Couture Developments – Swiss Through And Through By Rosalind Milani Gallieni
Buy into spaces of tranquility and peace of mind, true to standards of Swiss excellence, with Kempinski’s new apartments.
A sunny terrace opens out onto the most extensive mountain range, still snow-capped in mid April, and Lake Geneva lies below, absolutely tranquil blue and secure in its world-renowned beauty, and now we are in the reality of it – we have arrived to the swooshing Swiss efficiency of Le Mirador Kempinski, the service-hotel, no less, to the nearby Du Parc Kempinski residential development. Having had its scaffolding and tarpaulins removed the day before our arrival, handover dates are becoming a reality after years of construction!
Jean-François Garneau, CEO of Swiss Development Group, joins an informal lunch, and discusses the opportunistic venture which he, as a developer, had the vision to construct, connecting Le Mirador Kempinski to the 24 private apartments a few minutes walk up the hill. The apartments will all have the ‘de rigeur’ lake-view, and range from 2 to 6 bedrooms, starting from 6M CHF. Each one is self-sufficient and fully-serviced by the world-renowned 5* hotel group Kempinski, with 14 dedicated staff on hand 24/7 to cater for all needs coming from the hi-tech residences. Owners naturally also have special rates for the restaurants at Le Mirador nearby, making the hotel a pure added value for the homes away from home.
The two are hence integrated and work as one from an operational side, making this the first branded private hotel-residence for sale in Switzerland, providing excellence and dedication to the highest standards of personal service.
With over 60% sold, the 22 apartments will be handed over to the über-rich in the summer, allowing them to experience Lake Geneva, the quaint Swiss mountain roads and the wine producers’ villages which surround the hillside. The last remaining structure to be completed is the formidable penthouse, which Candy & Candy will take on, to push their design-boundaries and high-tech systems that bit further in this, their first project in Switzerland.
Despite all the ground-breaking technological systems, computer-run domestic appliances and remote-controlled operations inside the building, a huge respect has been paid to the elegance of the original Belle Époque-inspired building, located in a UNESCO World Heritage site at the heart of the Vaud Riviera, on Mont-Pélérin. The original architecture has been retained both inside (to maintain the period architecture in the communal areas) and outside (to keep the exterior in line with the original 140-room Hotel du Parc, dating back to 1907). The imposing building was also once upon a time the meeting place of the private Mont Pèlerin Society, which counted 7 Nobel Prize winners, who regularly met in this majestic location.
Walking around these new, design-led interiors, with our hard hats still on, we realise we are in homes of exquisite, bespoke standards, and which only few people of this world will ever see, and rightly, as Jean-François points out: “These homes are not the Prêt-à-Porter of construction, but instead they reflect of a level of thought, detail and attention, more in line with Couture.” If this is the first of his branded hotel-residences, then this might be the beginning of a new system of real-estate development….rather like seeing the changes Charles F. Worth brought in when he invented Couture.
The Du Parc Kempinski will have its own private Givenchy Spa treatment room in the building, but residents can naturally also enjoy the Givenchy Spa at Le Mirador Kempinski. This Spa is one of six in the world, and the centre offers state-of-the-art fitness and a medical centre specialising in tailor-made preventative programs, which are readily available to all residents. Both spas hum with the same Swiss efficiency. The spaces are extensive, and offer the most exquisite private day-spa suite, where couples can spend a day in lush decadence, enjoying naturally-lit spaces, steam rooms, saunas, massage beds and a double-sized jacuzzi tub overlooking the Swiss mountain ranges.
The next project for customers to check into in 2015 will be 51° Spa Residences in Leukerbad, Valais, offering over 200 different treatments, with Kempinski again the hotel operator.
The location celebrates the thermal waters, which interplay with the apartments, giving an ecologically beautiful setting, and a whole new spa experience for the 21st century. The term Spa has been completely over-hauled here, with the introduction of the fundamentals of Japanese detoxification and purification, mixing the sauna, hot tub and spa. As Jean-François explains: ” I divided the spaces into several Banyan suites, to create hollistic and non-clinical treatments, and all the spaces are self- enclosed. Given the location, we make maximum use of the thermal waters, bringing them into the service. In essence, we have created a fusion of the Russian Banya steam bath with the Swiss Alpine Bath-house, designed by Under A Tree Spa Consultant, Amy McDonald.”