Outdoor Swiss hotel ‘rooms’ give new meaning to light and airy

By Arnd Wiegmann

WALENSTADT, Switzerland (Reuters) – Two Swiss conceptual artists are offering seven open air “hotel rooms” this summer across a “performance space” encompassing eastern Switzerland and Liechtenstein.

Guests “perform”, without an audience, by spending the night in a double bed with unobstructed views of majestic landscape.

The services of a white-gloved “modern butler” — often a local farmer in jeans and Wellington boots — are included in the 295 Swiss francs ($300)-a-night cost.

Created by twin brothers Frank and Patrik Riklin and partner Daniel Charbonnier, the “Zero Real Estate” project aims to explode traditional approaches to hospitality in the country known for its luxurious mountain and lakeside resorts.

“The idea is that with ‘Zero Real Estate’, we make others the performers by performing the concept of real estate without hotel rooms,” Frank Riklin said during a preview.

Previous versions of the installation have featured beds in a nuclear bunker and at an elevation of 1,600 meters (5,250 feet) in the mountainous Grisons region of eastern Switzerland.

The novel coronavirus pandemic could make the concept event more attractive, the brothers say.

“The room without a wall and roof also shows a kind of liberation. There is probably no other place to enjoy a better ventilated room than this during summer in Switzerland,” Patrik Riklin said.

And if it rains? Guests can retreat to standby shelters in local farmhouses or barns.

($1 = 0.9604 Swiss francs)

(Writing by Michael Shields; editing by Philippa Fletcher)

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