For the very best things to do in St Moritz, we spoke to Heinz E. Hunkeler, General Manager of the Kulm Hotel. Heinz has worked in some of the best hotels in Europe as well as a career stop in New York’s The Pierre, but taking over the reins of Kulm Hotel St Moritz has been like coming home. Heinz grew up in St. Moritz, attended the Lyceum Alpinum in Zuoz and his father (also Heinz Hunkeler) was Hotel Director at the Kulm Hotel St. Moritz.
Early bird and full moon skiing
The slopes of Diavolezza are under the same ownership as the Kulm Hotel St. Moritz and its sister property Grand Hotel Kronenhof in nearby Pontresina and hotel guests can experience some unique and exclusive opportunities, including Early Bird Skiing Sessions (the Diavolezza lifts will open for an hour before the official opening of the slope, every Wednesday) and a private “Glüna Plaina” session when guests can enjoy a breath-taking full-moon private descent on the untouched slopes (2 February and 2 March 2018 only).
Try your hand at ice skating on the Olympic Ice Rink, right in front of the historic Eispavillon, which played a major role in the Olympic Winter Games of 1928 and 1948; the ice skating competitions took place on the natural ice rink, while spectators watched from the terrace of the building. Since February 2017, the Eispavillon has been fully renovated by English architect (and St. Moritz resident) Lord Norman Foster and now houses the chic Kulm Country Club restaurant & bar. Skates are available to hire from the KCC, so why not try a few pirouettes on the ice, followed by a warming drink in the bar?
The Cresta Run
If you’re a man, you can ride the legendary Cresta Run, which is unique to St. Moritz ; alternatively, men and women can take a passenger ride on the Olympic Bob Run St. Moritz-Celerina, the only natural ice bob run in the world. Rides are offered daily and it takes about 75 seconds to race down the 1,722-metre track that starts in the Kulm Hotel grounds. At the horse shoe bend, you’ll experience pressure of up to 4.5G and just before the Martineau Corner you’ll reach a top speed of up to 135km per hour. Not for the faint-hearted – have fun!
Every Friday night, at 7pm, Corvatsch opens Switzerland’s longest (4.2km) floodlit ski slope for night-time skiing; if you want to night ski in style, book into the Kulm Hotel or Grand Hotel Kronenhof for its annual private Corvatsch Night (which takes place on 1 April 2018 this coming season); there’ll be drinks & canapés on the gondola on the way up, raclette at a mountain hut on the way down and DJs pumping out great tunes all night. For the ultimate indulgence, rent the slope to yourself any night of the season except Fridays – visit www.corvastch.ch for more details.
World class events
And last but not least: make sure you visit St. Moritz when one of the great winter events is taking place on frozen Lake of St. Moritz, such as the Snow Polo World Cup St. Moritz (26-28 January 2018), White Turf (4, 11 & 18 February 2018), Cricket on Ice (8-10 February 2018) and the Engadin Ski Marathon (1 March 2018, celebrating its 50th anniversary).