Hotel review: Beau-Rivage, Geneva Switzerland

What’s the concept?

Situated on the waterfront in central Geneva, the Beau-Rivage is one of the oldest hotels in the city. It’s also one of the only five-star hotels in Geneva to still be owned by a family (the Mayers) who have managed the property since it first opened in 1865. The property has spectacular interior design, with many of the original features still present (watch out for the beautiful indoor fountain and original marble columns when you check in).

What are the highlights?

Despite being over 150 years old, the hotel seamlessly mixes antique design with the latest five-star hotel amenities. From the entry-level executive rooms to the 140-square-metre apartments, you can expect the latest mod-cons including multifunctional charging stations by each bed, remote-controlled blackout blinds and multimedia entertainment systems, which can be managed by iPad, remote or switch.

Stand out features?

The hotel recently opened their renovated apartment rooms, situated on the penthouse floor of the hotel. The two-floor apartment suites are kitted-out in handpicked antique furniture, which emulate the fashion trends of the late 19th century. Each room has views of Lake Geneva, and has a skylight to take in the stars while you lie in bed (and a remote-controlled blackout blind for when you want to sleep). Each apartment honours the past, whilst remaining ergonomic and competitive in terms of the latest five-star hotel features (including the fabulous spa-fitted bathrooms, see ‘Things to Consider’, below). The ground floor of each apartment includes a guest bathroom, lounge area, desk and study space and food and drink area, whilst the first floor includes a bedroom, walk-in wardrobe and spacious ensuite.

The hotel (including all apartment rooms) has some of the best views of Lake Geneva and the jet d’eau in the city. On a clear day, guests can take in views of the French mountains and Mont Blanc across the Italian border in the distance. The hotel has a fabulous bar (called The Bar), with live music most nights. The service at the Beau-Rivage is personable, and the team go above and beyond to ensure you have the best stay possible. The hotel also offers two historic guided tours; one of the city, covering historic hotels, castles and churches and one which details the history of the Beau-Rivage.

Things to consider?

The hotel does not have a pool or spa facilities; however, the hotel’s apartment rooms include a state-of-the-art steam room-come-shower room, and a jacuzzi bath. It’s worth booking ahead as at certain points in the year (particularly around Geneva’s famous watch expos) as the hotel can book up far in advance.

Food highlights?

The Beau-Rivage is home to the Michelin Star restaurant La Chat-Botté, one of the most popular French gastronomy hotspots in the city. Led by head chef Dominique Gauthier, the menu is full of seasonal flavours and colours. Unfortunately, the restaurant was closed when BBC Good Food Middle East visited most recently, but on previous visits, the chef’s dishes on the a la carte menu stood out including the frogs legs from Vallorbe with spinach, garlic cream and the Swiss veal chop, artichokes and tetragon, peppermint. The hotel also has a Thai restaurant called Patara and The Bar, which serves from the same kitchen as Le Chat-Botté. If you’re looking to dine out, the fabulous Michelin-acclaimed (and reasonably priced) Le Rouge et Le Blanc tapas bar is a short walk down the road from the hotel. Be sure to head there early – the restaurant quickly becomes packed-out as soon as it opens at 5pm. Serving delicious tapas dishes with red and white, star dishes to try include the prawns in a rich hot garlicky sauce, the seafood tortilla wraps and the meat platter.

Details: For reservations or enquiries contact: or telephone +41 22 716 66 66. For more information about the hotel and its restaurants, visit the Beau-Rivage. For more information about the tapas bar, visit Le Rouge et Le Blanc . If you enjoyed this article, you may like these French recipes.