Gasthaus Alpenblick, AppenzellThis prototypical Swiss country hotel sits in a meadow on a knoll approximately 100 yards above the Schwende rail stop, just off the road that leads from Appenzell to Wasserauen. The name Alpenblick (“Alpine view”), of course, is indicative of one of the hotel’s main attractions: marvelous vistas of the Alpstein range, including the Säntis, its highest peak. Light wood dominates the décor in the sparkling, airy guestrooms, many of which have balconies offering the best views of any hotel reviewed here. There are four floors and a lift.

At night, the hotel’s cozy Stubli draws a varied crowd of locals, farmers and hotel guests, all there for the hearty Swiss fare or just to spend the evening in conversation over a beverage. The premises’ majordomo is owner/chef Michael Fässler, one of those never-sleep dynamos whose life is dedicated to running a small hotel. Though the location may feel remote, guests can walk the few steps to the rail stop and be in Zürich in two hours, St. Gallen in an hour, and Appenzell in nine minutes. Trains run at least hourly.

The Alpenblick is a winner, and we give it a strong recommendation.

Daily Rates: Singles CHF 94-98 doubles CHF 150–170. Free parking.

Contact: Gasthaus Alpenblick, CH-9057 Schwende bei Appenzell, tel. +49/071 799 1173, fax 071 799 1455, e-mail This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.,

Rating: Quality 15/20, Value 16/20