The Ambassador Hotel, next to the world-famous opera house in the vibrant Zurich district of Seefeld, overlooks the idyllic shore of Lake Zurich. Following a complete renovation, it re-opened as a four-star boutique hotel in February 2023. Interior designer Ina Rinderknecht opted for VAIA by Dornbracht when designing the new bathrooms.
The hotel has 44 rooms and suites and two restaurants, as well as a lounge and boardroom. The interior of each of the five storeys is customised in a way that recalls the time when Zurich was a thriving marketplace for exclusive fabrics and textiles. The history of the international trade relations with countries such as France, Spain, England, or India, that flourished in the nineteenth century, is artistically presented in the form of decorative elements that are typical of the country, and is shown through special inlays and traditionally patterned materials.
The Ambassador is a distinctive part of the Zurich city skyline: Built in 1899, the building is steeped in tradition and reflects the fashionable charm of the Belle Époque. After extensive renovation work, property developers and brothers Yves and Raffael Meili are now opening a new chapter in the history of the hotel. They were supported in their venture by the Architectonica architecture studio and interior designer Ina Rinderknecht, who retained the old-fashioned splendour of the building by giving it a modern-day interpretation. The result was an exciting symbiosis of the historic structure of the building, and a contemporary lifestyle.
The actual layout of the premises blends contemporary design with classic touches. Seen here: The SILK lounge & bar. Marble and bronze are combined with made-to-measure furniture, bright curtains and carpets are harmonised with rustic oak parquet flooring and hand-made wooden panelling. Intricate details such as terazzo flooring embellished with gold ornamentation and fine silks, intensify the warm, elegant atmosphere that characterises the hotel.
In the COCOON executive lounge & boardroom, rustic browns and greens create a welcoming atmosphere. The attic space is ideal for relaxed conversations and as a conference room for smaller groups.
The rooms are resplendent in a stylish blend of past and present: with custom-made furnishings and lamps, marble tables and warm parquet flooring.
The bathrooms are a key component of the room design: The clever interplay of historical reference and a modern touch is also evident in the smallest of spaces. The clever interplay of historical reference and a modern touch is also evident in the bathrooms. The mosaic tiles, for instance, are inspired by the original floors that were discovered during the alterations. Bathed here in the warm light shed by two lamps, the oval, bronze-coloured mirror immediately catches the eye.
The VAIA finish is also bronze in colour: The Dornbracht fitting created by Sieger Design has been installed on the marble washstand as well as in the shower and on the rim of the bath. Stylistically assured, the special finish takes up the grandeur of the turn of the century. At the same time, the flowing form and clean, geometric contours of VAIA create a gentle contrast that imbues the space with positive energy and firmly anchors it in the here and now. The wall-mounted VAIA fitting above the bath also integrates harmoniously into the living space.