A distinct sweat, found only in mundane winter scenes, has been long gone. Now a mountain pass with thousands of falling velvety flakes clothing the asphalt in white provided an adhesion challenge for wide, rear wheeled rubber puissance. Will this snake, less and less resembling of a road, allow entrance into the bowels of Alpine hedonism. Whilst memory remained. That of the most agile of horses, rushing on ice, their jockeys, pushing for the ball with their long sticks. Dangerous? Not for use in the heated lounge next to the arena, wondering which champagne to pour in the occasional event of goal. Snow Polo in Cortina d’Ampezzo is a popular and must-see, it’s a proper start of this, into the blue spree.
A Giardino Mountain Retreat
The luggage was tidily placed into the trunk, tidily to make sure it fit, while it did provide for extra downforce on the rear axle. After all, this was winter and a heavenly blue GranTurismo Sport is bewitchingly powerful for such a climate. Overriding the automatic transmission into the manual mode, I kept the gears at least a step higher than usual, hoping that 450 bhp would not spin the wheels yet kept on pursuing the top of the mountain. Another side was promising a lot. For starters, a boutique hotel for me to rest. The curves were wide and road well maintained, just a notion or Switzerland was very close. Going very much wide on these hairpins proved essential, not losing momentum and speed while overcoming the altitude meters.
Maserati Reviewed – A Giardino Mountain Retreat
Even at 1.500 rpm Maserati would pull and provide a low bass growl, something one could never get tired of. Eventually, night, I pass the St. Moritz sign and almost miss my località. A Giardino Mountain retreat. While the staff marvels at the amount of luggage I amassed into the svelte coupe and remove the latest Elan Amphibio skis from the roof, I am already invited into one of 14 suites. This one is going to be just mine. Should I admire the fusion of modern eclecticism and warmth this property provides?
I appreciate the daring design, property that Giardino Mountain retreat has to offer in Sant Moritz. Maybe that’s why it’s located on its outskirts, in Champfèr. A tranquil and bright spot, where mornings begin in the Guardalej restaurant and continue on the mountains where 350 kilometres of runs are outshined only by a statistical 322 sun days per year. The pistes are incredibly open, wide and maintained to resemble a crust on a cake. A skiers delight indeed. Not to mention the Giardino Mountain Resort, provides a shuttle to any of the funiculars which rise all up to 3.303 meters of spectacular above sea level panorama.
After such a day, I deserved a spa. The mix of teas provided for us was fascinating for guests such as me. We are a crowd much younger than those in the rest of the valley. A two-star Michelin in house establishment led by chef Rolf Fliegauf.
Another alternative, in St. Moritz where Maserati has been invited to host some of the worthiest clients. This is to celebrate the presence in this “Top of The World” oldest ski resort in the world.
This morning calls havoc because I have not had enough sleep. Too much champagne.
Milano Photographer – Marko Turk
A Milano photographer called, Marko Turk is here. The hairdresser is waiting, for Lucia Pieri. Many people are on their way from GranTurismo. I can’t recognise the Maserati due to lots of road dirt.
Luckily Claudio Caser, a house concierge, the president of Swiss concierge association, a very compassionate human being, takes care of everything. I met the snowy mountain top and photographers reflectors in the latest of Lucia Pieri dazzling fur designs.
Private Jet Pick Up
Anyone who’s flown in a private jet like those from Jettly knows it can be a fast and luxurious experience. So naturally, the highlight of the day is an arrangement on Europe’s highest private jet airport in Samedan. A few kilometres from the hotel. To my amazement, awaiting on the snowcapped piste is my blue Maserati, in an exact shade of blue a Bombardier Global Express private jet, and again in exact same colour as the two, a blue chinchilla coat. A surprise homage from Lucia Pieri herself. Turk, the photographer is pure old school and realizing the sun will be at our disposal, immediately forgot about artificial lighting. The result is captivating enough to convey the emotion of that late morning, those 30 minutes spent in the extravaganza. Imagine 120 jets taking off per day and the airport shut off in that period just for our little spectacle. Thank you and I bow to all involved.
Milano Fashion Week
Little did I know that colder air is denser, therefore richer with oxygen. How does that translate into our story? The Maserati you know, was using all power available and more. Gears weren’t spared, nor the Sport button making the engine sound like a roaring lion. To my enjoyment, being late for a Milano Fashion Week show, only a considerate few hours from here, meant the engine melody above 7.000 revolutions could be my travel mantra. Nobody likes latecomers to their show and Missoni is no exception. The first row was packed and the only seat left on the bench was mine. Nobody dared to warm it with its bun. For the next 15 minutes, a carefully selected and handcrafted wear made its announcement of the upcoming season. Applause announced the ending and what I could remember was how beautiful she was. She. The model Joan Smalls. For the first time have I seen her in person and the aura surrounding her is just… well different.
Returning to St. Moritz meant two things. That the natural habitat of Engadin valley was to be my home for a few more days. And that the residence was now different. Best what tradition offers around here. Waldhaus in Sils. Don’t let the name mislead you as this is no forest hut. More a castle reigning above the lake and valley. Patrick Dietrich, the fifth generation of family owners greets me in the lobby and a fairytale can begin. My belongings are well stored in the suite whereas its fittings, fixtures, tables, chairs, bed and cabinets are dating a hundred years back. All restored to immaculate condition. The hotel folks in Switzerland are funny. Very competitive among each other but will do anything for a guest, even driving up to my other hotel, picking all my bags and skis and bringing them here. Wonderful, makes me want to stay here longer.
At least with the expensive ski passes, which now come at a rate of 25 CHF if you are a guest of the hotel. Almost four times cheaper than in regular sales. Considering the size of Waldhaus, one notes the classical grand hotel proportions and therefore the ballroom. Something which is as apperitivo before sleep as is a piano concert in the middle of day. Extravagant dinners with selections of food ranging from biological gardens to home fed poultry is a magnet for guests with impeccable taste for the fine things in life. And most of all, nature lovers. Such a pristine spot surrounded by woods, a lake and mountains is rare even in novels.
Do not come here if you do not wish to be greeted upon by your name, smiled at and distinguished as family, with all wishes taken care of with quiet and efficient execution. This property along its staff is the worthiest understatement of opulent Sankt Moritz grounds. No wonder they put the striking blue Maserati in their underground garage. And where else would you find the owner overseeing the checkout bill, making sure guest was satisfied to the utmost of levels.
If this is what tradition is all about then let it last.