VBefore the death from frostbite, the body mobilizes the last energy reserves and sends a wave of comforting warmth into the limbs of the doomed person. It’s a moment of near-perfect happiness before it comes to an end. Such a state of transition into the unknown seems to be found in Switzerland for all those who earn their money with guests from near and above all from far – in the country in which alpine tourism was invented in the century before last and its early one The attraction owed not least to mountaineering dramas on icy heights.
One of them is Bernard Müller, owner of the Hotel Bären in Wilderswil and president of the Hotelierverein Interlaken, the place in the face of the 4158 meter high Jungfrau, which, thanks to lakes, mountains, historic old town and Belle Époque hotels, has good reason to say that to bundle all the beauty of Switzerland in one place. Overseas guests accounted for almost sixty percent of overnight stays there in 2019, more than anywhere else in Switzerland. These guests no longer exist. Although they never played a major role in Müller’s cozy forty-five-room house built in 1706, the situation is still precarious: “We won’t survive a second lockdown,” says Müller.