4.0
Very Good 376 Reviews
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This Hotel meets our standards
Our editors have been here and it has met our standards

What We Love

  • The location: just steps from the Water Tower Bridge, Lake Lucerne and the KKL Culture and Convention Centre
  • Jean Nouvel’s modern (and tasteful) design
  • Garden or park views from most of the spacious rooms
  • Traditional Swiss service in an informal, high-design setting
  • Just a five-minute walk from the shores of Lake Lucerne and other city sights
  • The Lounge Bar and its panoramic windows
  • Free WiFi

What To Know

  • There is a two-night minimum required for the Deluxe Studio
  • Rooms have ceilings or walls adorned with slightly erotic scenes from feature films
  • No spa or fitness centre
  • Smoking is not permitted
  • Valet parking costs approximately £25 per night
  • Transfers by train take one hour from Zurich and three hours from Geneva

Amenities

  •  Bar
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Architecture Boutique Exterior color light Lobby lighting

Overview

The Review

On the ceiling above my bed in Lucerne’s The Hotel is a gauzy image of John Malkovich and Michelle Pfeiffer from the film Dangerous Liaisons. Washed in sepia tones, it is one of the many (slightly provocative) film stills that adorn the walls and ceilings of this trailblazing art hotel — and the first of many playfully edgy aspects of French architect Jean Nouvel’s unique design.

Built in 2000 as a collaboration between hotelier Urs Karli and the celebrated Parisian architect, the Hotel occupies a conventional early-20th-century apartment building in a hip residential area. Just five minutes from Lucerne’s train station, the shores of Lake Lucerne and all the major tourist attractions, the Hotel redefines the notion of a traditional Swiss hotel, mixing elegance and superior service with a more casual setting.{“type”:”img-inline”,”src”:”/static/images/product/properties/1811/prop-22228-1317927813-full.jpg”,”width”:”275″,”caption”:”In sleek red and black, French-Asian fusion restaurant Bam Bou is a city hot spot.”}

But what’s truly inspiring (especially to architecture aficionados) is the chance to experience Nouvel’s top-to-bottom design. The understated exterior opens into a wide, open lobby made dreamlike by mirrors and huge windows, while upstairs the deliberately basic, even industrial, corridors contrast with the clean lines, warm palette and sexy furnishings in the guestrooms and suites. Innovations like movable modular closets are interesting high-design touches. Nouvel had a hand in every aspect of the property, down to the custom-made furnishings.

Downstairs there are six restaurants and two bars on-site, including the French-Asian fusion restaurant Bam Bou. I prefer the hovering Lounge Bar, an assemblage of black and saffron with a fondness for cube furniture; it’s an ideal place to sip champagne and admire the scenes of stylish Lucerne just outside.

How to Get There

The Hotel
Sempacherstrasse 14
Lucerne, 6002 Switzerland

Reviews

4.0 Very Good 376 Reviews
Would stay here again!
Reviewed 4 months ago

This hotel is located at a 10-minute walk (or 2 minute busride) from the central station in Luzern and the city centre, which is ideal if you want to go sightseeing in Luzern or visit the mountains around it. The hotel itself is clean and proper. I had a single room with shared bathroom facilities, but both were very clean so I didn't mind that I had to share toilet and shower with other guests on the fourth floor. The breakfast is very basic, but ok. The staff is very friendly. Although the hotel might be quite expensive for a basic room, keep in mind that everything in Switserland is very expensive so this hotel is quite a good deal. When I return to Luzern, I will definitely stay here again. Nice room, clean and a good walking distance from the city center! Tip: I stayed in room 414, which has a balcony and a mountainview and is located at the end of the hall so minimal noise from other travellers. I can really recommend this room to others.

Good value for money
Reviewed 4 months ago

Hotel Alpha at the intersection of Zähringerstrasse & Pilatusstrasse is located in a leafy, residential area & is about a 10-minute walk from Luzern railway station. It has 47 well-appointed rooms, many with attached baths. Has a comfy lounge & a pretty dining room that serves breakfast with colorful boiled eggs(see pics). The nearby Pizza & Kebab Haus on the main road offers great takeaway Donear Kebabs at throwaway prices. All in all, great value for money in the pricey tourism capital of Switzerland.

Beautiful hotel, great staff
Reviewed 7 months ago

Clean and organized hotel. Wifi was working well. I got a beautiful balcony as requested during booking. Breakfast option was adequate. Shared baths are clean and I never had to queue on both days I stayed in. Staff were very helpful especially Patrick and the ladies at the breakfast room.
It’s quite a walk from Lucerne’s train station - around 10-15 minutes if you walk fast like I do. Longer if you don’t. It’s okay but quite challenging if you have luggages with you. Otherwise, you can take any of the buses from the train station that stops at Pilatusplatz (2 stops away). Walls and room divisions are all made of wood and so every step or movement that anyone makes creates noise. Not a big deal though. I still find the hotel recommendable overall.

Good experience
Reviewed 8 months ago

When I arrived to check in, it was discovered I booked a single room when I needed a double. My travel plans had changed and I forgot to contact them to change my reservations;definitely my own fault. The guy at reception was able to get us a room with another bed. I could tell my mistake irritated him a bit but I appreciated him finding us another room. The room was very adequate and clean with comfortable beds. The shared bathroom had two private shower stalls and a toilet stall that was quite clean. Breakfast was included and it was quite nice. The location of the hotel is pretty great; out of the way from the busy areas but close enough to walk to plenty of places.

Away from the hustle and bustle
Reviewed 9 months ago

The staff were genuinely hospitable. Hotel Alpha has clean rooms and good breakfast in a quiet neighbourhood. The lady manning the breakfast was very EFFICIENT in her job. I appreciate her sense of duty.

The floor squeaks especially on the hall. I find the shared WC (toilet and bathroom) inconvenient. The hotel should have installed small WC in each private room. The hotel should provide a fan in each private room as the summer heat is really warm.