At a Glance
The veritable grande dame hotel of St. Moritz, flanked by luxury shops, has beautiful views of the lake, an expansive wellness area and the town’s busiest see-and-be-seen lobby, known locally as St. Moritz’s living room.
- The large ski shop on property
- The staff-guest ratio in season: 600 people for 155 rooms in the winter peak season
- The elegant rooms renovated by Champalimaud Design
Sitting at the entrance of St. Moritz Dorf, the so-called Palace (all locals drop the Badrutt’s) is a massive building with turrets and a large tower that serves as an iconic landmark of this famous resort town. It was opened in 1896 by Kasper Badrutt (the son of Johannes, who opened the Kulm as St. Moritz’s first hotel in 1856) and remains in the Badrutt family to this day, though longtime managing director Hans Wiedemann is slated to take it over from the aging owners.
The Palace is the buzziest, most jetset of the St. Moritz hotel scene, as is displayed in the lobby lounge, which is packed tight with tables and cushy armchairs, and is known locally as St. Moritz’s living room. This is the address for those who want to flaunt their newest purchases, be they fur-clad Tom Ford boots or bejeweled Bogner ski suits. It’s no surprise that the hallways are often referred to as the catwalks St. Moritz.
Considering the hotel’s gilded reputation, it is perhaps surprising that the staff could not be friendlier, creating an atmosphere of warmth and generosity. The views of Lake St. Moritz are stunning, not only from the lobby lounge but also from the many other common spaces and from more than half the rooms that face the toward the valley. There are 155 in total spread across eight stories and featuring a classic or more modern design scheme. Even the more updated rooms, completed by Champalimaud Design in 2021, feel traditional and understated, with muted color palettes, upholstered headboards, plush carpets and polished antique. Bathrooms are clad in Italian marble and most have separate tubs and showers. Some rooms and most of the suites come with balconies and gorgeous views across Lake St. Moritz or towards Corviglia ski area.
The Palace occupies six acres, so the list of hotel amenities is long: of the six restaurants, the local, cozy Chesa Veglia Italian eatery is beloved and one of the hardest reservations to get during peak seasons. Matsuhisa@Badrutt’s, opened in the 2014/15 season in the former tennis hall of the hotel, has a cool design with colorful leather seating areas and a groovy lounge area. The hotel has three other restaurants on the premises and a night club, King’s Social Club, which—before transitioning to the best dance party in town—offers sophisticated small plates like ceviche and beef tartare to match its wine and cocktail offerings. And on the slopes, Badrutt’s operates El Paradiso.
The huge spa is lovely, as is the large indoor-outdoor pool that faces the lake. Adjacent to the pool and wellness area is the extensive (and complimentary) Kid’s Club. Located at the beginning of town, the Palace is not ski in/ski out, but arranges for easy transfer to the nearby funicular that takes skiers up to Corviglia. The hotel shares a ski locker at the top with the St. Moritz ski school, so Palace guests can comfortably change up there.
Who Should Stay
High-rollers, VIPs and travelers who like being the center of attention. The Palace has an insider scene, and the lobby is always bustling. Families who want to be in close proximity to Corviglia, with its ski school, will be happy here.
Written by Simone Girner