Spoiler Alert: This is going to be a rave review… Recently I attended an Incentive Research Foundation (IRF) board meeting at the Beau-Rivage Palace in Lausanne and it changed my perspective on what was already a personal favorite - Switzerland. I learned that when it comes to incentive destinations, Switzerland exceeds expectations.
The Beau-Rivage Palace was built in stages, beginning in 1861, and features Art Nouveau and Neo-Baroque design. Each of the public rooms is unique and sumptuously decorated in an old-world style that is unseen here in the States. Guest rooms are luxurious and comfortable, with fresh flowers and vast windows, many framing the incredible views onto Lake Geneva and the Alps across the water. The entire place exudes calm and quality. The guest room décor – particularly among the many suites – is varied and personal. I have had the good fortune to travel to many grand hotels with my work, and I can honestly say that the Beau-Rivage is impeccable in every way.
But even better was the Beau-Rivage team. While the hotel might come across as stuffy or formal somewhere else, it simply isn’t here. The hospitality of the staff is warm, but not intrusive. Every contact we had with the staff was welcoming and thoughtful, from housekeeping to the general manager.
The cuisine was exceptional. Trust me on this… Best. Dessert. Ever. The Swiss wines were surprising and delicious. And the restaurants were varied, including a Michelin star restaurant and - in the winter - the fun Bubble Bar on the terrace.
Swiss hospitality didn’t end at the hotel, however. Located just 30 minutes from Geneva by train, Lausanne is an excellent jumping off spot to explore many interesting sites. We enjoyed visits to the Olympic Museum next to the hotel where the Olympic flame burns bright on the terrace, as well as to Chaplin’s World, a museum dedicated to the actor/director located at his home the Manoir de Ban a short car ride away. We stopped at the Domaine du Daley for a wine-tasting and discovery of the wine-making process. Each venue provides options for incentive program guests visiting the region.
Later this year, the Next Level Performance team is looking forward welcoming guests of a spectacular incentive program for one of our clients at the Beau-Rivage Palace. I know now that they will not only love the dramatic Swiss landscape, with its breathtaking peaks and lakes. Our guests will also be warmly welcomed into one of the most luxurious experiences of their lives. They will have a wonderful experience that will be remembered for years to come.
As Vice President of Engagement Strategy & Corporate Services at Next Level Performance, Susan serves on the board of the Incentive Research Foundation (IRF), and chairs the IRF Research Committee. She has also served on the board of the Incentive Marketing Association (IMA) and is a past president of the Recognition Council, and a past member of the Performance Improvement Council and the Incentive and Engagement Solution Providers (IESP). She is interested in the strategies and benefits of employee engagement, incentive, and recognition programs. An avid traveler, she is also passionate about the art and science of incentive travel.