In the Valley of Vals
With a population of 1,000 people, about 1,000 daily visitors and more than 1,000 sheep, the small village of Vals, located at an altitude of 1,250 metres, offers an authentic Swiss alpine-feeling. Ten years ago, a strong urge to live near nature and fresh air spurred a Swiss-Danish couple to move to Vals where they would eventually end up opening an intimate design pension.
After moving to Vals, the owners, Ruth and Thomas stumbled upon a chalet from the 18th-century which triggered more than their immediate curiosity as it had the potential of being more than just their ‘private home’.
Today, the 18th-century chalet houses a small luxury pension, named after the stone bridge just across the road, Brücke 49. Next door, Ruth also runs the shop Brücke Butik where she promotes a selection of Danish brands.
When designing the pension, a communal kitchen was a must for the guests to prepare their own food, just like at home. In the Vipp kitchen, guests will find a fridge stuffed with local milk, yogurt, butter and cheese, while local redwines and choclates are ready to be devoured at the kitchen counter.
Choosing a Vipp kitchen to match the poetic and comfortable feeling of the interior was not difficult for the couple: “It’s a unique kitchen, which you can’t get anywhere else. Its industrial look matched the traditional and rustic rooms perfectly, adding a sleeker look. Every detail is thought through; even the drawer handles have a nice feeling and it’s easy to apply – it truly is plug’n’play,” says Thomas.
Guests are welcomed with homemade breakfast in the communal kitchen every morning. Here, they sit by a long table, eating freshly baked bread and drinking coffee while getting to know each other.
Alpine meets Scandinavian
With a mixture of Alpine architecture and Scandinavian design, Brücke 49 offers the guests an experience of an interplay between the hotel and the living space showroom, where it is possible to order furniture straight from Thomas and Ruth.
Meet the owners
Having worked in the fashion- and advertising industry for two decades, Ruth and Thomas pulled the plug back in Denmark and moved to Vals about 10 years ago. Originally from Switzerland, Ruth felt like coming back to her roots while her husband, Thomas, needed a career change after working for more than 20 years in advertising.