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Monday, December 2, 2013

Avant-Première: Johannes Badrutt, His Legendary Bet And 150 Years Of Winter Tourism

BPH 1910_Credit Badrutt¹s Palace Hotel Archive_low[1]A crazy idea with far-reaching consequences: In September 1864 Johannes Badrutt promised his English summer guests that they would experience the most glorious sunny days in the Engadin if they came back again in winter.

Should they be disappointed, he would personally pay for their stay and all their travel expenses. Thanks to this extraordinary bet, Switzerland’s winter season 2014/15 marks the 150th anniversary of winter sports.

This occasion cannot be celebrated soon enough: Badrutt’s Palace Hotel is already offering its guests a ski pass for the whole St. Moritz region for stays of two or more consecutive nights. If the sheer pleasure of skiing is not enough, guests in search of a particular thrill can also opt for the “Winter Adrenalin” package.

In July 1863 Thomas Cook laid the foundations for winter sports with a group of 11 English travellers: Cook travelled through Switzerland with his guests and could not have known back then that many more English would follow suit. This is how the travellers ventured further and further into the Swiss Alps until they finally discovered the beauty of St. Moritz.

The dry Engadin climate proved to be very appealing to city dwellers who were suffering from lung diseases caused by polluted air. The English who could afford it often travelled to St. Moritz for the treatment of the prevalent tuberculosis. One evening in September 1864 the English summer guests expressed their concerns to Johannes Badrutt about returning to dreary London. The ever business-minded hotelier then came up with the idea of the bet which would entice the English to venture back again over the passes into the Engadin. Badrutt won the bet and the first winter season was born – almost 150 years ago.

The team at Badrutt’s Palace Hotel still surprise guests with innovations today – even without a bet. For those searching for the ultimate thrill and more than just skiing on the pistes, the Winter Adrenalin package is the perfect choice. This package can be booked from CHF 2'760.00 in a Superior Single Room and from CHF 3'990.00 in a Superior Double Room and includes a three nights’ stay plus three evening meals in either the elegant ›Le Restaurant‹ or cosy ›Chesa Veglia‹ (both excluding drinks), a ski pass for the whole region and transfers to and from the ski lift for the duration of stay, a heli-skiing trip in the deep virgin snow of the Engadin Alps (with a tour guide), a speedy sledge run down Muottas Muragl including sledge hire, and an adrenalin filled run with a bobsleigh professional for the ultimate highlight.

For additional information and reservations please contact +41 (0)81 837 1000 or

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The Expeditionist

The Expeditionist
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