Your personal guide to Zurich from our Group Head of Marketing & Communications
Alain Gozzer grew up in Zurich and remains a proud citizen of Switzerland’s biggest city. Here, he offers VISIONAPARTMENTS customers some exclusive personal tips for enjoying Zurich to the fullest.
What is living in Zurich like? What do you and your family like to do in your spare time?
Zurich is amazing – it’s no coincidence that the city is always listed in the world’s top three in terms of quality of life. Even if Zurich seems to many like a village compared to other European metropolises, it offers a wide range of activities. I grew up here and I’m a proud Zurich citizen. I’ve seen many cities on all my travels, but always like returning to my hometown; it’s cozy and chic at the same time. What I often enjoy with my family is a cruise on the lake, for example, combined with a quick shopping tour or a nice restaurant.
If you had to organise a one-day excursion through Zurich, what path would you choose?
As mentioned, Zurich is not a huge place and there are multiple ways to discover the city in just one day. I would recommend a stroll from the main train station to Paradeplatz and down Bahnhofstrasse to the lake, then crossing the bridge to Bellevue – there’s no better place to take pictures. Also, don’t miss the new Sechseläutenplatz in front of the opera house; from there, you can walk through the old town of Zurich along the River Limmat. Everything is easy to combine with shopping, coffee breaks, dining, and sightseeing. Don’t miss the churches and museums in the heart of Zurich, either!
How about some tips on where to find nice food in Zurich, including both fine and everyday cuisine?
There are already so many places for good cuisine and new ones opening all the time... I don’t think any other city in the world can boast the same concentration of restaurants. To mention some highlights, however:
For traditional Swiss/Zurich food: Zum Kropf
For Asian cuisine: Angkor
For Italian cuisine: Brasserie Seefeld or Ristorante Toscano
For a simple sausage (bratwurst or cervelat): Sternen Grill
For vegetarians: Hiltl – the world’s first vegetarian restaurant, by the way!
To combine drinks with a nice dinner: Loft Five
In summer, meanwhile, it’s always nice to dine down by the lake – particularly at Seerose in Zurich-Wollishofen.
Where can you get the best coffee in town?
And where are the hotspots of the Zurich nightlife? Do you have a club worth recommending?
I’m a dad now, so I’m not so much into clubbing anymore; Club Hiltl is definitely a nice place, though, especially on Fridays. Aura is another good address, and Tao’s Icon Club is also worth a visit. I’ve heard good things about Club Bellevue and Plaza Club, as well.
What about shopping?
Besides Zurich’s famous Bahnhofstrasse, where everything is a bit more expensive than in other places, I recommend the city’s old town (called Niederdörfli) for a shopping tour. Another place I like is the Viadukt, and visiting the open markets on Helvetiaplatz and Bürkliplatz on Tuesdays and Fridays is always a nice experience for food enthusiasts. Finally, my favorite shopping mall is Sihlcity. Don’t miss to have a break at Osteria Leonardo there!
What are some of the best places to relax?
For wellness and spa retreats, I go to Asia Spa at Sihlcity, Thermalbad Zurich in the Hürlimann Areal, or Stadtbad (near Volkshaus). Around the lake, there are many other places to recharge both in- and outdoors, especially when you can get some sun in the summer. Some public swimming bathes by the way are open during the winter, as well – Seebad Enge, for example, where you can enjoy a nice sauna session when it’s cold outside.
When is the best time to visit Zurich, and why?
Zurich is a year-round destination. In the summer, it’s always nice to jump into the lake, and the Alps provide the perfect setting for all kinds of winter sports just an hour’s drive away.
What are some events visitors should be sure not to miss in Zurich?
In Art on Ice, freestyle.ch, Weltklasse Zürich, and the Street Parade, the city offers a number of top events every year. Most major concert tours come through Zurich, as well (check www.ticketcorner.ch). A performance at Zurich Opera House or a classical concert at Tonhalle are also great ways to spend an evening. For sport enthusiasts, there are top teams in football (Grasshopper Club Zurich; and FC Zurich) and ice hockey (ZSC Lions; and Kloten Flyers). It’s always fun to cheer on one of our local teams live!