MEININGER Hotels starts the season of new openings in May with a market entry: In Zurich, the hotel chain opens its first hotel in Switzerland. A second hotel will follow in June in Geneva, western Switzerland. However, the opening of the 174-room hotel in the sustainable Greencity district on the outskirts of Zurich not only marks the market entry into a new country, but also the start of a total of five new openings in the pandemic year 2021. This growth in existing and new markets is a top priority for MEININGER Hotels, along with digitalisation, streamlining the organisation and sustainability.
Limmat, Lake Zurich, Uetliberg, major banks and watch shops - Switzerland's largest city is known for its beautiful location and proverbial Swiss economy. Despite the high cost of living, Zurich is considered a city with an extremely high quality of life. In addition to chic shops, the city on the Limmat also has a lively art scene and many leisure activities. Anyone who lives here can consider themselves lucky. And so can anyone on holiday here, because Zurich is always worth a trip. "And thanks to MEININGER, there is now also affordable accommodation in Zurich - without compromising on service and comfort," says Doros Theodorou, CCO of MEININGER Hotels. A stroll through the picturesque alleys of the old town takes you past the Lindenhof, the town hall and the Grossmünster. From Bürkliplatz you can enjoy the fantastic view over the lake to the peaks of the Swiss Alps. Those interested in culture can visit the Zurich Opera House, one of the 14 art museums or the Cabaret Voltaire, where Dadaism was born in 1916.
From the sustainable Greencity to the old town in ten minutes
The new MEININGER Hotel Zurich is located at Zurich-Manegg station in the sustainable Greencity district. It takes around ten minutes by S-Bahn to reach the city centre, and 30 minutes to Zurich Kloten Airport. In Greencity, the name says it all: 100 per cent of the supply comes from renewable energy sources, the environmentally friendly mobility concept offers, among other things, two car-sharing locations and ten per cent of the parking spaces are reserved for electric vehicles. "Greencity will develop from a showcase project for sustainable urban neighbourhoods into an established living, working and living space, it will hopefully serve as a model for many more urban building projects and stand for the proof that quality of life and responsibility are very compatible," says Theodorou. Already, new restaurants, cafés, shops and flats - all sharing the same sustainable vision - are continuously springing up in the green district. And on the doorstep are the green slopes of the Sihl Valley, with their extensive hiking trails inviting visitors to beautiful excursions into the Swiss mountains.
Where Dadaism complements the hybrid concept
The new hotel building, designed by the renowned Zurich architectural firm Gigon/Guyer, has 174 rooms with a total of 582 beds on six floors. True to the MEININGER hybrid concept, there are twin, 3-, 4- and 6-bed rooms. Of course, the new hotel - in keeping with its location - has been awarded the LEED Platinum and greenproperty Silber sustainability certifications. The interior design was inspired by the art style of Dadaism. Unusual furniture, decorations and design elements allude to the art movement of the early 20th century, which is intended to promote uninhibited fantasy and express irrationality. As in every MEININGER hotel, there is also a guest kitchen in Zurich, a game zone with foosball
table, washing machine, dryer, luggage room, free wifi, a bar and various card and board games to borrow. By the way: although you can spend a lot of money eating, drinking and shopping in Zurich, the prices at the new MEININGER Hotel are kept within limits. One night in a double room costs from 43 euros per person, in a dormitory from 21 euros.
Affordable solutions for increased demand
As to why MEININGER decided to enter the Swiss market, the company's CCO, Doros Theodorou, explains: "In recent years, a lot of supply has entered the Zurich hotel market, putting pressure on prices and occupancy rates. The creation of new demand generators, such as urban development projects in Zurich West and Europaallee, as well as growing passenger volumes at Zurich Airport, caused demand to grow. This trend will continue despite the pandemic. The long-term outlook is positive. Furthermore, with our product we are tapping into new guest segments for whom an overnight stay in Zurich was not very affordable until now. The international reputation as an important financial centre and corporate headquarters as well as the high attractiveness as a tourist destination mean stable prospects in a secure environment. Last but not least, Zurich is a big name especially among American and Asian tourists as well, and these numbers will continue to rise. We have carefully analysed the developments of the Zurich hotel market in recent years and incorporated them into our conservative calculations."
Zurich is followed by Innsbruck, Bordeaux, Geneva and Marseille
The MEININGER Hotel Zurich is the first of its kind in Switzerland. In June, a second hotel will open in Geneva. In France, the new openings of MEININGER Bordeaux and Marseille are scheduled for this year, and in Austria, MEININGER Innsbruck will open in May. "We are looking forward to this year's new openings and plan to continue our ambitious expansion in Europe in the long term," says the CCO of MEININGER Hotels.