Geneva, Switzerland is the ideal city for a chic weekend break. A 10 minute drive from the airport, it’s got plenty of hotels, restaurants, cafes and bars. To make sure you don’t waste a minute of your time in this beautiful city, we’ve asked our Geneva office for their top tips.
Now, while I appreciate that the Kempinski is a hotel rather than a restaurant or bar, its multitude of eateries were mentioned multiple times so we think it deserves it’s place on the list. Le Grill was a firm favourite at the Kempinski, offering the very best of grilled meats and fish; it offers views out over the lake and the French Alps to boot. You’ll also find classic Italian flavours in Il Vero as well as traditional Chinese fare at Tsé Yang.
This quirky little establishment has a great waterside setting with amazing views of the river. Prices can be a little steep in Geneva, but at the Brasserie de Halles de l’île you’ll find things relatively wallet friendly. There’s a good mix of hearty favourites with plenty of pasta on the menu, as well as sandwiches and salads and it’s a firm favourite with those looking for a chic lunch venue.
Le Buvette des Bains is a relaxed dining spot down on the shore. It’s more buffet than restaurants so you order, take and go with seating inside and out. Many locals eat directly on the beach or terrace, especially when the weather is particularly warm. The food is good value and it’s a great place to enjoy a taste of everyday life in Geneva. From September to April a fondue is served, but this is hugely popular so booking is recommended.
Another hotel with popular dining venues is the La Reserve which incidentally is also famed for its outstanding spa, so perfect for a spot of pampering following by lunch. Equally if you’d just prefer to dine, they have a selection of restaurants including The Loti which specialises in fresh seafood with an Italian flair. Or if you’re looking for a little more eastern flavour, perhaps try The Tsé Fung which offers an environment decadent in black lacquer and red velvet.
Rooftop 42 is one of the hippest places to wine and dine, with great views out over Geneva. Set atop of busy shopping centre the entrance can be a little tough to spot but if in doubt, simply ask for directions as locals will most likely know where it is. The menu is as chic as the décor and the cocktails are well respected throughout the city. That said, it can get a little busy, so booking for dinner is a must, especially at a weekend.
Once you’ve dined, should you fancy a cheeky cocktail or two you could do much worse than heading to the L’Atelier Cocktail Club or the L'Apothicaire Cocktail-Club. The latter is the younger sister of the former, so the standards in both are sky high. The difference comes in location and vibe. L’Atelier is further from the main road, so is generally quieter and has a classic vibe, whereas L’Apothicaire is busier, but is still well worth a visit. They also run cocktail-making workshops, so if you feel inspired by the mixologists behind the bar, you can give it a go!