Opened in 1865, the iconic Beau Rivage Geneve Hotel has since been owned by the Mayer family, nowadays in its fifth generation. Following 4 years of extensive renovations closely overseen by Mr. Alexandre Nickbarte-Mayer. Upon completion of the renovations of the majority of rooms and all the suites, the family took a major decision to appoint Lars Wagner, a highly experienced luxury hotelier, to run the hotel in a newly created General Manager role.
The decision is the more significant considering that Wagner does not come, as many would have expected, from an independent luxury hotel but instead, with a background of executive positions with major international luxury hotel groups, most recently having served as General Manager of Mandarin Oriental, Geneva.
With probably one of the best locations in Geneva, right on the shores of the Geneva Lake, on the prestigious Quai du Mont-Blanc, flanked by Geneva’s finest luxury hotels, the Beau Rivage Geneva boast breathtaking picture-perfect panoramic lake and city views with the Mont Blanc in the distance. The hotel is within walking distance from all major attractions of the city, including walking distance from Geneva’s leading luxury shopping street of Rue du Rhone.
The atrium of the hotel, which crowns the cozy lobby lends a majestic feel, with a unique WOW factor for all those who walk into the hotel for the first time. The centrepiece of the hotel leads to the exquisite Le Bar, still frequented by local patrons as well as hotel guests. In 2001, during the renovation of Le Bar, Pompeii-styled frescoes were discovered. The Bar offers an ideal haven in a calm, intimate ambience, a real retreat from the hum of the city with a live piano in the late afternoon / evenings. One of the highlights of the Le Bar is the Afternoon Tea with sophisticated homemade cakes and a unique
The Michelin-starred restaurant of the hotel, Le Chat Botté, headed by immensely talented and creative Chef Dominique Gauthier. Besides the one Michelin star rating, the restaurant also holds 18/20 points in the Gault & Millau ranking. The restaurant serves contemporary-style cuisine with traditional roots – a blend of highly sophisticated and more simple dishes. The selection of seafood is sublime! The impeccable food is complemented by expert sommelier Vincent Debergé and for those seeking the ultimate personalised experience, indulge yourself with the “Chef’s Table”.
With the extensive renovations, a brand new floor which was overseen by famed interior designer Pierre-Yves Rochon was added in 2017. With the new works, the hotel earned the Minergie label, the system of air conditioning is in geothermal sync with the water of the lake, the ultimate in sustainability. The roof-top of the hotel which has been rebuilt is an idyllic spot, making it ideal for a unique wedding. The hotel’s ballroom and the several lounges can be configured to host an exceptional wedding.
Beau-Rivage Geneve boasts a total of 15 suites, of which 6 are historic and 9 are brand new top-floor unique suites. The renovated include duplex apartments ranging from 100 to 150 m2 and two apartments of 150 and 250 m2. All of them feature oversized all-marble Spa-like bathroom most of them flooded in daylight. Most of the suite bathrooms have jacuzzi bathtubs (free-standing) and showers which include hammam features.
The Swiss made luxury bathroom amenity sets do not only include the ‘usual basics’ but also facial cleansers and hydrating creams. Details such as the strong water pressure in the shower, duo sinks and underfloor heating add to the finest quality of materials and finishes.
Beau-Rivage’s heritage honours the memory of men and women who changed history, some of hotel’s finest suites bearing their names Empress Elisabeth of Austria and Queen of Hungary, known as Sissi. Eleanor Roosevelt, Charles de Gaulle. Signature themed suites also bear the names of iconic personalities such as Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, Charlie, Chaplin, Romy Schneider, Richard Wagner, Jean Cocteau, Elizabeth Taylor.
My suite, the Charlie Chaplin Suite (over 110 sqm), is actually a duplex suite, with majestic palatial windows overlooking the Jet d’Eau of Lake Geneva. Although at first glance the interior design may seem ‘heavy’ especially because of the very strong reds, the overall feel is heavenly comfortable and homy. The bedroom on the upper level featured an incredibly comfortable bed with a remotely controlled shade over an open sky glass, a one-of-a-kind feature I have never experience in any other suite.
At the time of my stay, Lars Wagner had only been at the hotel for less than 2 months. However, the service standards were high, with great attention to details and a predictive approach to satisfy the needs of the most discerning travellers. Most of the staff were courteous and warm, yet still maintaining a fine line of respectfulness. Knowing his exceptional skills to nurture and motivate his team, I am certain the standards of service will only continue to rise.
Despite boasting the finest luxury suites in Geneva (including the more ‘standard’ suites, Beau Rivage Geneve is unable to compete with the city’s absolute leading luxury hotel, the Four Seasons Hotel des Bergues, because of the lack of a Spa and a much needed extensive renovation and redesign of the public spaces (including the lobby) and a must overhaul of the Thai restaurant – presently, its outdoor and indoor aesthetics are below the overall luxury standards of the hotel.
Oliver Petcu in Geneva
1967 : The gastronomic restaurant “Le Chat Botté” is created.
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