Geneva, home to luxury watches, chocolate, the United Nations, Red Cross, the World Health Organization and, believe it or not to the World Wide Web (created in a laboratory in the city!) is also home to countless number of sumptuous hotels where the creme of the crop retreats.
This past weekend, I was fortunate to experience one of those hotels, La Réserve. There, my entire body and soul indulged in pure Bliss – I tasted the most delectable meals, got drunk off the soothing and intoxicating scents of the hotel, relaxed and got pampered at the spa. Basically I got to bask in total opulence for two entire days!
The weather was gloomy and a predictor of what lies ahead – Fall! And although I had been looking forward to one last chance of laying outside in the sun and bathing in the olympic size swimming pool, I was also keen on fully immersing myself in the mood of the season.
From the moment we drove into the hotel’s commune, I could tell that I was in for a treat. As we entered the hotel, we got treated with the most upmost respect and warmth by our host Justine as well as the staff. I was worried that the atmosphere would be stale and stuffy given the pedigree of the hotel and its location. But to my surprise and enchantment, not only was it not sterile but to the contrary, I immediately felt at ease and almost at home. The colors are warm and the decor soulful. There is also a natural flow to the interior which adds to the cozy factor. Needless to say, my first impressions were nothing but positive. I was so excited to discover the rest and see what was in store for me!
La Réserve counts 73 rooms and 29 Suites, five restaurants, a health spa and countless other amenities. Michel Reybier’s (owner of hotel) vision was to bring a piece of the world inside and help his guests be transported to a universe where imagination prevails. Parisian Interior Designer Jacques Garcia brought Mr Reybier’s vision to life with his personal signature – a refined style of African lodges.
A spacious suite, along with champagne and a beautiful basket of fruit were waiting for us! Our Suite opened wide onto the park. One of the most interesting and unique feature was the pillow selection. We were given a choice of pillows in case the ones we had didn’t agree with us! The sheets, Egyptian cotton, made waking up almost impossible – perfect for romantic gateaways 🙂
OUR DINNING EXPERIENCE
Lunch – Cafe Lauren
The concept, designed by Chef Eric Canino is: Healthy Living = Healthy Cooking and Eating.
You won’t find butter at Cafe Lauren! – only delicate, delicious olive oil is used. Every single dish blends perfectly the pleasures of the palate with healthy cooking. But as Chef Nathalie Nguyen noted to me, healthy living does not mean dieting or eating boring!
Our menu had been especially designed to fit our dietary needs – gluten and carb free! I must admit that I couldn’t resist the home-baked bread they served but I was able to keep it to two slices 🙂 The rest was super healthy and tasty. I actually ate much more than I would normally consume over lunch. Happy tummy 🙂
Dinner – The Tsé Fung
What a delightful and surprising dinner it ended up being! I must admit that generally Chinese food is not my favorite because I find it greasy and heavy to digest. But I was told by a few people that the experience would totally change my mind about Chinese cuisine. And to make it even more appealing, Chef Franck Xu prepared a special menu to fit our dietary requirements – but deviations were allowed 🙂
The ambiance, decor, service were stellar and the food was not only a tease for the eyes but also a dream for the palate. Every bite had its own merit. There was one appetizer I didn’t care too much for because of its chewy texture but it didn’t affect the overall feeling of satisfaction and happiness.
The newly appointed Chef Frank Xu is doing a tremendous job at introducing his clientele to Chinese classics revisited with his personal cooking methods and subtlety.
Drinks – The Bar
The pictures speak for themselves! The DJ was spinning and the crowd enjoying the tunes, each-other and of course their cocktail 🙂
Lunch – The Bar
After a morning spent at the Spa and the gym, we weren’t quite ready to leave, especially on an empty stomach. We decided to take our time and enjoy La Réserve a little bit longer. We ordered lunch at The Bar and did people watching. There were all kinds of people (really, all kinds!) enjoying their Sunday.
Our lunch was really good and got us ready for a long drive ahead.
The Nescens Spa is a place where guests can relax in peace and focus on looking and feeling good. Mr Michel Reybier and his staff aspire to coach and motivate their guests by offering them personalized treatments by trained anti-aging specialists.
My journey began on Day one with a super healthy and delicious lunch at Cafe Lauren (described above), followed by a session with Osteopath Yvan for a physical and joint-health evaluation. At the end of the session he gave me recommendations for physical activities or massages, which he also communicated to our personal trainer for Day two. After Yvan, I had time to roam around and take advantage of the pool and Hammam while waiting for my Nescens Better Aging facial with Nicholas.
On Day two, I got in shape with a fitness coach who had personalized my session according to what the Osteopath had advised her. I learned so many great tips! The gym itself was quite impressive – fully equipped with state-of-the-art equipments from technogym, Kinesis, to pilates. I wish I had more time to try everything. Next time …
This was a weekend that I will not forget. I really hope to go back again soon and try out all the treats I didn’t have time to indulge in.
Til next time….
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