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Family History Hotel Alex Zermatt
Alex Perren (born 1933) opened Hotel Alex in December 1960. On his mother’s side, Alex is descended from the first man to climb the Matterhorn, Peter Taugwalder. His mountaineering talent has been with him almost since birth. He was the youngest Zermatt man to pass his ski instructor and mountain guide exams at the age of just 19. It was a dream come true for him. Now he could take guests on guided walks on his beloved Matterhorn and all the other 4000 metre peaks.
Alex became a hotelier after a tragic mountain accident on the Obergabelhorn when he was just 26, as a result of which he lost his lower left leg. So he had to give up his beloved career as a mountain guide and decided to take up a new profession as a hotelier. But fate was smiling on Alex Perren: in 1962 he met Salzburg-born Gisela Becwar, who took a job as a maid-of-all-work at Hotel Alex. Love eventually brought the pair together. They married in 1964, and so began a wonderful success story.
Gisela, a charismatic and extremely charming Austrian, and Alex, a typical down-to-earth ‘Zermatter’, made their mark on the hotel business in Zermatt as devoted hosts – today you would call them a Power Couple.
They set trends in Zermatt. The Alex became the ‘in’ place in this world-famous spa town. No visitor would leave Zermatt without having been to the Alex at least once. Over all those years, the couple invested constantly in the quality of their establishment. Today, the Alex is a jewel in the Zermatt hotel industry’s crown.
Since 2005, Hotel Alex has been run by the second generation, Alex Perren Jr. and his sister Christina Hürlimann-Perren, along with her husband René Hürlimann. They too are committed to the family tradition of doing all they can to ensure their guests feel at home at the Alex. They even manage to achieve the seemingly impossible!
Today the ambience of Hotel Alex is reminiscent of a luxurious mountain chalet. If there were a league table of the most original Swiss hotels, the Alex would surely be in first place. The traditional log-cabin exterior conceals an exciting world of experiences that is packed full of surprises. Hand-turned furniture, brocade curtains, velvet cushions, exquisite carvings, valuable pictures of the Matterhorn and thousands of other little details make the whole hotel into an amazing work of art that captivates visitors with its passionate love of hospitality. The spacious Alex Lounge Bar has themed alcoves such as the ‘Highlander’ or the ‘Scottish Corner’ and is the perfect place to sit back and relax for a while with an impressive selection of whiskies and cigars.
This unique concept is the product of a family of hoteliers who celebrate hospitality with passionate commitment and a wealth of expertise.