Sunday, January 26, 2014

Grand Hotel Kronenhof, Switzerland.

Grand Hotel Kronenhof, Switzerland.

The Grand Hotel Kronenhof is an historic five-star Belle Epoque-era Grand Hotel in Pontresina, Upper Engadin, Switzerland.
The hotel is situated in the Laret quarter of the village, adjacent to the San Niculò protestant church, and is included in the Swiss Inventory of Cultural Property of National and Regional Significance.
For over 140 years, the hotel was owned by its founding family, the Gredigs.
In 1848, Andreas Gredig (1806–1877) acquired the Gasthaus Rössli for his son Lorenz Gredig (1829–1905). The guesthouse business included a wine shop. Lorenz Gredig initially named the business "Gasthaus zur Krone-Post", but later changed the name to "Krone". Over time, by constructing additions and incorporating existing outbuildings, he also steadily enlarged the guesthouse and transformed it into an hotel.
Between 1896 and 1898, the architects Jakob and Georg Ragaz (de) expanded the hotel into a representative, horseshoe-shaped three-winged structure. Since then, it has had a Cour d'honneur (three sided courtyard) dominated by a crowned dome, which still surmounts the main entrance of the hotel and its neo-baroque-style light-bathed entrance hall.
At the time of the expansion, the hotel's name was changed to "Grand Hotel Kronenhof und Bellavista", from which its present name, "Grand Hotel Kronenhof", was later derived.
The outbreak of World War I in 1914 put an abrupt end to further expansion plans. The war and crisis years impacted the hotel's profitability, but its survival was secured by the wine shop, which was still trading, and agriculture.
In 1989, the heirs of the founding Gredig family sold the hotel to two Swiss private investors. In 2004, the two investors, in turn, sold it to the "Grand Hotels Engadinerkulm" company, which also owns the historic "Hotel Kulm" in St. Moritz. Extensive renovation work was begun that year, but the hotel's original Belle Epoque exterior and interior have both been largely preserved.
In 2014, the hotel was named as the best hotel in the world in TripAdvisor's annual Travellers' Choice Awards.



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