Alpine Edge

Ski down the roof of this new Swiss hotel

Francesca Street, CNNPublished 14th November 2018
(CNN) — Until now, skiing off hotel roofs has been an exploit reserved for James Bond stunt doubles and drunken fools with a penchant for plaster casts.
That's going to change when the Audemars Piguet Hôtel des Horlogers opens its doors.
At this new hotel, due to open 2020, guests will be able to ski down the hotel roof straight on to the ski trails below, without risking life and limb.
The ambitious design from architects Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG) blends the top of the building seamlessly into the snowy surroundings of the Vallée de Joux in western Switzerland.
The hotel, named for Swiss watchmaker Audemars Piguet, will also neighbor a museum celebrating this manufacturer of classic timepieces -- also designed by BIG.

Next level skiing

Ski roof hotel 2 (1)
Guests at this upcoming hotel can ski down the roof.
Courtesy Bjarke Ingels Group
BIG partner Daniel Sundlin told CNN Travel the hotel's multipurpose roof symbolizes connection, aiming to forge ties between locals and guests, as well as the outdoors and indoors.
"Quite early in the process we fell in love with this idea of a terrace building that follows the topography, the site is essentially sitting in a slope," he says.
Inside, there will be two restaurants, a bar, a spa and conference center alongside hotel rooms.
"Audemars Piguet wanted a hotel that feels more like a guesthouse, than a traditional hotel," adds Sundlin.
All the rooms will be connected by a sloping corridor, designed to mimic a ski trail.
So how do you ski down the hotel roof?
"Essentially there's a local cross-country trail just in front of the building," explains Sundlin. "So in the wintertime you will be able to enter the roof terraces directly from the hotel room corridors, and there will be an adjacent space where you can change gear and put your skis on and essentially just ski down the ramp and out into nature. "

Seamlessly connected

Ski roof hotel 2 (2)
The hotel's glamorous interior.
Courtesy Bjarke Ingels Group
"Being able to ski directly out of your hotel room into the landscape will give plenty of people a seamless and exciting way to explore their surroundings," says Sundlin.
"On the other hand, it will also give the local skiing community direct access to the hotel. "
Ski roof hotel (7)
In the summer the slopes will be covered in grass.
Courtesy Bjarke Ingels Group
Construction on the hotel is underway -- the first stone was laid in August 2018.
"We're in the ground as we speak and we're pouring the first floors of concrete right now," says Sundlin. "It's in the making."