Time slows in Vitznau, as the sun begins to set over Lake Lucerne (der Vierwaldstädtersee). Our host for dinner turns positively misty-eyed as we watch the sun dips behind clouds and mountains across the lake. Sunset is the big event here, he tells us, and each one is unique. After just two evenings here, Tom and I agree that it is a show worth watching.
We felt at home even before we arrived at Hotel Terrasse am See, when Pia and Roland Scherrer-Nussbaumer wrote to us, asking about our interests and offering ideas for exploring Mount Rigi. These hotel owners are happy to share their passion for the hotel and Swiss history with their guests. Their personal attention throughout our stay just added to our enjoyment.
A valley station getaway
The Hotel Terrasse am See is spectacularly situated, and dates from the earliest days of railway service to Mount Rigi. Built in 1873 as the Hotel Pension Rigi-Bahn, the hotel has weathered several incarnations and name changes. The latest, Hotel Terrasse am See , is a perfect fit!
Restored with love & attention to detail
Owners Pia and Roland Scherrer-Nussbaumer have lovingly restored the hotel over the last several years, adding period pieces to the interior, and making sure creature comforts are there, as well. The result is a hotel filled with warmth, character and atmosphere.
Dinner with a view
The care Pia and Roland have lavished on the hotel extends to personal services, and a memorable dinner-with-a-view. We were impressed that they source as many culinary ingredients as possible from local producers: beef, cheese and fresh lake fish, to name just three.
For us, dinner and wine came with an added bonus: the story behind every dish, and each glass of Swiss wine. Wine from fortress cellars beneath the Gotthard, a port that is not called port, and a lively apertif wine from the Papal enclave of Appenzeller Innerhoden all found their way into our glasses. All 26 Swiss cantons are represented on the wine list at Hotel Terrasse –and thanks to Roland, they were perfectly paired with every course of our delicious meals, from starter through soup and main course to dessert.
If you go
From its early days as a railway hotel, the aim has always been to offer visitors to the Rigi an ideally situated place to dine and spend the night. Hotel Terrasse am See offers much more than that.
The hotel is a splendid base for exploring the Rigi, the ‘Queen of the Mountains’, and the options are many. The hotel is well located for a two-hour walking circuit of Vitznau and the hills just above town, or from any of the Rigi-Bahn stations along the line.
A Swiss Historic Hotel
Hotel Terrasse am See has been a member of Swiss Historic Hotels since 2008. With an incomparable location, and hosts who treat their guests as friends, the hotel truly offers a ‘home away from home’, whether for a meal, a special event, or an extended stay.
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