Stay the night: Matterhorn Focus, Zermatt

As a member of one of the farming families who owned Zermatt in the pre-tourist era, architect-designer Heinz Julen had all the right connections to make an impact on his ultra-conservative home town. The Matterhorn Focus is the latest showcase for his cutting-edge vision. The hotel, which opened last summer, stands just above the Matterhorn Express gondola, the centre of the Zermatt lift system. It is also just a 15-minute walk from the village centre.



The rooms

Glass walls maximise views, with 20 of the 30 rooms facing the mountain, pictured, and the remainder overlooking Zermatt. The oak floors are heated and there's slate in the bathrooms. The cupboards are glass-fronted but the minimalist style is softened by ostrich-plumed bedside lights, comfortable sofas and pony-skin chairs. There are seven suites named for local peaks. Many rooms have spacious balconies or terraces.



The food and drink

The owners, Chris and Sonia Noti, have two small children so they decided only to offer breakfast in their opening year. The buffet breakfast is served in the atrium dining area under contemporary metal chandeliers and lamps hung with sparkling chains. Drinks are available throughout the day at the integrated bar or in two side rooms, one a library with pony-skin seats, the other a snug with a roaring wood fire.



The extras

The wellness centre is a major feature. It has a curvy swimming pool overlooked by the bar area and a tunnel to the terrace whirlpool. Robed guests lounge on wide wooden sofas or take advantage of a range of treatments.



The access

All visitors enter via a tunnel and a lift, excellent for wheelchair users, though risky for all in the event of a power cut – presumably rare in Switzerland. Two of the rooms have showers and toilets adapted for guests with disabilities. The lifts have raised script for the different floors to orient the partially sighted.



The bill

B&B in a double costs £150 per night in January.



The address

Hotel Matterhorn Focus, Winkelmattenweg 32, CH 3920 Zermatt (00 41 27 966 2424, www.matterhornfocus.ch).

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Travel
ebookHow to enjoy the perfect short break in 20 great cities
Independent Travel Videos
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in Amsterdam
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in Giverny
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in St John's
Independent Travel Videos
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Travel

    Guru Careers: Dining Room Head Chef

    £32K: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Dining Room Head Chef to work for one of ...

    Guru Careers: Pastry Sous Chef / Experienced Pastry Chef

    £27K: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Pastry Sous Chef / Experienced Pastry Che...

    Ashdown Group: Technical IT Manager - North London - Growing business

    £40000 - £50000 per annum: Ashdown Group: A growing business that has been ope...

    Recruitment Genius: Technical Supervisor

    £24800 - £29000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: As one of London's leading Muse...

    Day In a Page

    General Election 2015: ‘We will not sit down with Nicola Sturgeon’, says Ed Balls

    'We will not sit down with Nicola Sturgeon'

    In an exclusive interview, Ed Balls says he won't negotiate his first Budget with SNP MPs - even if Labour need their votes to secure its passage
    13 best picnic blankets

    13 best picnic blankets

    Dine al fresco without the grass stains and damp bottoms with something from our pick of picnic rugs
    General Election 2015: Ed Miliband's unlikely journey from hapless geek to heart-throb

    Miliband's unlikely journey from hapless geek to heart-throb

    He was meant to be Labour's biggest handicap - but has become almost an asset
    General Election 2015: A guide to the smaller parties, from the the National Health Action Party to the Church of the Militant Elvis Party

    On the margins

    From Militant Elvis to Women's Equality: a guide to the underdogs standing in the election
    Amr Darrag: Ex-Muslim Brotherhood minister in exile still believes Egypt's military regime can be replaced with 'moderate' Islamic rule

    'This is the battle of young Egypt for the future of our country'

    Ex-Muslim Brotherhood minister Amr Darrag still believes the opposition can rid Egypt of its military regime and replace it with 'moderate' Islamic rule, he tells Robert Fisk
    Why patients must rely less on doctors: Improving our own health is the 'blockbuster drug of the century'

    Why patients must rely less on doctors

    Improving our own health is the 'blockbuster drug of the century'
    Sarah Lucas is the perfect artist to represent Britain at the Venice Biennale

    Flesh in Venice

    Sarah Lucas has filled the British pavilion at the Venice Biennale with slinky cats and casts of her female friends' private parts. It makes you proud to be a woman, says Karen Wright
    11 best anti-ageing day creams

    11 best anti-ageing day creams

    Slow down the ageing process with one of these high-performance, hardworking anti-agers
    Juventus 2 Real Madrid 1: Five things we learnt, including Iker Casillas is past it and Carlos Tevez remains effective

    Juventus vs Real Madrid

    Five things we learnt from the Italian's Champions League first leg win over the Spanish giants
    Ashes 2015: Test series looks a lost cause for England... whoever takes over as ECB director of cricket

    Ashes series looks a lost cause for England...

    Whoever takes over as ECB director of cricket, says Stephen Brenkley
    Fishing for votes with Nigel Farage: The Ukip leader shows how he can work an audience as he casts his line to the disaffected of Grimsby

    Fishing is on Nigel Farage's mind

    Ukip leader casts a line to the disaffected
    Who is bombing whom in the Middle East? It's amazing they don't all hit each other

    Who is bombing whom in the Middle East?

    Robert Fisk untangles the countries and factions
    China's influence on fashion: At the top of the game both creatively and commercially

    China's influence on fashion

    At the top of the game both creatively and commercially
    Lord O’Donnell: Former cabinet secretary on the election and life away from the levers of power

    The man known as GOD has a reputation for getting the job done

    Lord O'Donnell's three principles of rule
    Rainbow shades: It's all bright on the night

    Rainbow shades

    It's all bright on the night