Eden Roc

When the hotel is located on a crystal clear lake, with a backdrop of mountains and villages in the distance, waving palm trees on the coiffured lawn and not far from ancient stone houses and small alleyways, it is pretty much a given the place is called Eden. Eden Roc, to be completely correct and honestly, it surely fits all the anticipation, write travel pros Laura Brown and Laura Snook in this exclusive review of Switzerland’s finest.

The Welcome

Situated along Lake Maggiore, the Swiss twin of Italian Lake Como – similar in style yet almost more picturesque and for sure less popular with the paparazzi, Eden Roc holds the fort with exquisite taste. Spread out over two large buildings the hotel stuns with colour and interior design from Carlo Rampazzi, the in-house designer of the Tschuggen Group. Vibrant colours, elegant materials and striking art pieces are placed together in this waterfront property. You get a taste of this as soon as you step into the bright lobby:

Sweet Suite

The daring mind of Rampazzi promises to amaze, in particular on the Art Floor, where each suite offers elements of surprise – a painting stuck to the ceiling instead of the wall or a hand painted, eye-catching dresser in the hallway.

Adding the serene beauty of the vista from your suite just makes the picture complete. The rooms are spacious and comfortable.


The Food

Sitting on the waterfront, all you can think of is Mr. Clooney himself arriving asking you to join him for coffee. The marina is heaving in summer with sailboats, yachts and curious kayakers, all stepping on shore after their time on the water to feast on the local Ticino cuisine or slide onto the sun loungers for an aperitif. Eden Roc prides itself in the Ticino cuisine, served in La Casetta – a small and idyllic, historic lake house.

A dinner by the fire in winter or when the sun is out on the terrace, La Casetta offers delicious local pasta dishes, with the catch-of-the-day during the season as a highlight. Marina, the modern setting on the edge of the property entices the senses with a more international cuisine, yet keeping in touch with regional favourites. The pumpkin gnocchi is a treat, the salads are dressed to perfection and the risotto is rich in taste and has that velvety texture one expects. Breakfast is served in La Brezza and offers seasonal inspired dishes, where service is comfortable and a good eye for detail is a given – the bircher muesli is delicious and the Swiss cheeses a great complement to the fresh selection of breads.


The Spa

Referring back to nature, the Eden Roc Spa is set indoors as well as outdoors for those who enjoy lingering in the sun. Inside stones from the Maggia river form a Kneipp path to stimulate the circulation. The spa menu offers treatments for men and women and facials from three different product lines whereby the therapist surely knows her trade and adds in some practical advice on how to maintain the best skin in your own cosmetic routine. The treatment rooms are set up with natural light and a cute little courtyard is perfectly poised and waiting for you to relax with a cup of herbal tea.



When visiting Eden Roc, make sure to head into town. The town of Ascona is filled with charming cafes, art galleries and tiny boutiques. In late Autumn the town is dozing into a wintersleep but when the sun comes out in March and heats up the lawns and terraces, Ascona overflows with tourists and folk enjoying the finer things in life. Saluti!


Here is style inspiration to make the most out of a fabulous trip to this paradise of a hotel – ideal for a Spring stroll by the lake:


Eden Roc Switzerland



A line dress
645 AED – karenmillen.com

Kate Spade red handbag
1,460 AED – nordstrom.com

Ted Baker watch
535 AED – lordandtaylor.com

MANGO tassle earrings
67 AED – mango.com

African scarve


Guest Post by Rupert Wright of Ashbright
Paris holds no terrors for well-heeled travellers, who can check into one of the city’s eleven palaces such as ­ the Georges V, Plaza Athénée, Le Bristol or my favourite, Le Meurice. But for those on any kind of budget, finding a decent place to stay in the French capital can be a challenge. Bedrooms smaller than a bathroom, bathrooms smaller than a bidet, we’ve all stayed at one of them and lived to regret it. So, it’s with great pleasure that I have found almost the perfect Parisian hotel – and you don’t need to be a tech billionaire to afford it. The Bedford has been family owned and run for more than a hundred years, combining Swiss roots, French flair and English tradition. It benefits from strong leadership, attention to detail, and a staff eager to look after you. With just 140 rooms, it is large enough to intimate, but not so large that you are anonymous. It’s a 4 star, but deserves more.
The rooms
Parquet flooring; high ceilings; comfortable beds and pillows; keys rather than plastic cards; and best of all, real switches, that turn the lights on and off. The Bedford has sensibly ignored many of the technical traps that can make staying in a hotel room more challenging than setting up your own satellite transmission site. The result is a place that combines understated elegance with modern touches and old school service. Some rooms overlook the rue de l’Arcade, others look over a courtyard, but all are a decent size and a muted colour. There is air-conditioning too, which is a relief when the summer strikes.
Breakfast is a buffet in a glorious belle époque room, boasting stucco reliefs and a glass roof. Dinner happens here too, French cuisine and fairly formal. There’s also a relaxed bistro/bar that serves meals and cocktails.
A stone’s throw from the Place de la Madeleine, the Place de la Concorde and the Tuileries Gardens, and the Opera, this is one of the best areas to stay in Paris. (Marcel Proust used to live just around the corner). It is a lively area, with great boutiques, wine bars and an eclectic mix of restaurants, Japanese, Italian, Chinese, Korean, Lebanese and French too.
Don’t miss
The Bedford knows that many people like to travel with their pets, so they are allowed to stay too.
HOTEL BEDFORD, 17, RUE DE L’ARCADE 75008 PARIS Tel. : +33 (0)1 44 94 77 77 Fax : +33 (0)1 44 94 77 97 More information at www.hotel-bedford.com
Rooms from €250; Suites from €450


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Sara Hamdan

Welcome to a magazine editor’s guide to luxury hotels and what to wear when you’re there! My work has appeared in: The International New York Times, Rolling Stone, Variety and CNN Travel. I’ve held editorial roles at VIVA Magazine, Dubai Magazine and Stylist Arabia.  Now, I freelance for the likes of Google, CNN and Savoir Flair!

Editing travel pages was always my favourite part of working for lifestyle magazines. I started this blog out of a love of beautiful hotels that provide the fairytale escape of a day as a princess where breakfast is a buffet and chocolates appear on my pillow.

PR queries, feedback and compliments? Email sara@holidaysinheels.com!