Switzerland. Interlaken. The Balmer’s Resort. The turn of the twentieth century exposed Europe to a variety of ambitious dreams. Much of the dreams resulted in war and divided nations. However, the country of Switzerland had other plans in mind, and in action. At least for Frida and Adolf Balmer.
The two began serving others as they housed family members and many friends passing through the area. Different from dominant forces invading much of Europe, the Balmers focus was service to Switzerland. “Touristenheim” –meaning tourist house—housed its first residents in 1907.
The now third generation family operation has housed thousands of residents seeking extreme thrills from the top of Europe to this day. Beginning in the 1950s, the Balmer family served British school groups visiting the Swiss Alps to hike and learn more about culture different from their own in England
“Touristenheim” now takes the name “Balmer’s Resort” and has grown from 50 rooms, to 350 rooms. With the help of the Balmer family, Interlaken continues to grow as a number one spot for European travel destinations.
Personally, many of my friends have had the opportunity to travel to Interlaken and shortly discover that it’s a place unlike any other traveling experience. Megan Monsees said, “Oh, it’s surely a place unlike any I’ve ever been to.” She said, if she could, she’d stay there forever.
Balmer’s has more than just bunked beds and bathrooms. According to many that stay at the hostel, Balmer’s has a Biergarten and Restaurant for many to end their days as they exchange stories and watch the sun go down behind the Switzerland mountains in the distance. Yeah, that’s the Swiss Alps. Imagine that panoramic view as you chow down a burger and wash it down with one of the domestically brewed lagers.
After the sun goes down, I’ve heard one might want to stick around and commit to a night at the Metro Bar and Nightclub. The beats are deep. Apparently, visiting artists and DJs take the stage for tenants to unleash and socialize with each other. Is there any better way to spend a night in Interlaken? For many, including familiar faces I know, it’s an easy “No.”
Countless times they’ve dreamt of going back. Yeah, they went skiing, they bungee-jumped, and some went canyoning through the breaks in the mountains and valleys.
But the most accommodating and unforgettable experience has been the unanimous memory for many. And I feel it’s safe to say it stuck for many since the very beginning of the Balmer’s Resort.
According to close friends, the “Swiss Quality” isn’t remotely similar to domestic items that involve cliché-consuming practices. No, it’s not like the Swiss cheese, Swiss Army knives, or even Swiss Toblerone chocolate.
It’s “Swiss Quality”. And, apparently, it’s lasted for over 100 years sitting at the top of Europe.
And I don’t think it’s going anywhere.
Would you stay here?