Swiss Alpine luxury
CERVO Mountain Boutique Resort in the legendary ski town of Zermatt redefines authentic luxury Swiss hospitality with a contemporary and inherently understated identity. While guests can ski right up to the entrance, the resort has been conceived by young hoteliers Daniel and Seraina to be much more than a ski oriented resort. Its two restaurants, bar and outdoor terrace overlooking the Matterhorn have firmly positioned CERVO as a lifestyle destination for non-residence seeking an exceptional luxury experience, both in service and quality of offerings.
Daniel Lauber wanted to be an hotelier since childhood. After studying at the Swiss Hotel Management School Lucerne, and training at international five-stars in both the United States and Switzerland, he broke ground in 2009 with CERVO Mountain Boutique Resort—his family-owned ski chalet that he converted into a 35-room hotel with his wife and chef Seraina. Nowadays, although he seems forever present, Daniel manages a team he built around personalized and attentive service. The passion to be part of Cervo’s team and witnessing high levels of customer satisfaction are the key drivers behind the performance of the very young team.
Local materials like felt, loden, and stone converge with vintage curios in the main building, a converted 1950s chalet that still has its original wooden floor. A predominantly hunting theme is omnipresent throughout the interior design concept of the entire resort. The curved, stylized antlers of a deer appear sporadically throughout the complex (‘cervo’ in Italian means deer).
The second restaurant of the resort, Ferdinand, launched recently, is defined by Alpine casual dining – raclette, fondue and BBQ. The atmosphere is hip, Ferdinand offering a taste of the cosmopolitan life in Zermatt. All products at Ferdinand are local, sourced either from the Valais region or elsewhere in Switzerland. I was impressed not only by the quality of dishes but also by the friendly, efficient and very intuitive service with a homey feel.
My room, the Deluxe Spa Suite, probably has the most spectacular mountain views, with a lavish terrace, a strategically placed jacuzzi providing the ideal romantic or relaxation spot. The bathroom also featured a state-of-the-art Spa shower which could also turn into a steam-bath. The sweeping panoramic views were blissful admired from the hand-made King Size, Hästens bed, probably one of the most comfortable beds I have slept in my recent travels. Other important details: Molton Brown amenities with a candle in each room, working fireplace in all suites, complimentary mini-bar, complimentary high-speed wi-fi internet throughout the entire resort.
For my first visit to Zermatt, I must admit I was truly surprised by the overall laid-back feel of the town and the lack of the overt luxury, which some of the other famed Swiss resorts rely on. The ”show off”’ factor driven by luxury shopping (major international brands) and fancy F&B outlets are replaced in Zermatt by family-owned Swiss food & beverage outlets and retail stores, mostly with ski equipment. The only well represented luxury retail segment in Zermatt is watches, with all major Swiss luxury brands represented, including a Patek Phillippe mono-brand corner. Zermatt is certainly for those seeking privacy and lack of show-off.
Oliver Petcu in Zermatt