Design-led Food & Travel
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Nevaϊ – Verbier, Switzerland

The Nevaϊ is a breath of fresh air: the only truly chic, contemporary hotel within a renovated traditional chalet-style building located right in the centre of Verbier and next door to well-known sister hotel, Kings. The small team of Swiss and English staff are ultra friendly, welcoming and accommodating. The pale, almost Scandinavian wooden floors throughout juxtapose perfectly with the icy white fixtures such as the bar stools, reception desk and bed linen. The fabrics used throughout are rich in colour and texture – deep pinks, reds and turquoise – and the overall feel is very Designer’s Guild. The rooms are a decent size, stylishly decorated with large LCD TVs, large wardrobes, desks, generous balconies with gorgeous views across the village or mountains and super-comfy beds, duvets and squishy feather pillows.

Location-wise, the hotel is right in the middle of the postcard-perfect village but somehow it’s not noisy. A mini-bus service is at everyone’s beck and call to drive skiers the 500 metres to the nearest ski lift. The service is excellent: just take the hotel’s telephone number, call when you’ve almost finished your vin chaud and a silver Mercedes mini-van will pick you up and whisk you back to the hotel!

Check-in at 3pm / check-out at 11am (although you can ask for an extension if quiet or the expected guests are arriving late.

A lot of Russians kitted out in Channel and Prada making the most of the snow, especially during their Orthodox Christmas period. Otherwise, mostly British, French and Swiss 25-30 somethings.


  • Restaurant – Breakfast 7-10am; restaurant closed for lunch; Dinner 7.30-10pm. Unusually excellent food with an imaginative menu for a hotel restaurant. Expect dishes such as Virgin Mary risotto (tomato risotto with a spicy celery salad), perfect steaks to order direct from the grill and goat’s cheese, polenta and Portobello mushroom stacks on a bed of sundried tomato & olive tapenade. For dessert, crème brulée comes with a lime twist and chocolate fondant oozes melted white chocolate. The wine list is expensive and only comes by the glass if you ask specifically for the cocktail list.
  • Bar – There are two very cool bars. The ground floor bar /cafe is open all day and it’s position opposite a fantastic fire which runs the full length of the sofa area means it can get busy in the early evening. Grab a paper, a JD + coke and a bowl of wasabi peanuts and relax! The upstairs lounge bar comes alive in the evening and is a great spot for a drink before or after dinner, although it can get a little smoky.


  • Spa – The Spa is good, if expensive, with a sauna and hamman and plenty of great face and body treatments. A word of warning: the sauna area is mixed and, despite the signs asking otherwise, you might stumble across the odd naked Russian.
  • Ski hire – Ski Centre, North off Place Centrale (t: +41 27 771 40 10 / / Partner ski shop with the Hotel Nevai. 10% off all ski and snowboard hire. Excellent, brand new kit and knowledge.
  • Nightclub – Infamous Verbier club, The Farm, where Prince Andrew reputedly met Fergie, is attached to the hotel.


  • Nevaϊ – 1936 Verbier (t: +41 27 775 4001 / /

2 – 8 January 2009

Very cold -5/2°C, but sunny.

Best bet is probably a cheap flight to Geneva. From Geneva it’s a two-hour train journey, followed by a 30-minute St Bernard ski train and a short Post bus ride to Verbier.

Ask for a room on the second or third floors to avoid being too close to the nightclub and if you’re not keen on heavy smoking naked Russians, aim for later in January.


  • The Good – Not an inch of orange pine wood in sight!
  • The Bad – Apart from the smoking policy which comes as a shock to us Brits now, the only criticism might be that since the hotel only opened in December 08, staff lack real local, insider knowledge.

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