The Cambrian

Adelboden, Swiss Alps, Switzerland
Book from GBP Book from £224 per night

The Cambrian

Adelboden, Swiss Alps, Switzerland

Cool spa hotel high in a pretty village with fabulous mountain views - sun terrace, sitting room and swimming pool all look the right way

Cool spa hotel high in a pretty village with fabulous mountain views - sun terrace, sitting room and swimming pool all look the right way

Adelboden sits at the end of a wide valley surrounded by forested mountains. It’s a great little place for some Alpine fun, not least because of the wonders that wait inside The Cambrian. This is a stylish design hotel, though walls of glass everywhere draw your vision away from cool interiors and out into the valley beyond. Expect striking slate walls in reception, open fires and contemporary art, a glass pod that doubles as a sitting room with rather good views, then a hot pool below the terrace from which you can gaze on the valley. If you want to be busy in the mountains during the day and return to the lap of luxury at night, you’ll love it.

And out on the mountain you’ll find excellent skiing - the FIS World Cup passes through in the second week of January – while summer is no less exhilarating, with hiking and biking trails to suit all levels. Back at the hotel, the most enticing spa ever offers some well-earned recuperation – indoor and outdoor pools, saunas, and treatments galore. Bedrooms above have lots of style: low-slung beds, crisp white linen and thick duvets. Many have balconies, those at the back have the view, while bigger rooms have sofas, too. There’s a cool little bar, a sociable restaurant with a la carte and set menus, and a charming village to enjoy when you're on a break from the slopes.

Highs

  • The spa, with its outdoor pool and big views over the valley, makes a great spot to unwind after a day in the mountains
  • The range of activities, and its position in the middle of town, make The Cambrian a great year-round base
  • South-facing bedrooms with balconies and views over the valley are hard to beat
  • The free shuttle bus to the gondola at the bottom of the village saves trekking with all your ski gear
  • The landscape here is deeply beautiful, a picture-book pretty Alpine resort - we couldn't believe it was real

Lows

  • This is Switzerland – design hotels with chic spas don’t come cheap!
  • The outside pool isn’t huge and it can get busy, though it's connected to the indoor pool and spa area so there's plenty of space
  • The restaurant gets very busy in high season so best to pre-book

Best time to go

If you want to see the FIS World Cup, come in the second week in January, though be warned - the population of Adelboden inflates from about 4,000 people to nearer 40,000.

Like most skiing resorts, the lifts close in early May and don’t reopen until June, then the lifts close again in early October until early December. However, prices are at their lowest when the lifts are shut, those who prefer looking at mountains rather than going up them may well want to come during these periods.

Our top tips

For something romantic and a little different, head up the mountain one evening for a candlelit fondue dinner in an igloo.

Great for...

Family
Foodie
Great Outdoors
Spa
  • Boutique Hotel
  • 72 rooms
  • Restaurant & bar meals (daily)
  • All ages welcome
  • Open all year
  • Pools
  • Spa Treatments
  • Beach Nearby
  • Pet Friendly
  • Disabled Access
  • Car not necessary
  • Parking
  • Restaurants Nearby
  • WiFi
  • Air Conditioning
  • Guest Lounge
  • Terrace
  • Garden
  • Gym
  • Pool Table
  • Bicycles Available
Room:

Rooms

Lovely rooms and suites come in the same smart style – natural tones, clean lines, woollen day blankets created especially for The Cambrian. Chic bathrooms have creamy mosaic tiles, lovely walk-in power showers, exclusive toiletries by Grown Alchemist, and robes to pad about in.

The big 3 factors to consider are: the view; the size of the room; and whether it has a balcony. More than half the rooms overlook the valley – sometimes Deluxe Rooms do, sometimes Junior Suites don’t, so it’s not just the type of room (or price) that decides this, though south-facing rooms are your best bet (and worth the premium). It’s the same with balconies – some rooms at the front have them, some rooms at the back don’t, and while the view at the back is infinitely more impressive, the view at the front over town and up the mountain isn't bad either. In short, prepare to pay more for a bigger room, a little more for a balcony or a view, and a little more again for both.

Deluxe Rooms may be the smallest rooms, but they’re stylish and several have balconies and the view. Junior Suites are altogether bigger, about twice the size, with sofas and armchairs in the sitting area, too. Family Suites have a second room for children (sometimes on a mezzanine), and they’re up in the eaves with cathedral ceilings and white-painted beams. We stayed in one of these on our last visit and were blown away by the view from our balcony in the morning.

The Cambrian Suite is awesome, with 3 balconies, 2 bathrooms (one with a bath) and a separate living room, while the top of the line Snowdon Suite has panoramic views from the master bedroom as well as a twin and a single, each with their own ensuite, plus a separate living room.

Features include:

  • Bathrobes
  • Central heating
  • Coffee / tea making
  • Cots available
  • Hairdryer
  • Minibar
  • Radio
  • Safe box
  • TV
  • WiFi

Eating

Breakfast (included in the price) is served downstairs in the smart restaurant, or on the terrace in good weather. It’s a help-yourself buffet with fruit salad, muesli, freshly baked bread and croissants, plates of cheese and ham, bacon, eggs and smoked salmon if you’re hungry.

Cool little AXE Bar, located just off the lobby, offers a snack menu for light bites throughout the day, and is the perfect place for après-ski cocktails or aperitifs.

Dinner in Bryn Williams at The Cambrian is the main event, and in summer you can eat on the terrace with the valley spread out before you. The ingredients are as local as possible, and menus - choose between a la carte or a 3- or 5-course tasting menu - showcase Swiss and Welsh influences. Our 3-course set menu featured curried sweetcorn veloute, a succulent sharing steak and a deconstructed muscovado cheesecake that we couldn't stop talking about.

If you want to eat out, there are some good restaurants to try, though most are likely to involve a combination of cow bells, wood cabins or cheese fondues! For the latter try the lovely rustic Alte Taverne; Alpenblick, located next door to the hotel, has a casual bistro at the front and Michelin-starred cuisine at the back; or for special occasions head to Restaurant Hohliebe-Stubli, located a little out of town but definitely worth the trip. Restaurants are popular in the skiing season, so book ahead.

Features include:

  • Bar
  • Kids' meals
  • Restaurant
  • Restaurants nearby
  • Room service
Eating:
Activity:

Activities

  • The Swiss love to play on their mountains and Adelboden is no exception, with a full menu of Alpine activities, from plain old skiing and snowboarding to snow tubing, cross-country skiing and tobogganing, or even snowshoeing (winter hiking) or climbing up an ice face. The 72 ski lifts serve 210km of pistes and the winter ski pass covers all areas, with good reductions for families. In town you can go skating, try your hand at curling, or watch the ice hockey
  • The locals' appetite for mountain adventure is undiminished in summer. Hiking is excellent - don’t miss the Engstligenalp and its spectacular waterfalls, or the Aeugi-Lowa trail for its magnificent high Alpine views. There’s something to suit every level, with blisteringly beautiful landscapes of soaring peaks, waterfalls, deep gorges, flower-strewn meadows, the odd hanging bridge
  • The hotel's spa is a big attraction and comes with a cool indoor pool and a hot outdoor pool with jaw-dropping views across the valley. There’s a steam room and sauna, then 5 separate rooms with a vast range of treatments on offer (facials, manicures, body scrubs and massages)
  • Mountain biking is popular, with over 80km of signposted trails - you can even bike down the FIS World Cup course. There’s family fun on scooters, too, with 45km of downhill runs, pony trekking, even llama trekking
  • Or you can try your hand at mountain climbing, abseiling, hang-gliding, paragliding or zip-wiring across the river. There are guided tours of the valley and its villages, too, and ski tours in winter, with a stop for a good lunch on the way
  • For something less adrenalin-inducing, try their cello yoga, where a live cellist accompanies your flow against a mountain backdrop

Activities on site or nearby include:

  • Hiking
  • Ice skating
  • Mountain biking
  • Paragliding
  • Plantlife / flora
  • Pool table
  • Private guided tours
  • Skiing
  • Snowshoeing
  • Snowsports
  • Trekking
  • Well being

Kids

Children are very welcome, and babysitting is available on request (extra charge). However, the hotel does have a grown-up vibe. There’s a stylish children’s room in the basement with a climbing frame and games. Ski school is available, and there are lots of family-friendly activities on offer in the valley in summer. Adelboden itself is accessible, and popular with Swiss families yet pleasingly not too hectic. The Cambrian is located in town so has good proximity to retail and sports facilities.

Best for:

All ages

Family friendly accommodation:

The best options for families are the bi-level Family Suites which have 2 bedrooms (1 double, 1 twin), and extra beds can be added to the Junior Suites

Cots Available, Extra Beds Available, Family Rooms

Children's meals:

There's a special children's menu, which changes seasonally

Kids Activities on site:

  • Kids' room with climbing frame
  • Pool table for older kids
  • Games
  • Heated indoor swimming pool

Kids Activities nearby:

  • Skiing
  • Sledging
  • Ice skating
  • Build your own igloo
  • Swiss Snow Kids' Village
  • Horse riding
  • Climbing/bouldering
  • Adventure park
  • Downhill scootering
  • Cycling

Families Should Know:

There is a grown-up vibe so note that there's limited space for kids to run around, and the pool has restricted hours for children

Distances:

  • Airport: 2 hours (Basel)
  • Hospital: 20 minutes (Frutigen)
  • Shops: 2 minutes
Kid Friendly:

Location

The Cambrian is in the Alpine town of Adelboden, in the Bernese Oberland in Switzerland. The hotel sits high on the hill in the centre of the village, with big views south over a wide mountain valley, and within walking distance of the ski lifts.

By Air:
Fly into Bern (65km, the closest airport) if you can, or one of Basel-Mulhouse-Freiburg (Euroairport) / Zurich / Geneva (all around 170-200km, but served by more flights).

From the Airport
Take a taxi, take the train or hire a car.

By Car:
You're an hour from Bern and about 3 hours from Basel, Zurich or Geneva. Speed cameras are everywhere, and will fine you if you go even 1km/h over the limit, so beware! See our car rental recommendations. Valet parking is available at the hotel, charged by the day.

By Train:
The nearest railway station is Frutigen. From here you can take the bus to Adelboden Post, located just across the street from the hotel.

Detailed directions will be sent to you when you book through i-escape.

Airports:

  • Bern-Belp 62.0 km BRN
  • Basel-Mulhouse-Freiburg 166.0 km BSL

Other:

  • Beach 350.0 km
  • Shops 0.1 km
  • Restaurant 0.1 km

Our guests' ratings...

Based on 1 independent review from i-escape guests

10/10
Room
10/10
Food
10/10
Service
10/10
Value
10/10
Overall

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Rates for The Cambrian

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