The InterContinental Davos opened at the end of 2013 and in time for the World Economic Forum in January. Guess we just missed mingling with big wigs like Bono and a bunch of politicians. Because that’s the kind of hotel this is, a playground for the super elite.
Although for 50,000 points anyone can pretend to be super elite. Swim in an outdoor heated pool, be shuttled to the finest ski slopes in the alps, enjoy spectacular views from your balcony (because every room has one), or eat at fine hotels… if you bring your entire savings.
From the inside the hotel is modern, new and immaculate. It’s hard not to compare it to the other mountain-resort InterContinental, also in the Alps – the InterContinental Berchtesgaden. The IC Berchtesgaden has a more warm Bavarian feel – it’s more wooden and homey. The IC Davos is more modern and obviously, more Swiss.
The treatment for Royal Ambassadors is very generous. We were with friends and had two rooms. Both rooms were upgraded to Club rooms, giving access to the club lounge, but one of our rooms was also the incredible Alpine Executive Suite.
This hotel also swept me away with its facilities. Each room’s bathroom has heated tiles. The pool has an automatic glass door leading outdoors, where the outdoor pool is heated to a surprisingly comfortable heat, despite the cold winter air.
On one hand the actual lounge itself was the nicest IC lounge I think I’ve seen. It’s large and chic. But the evening “hor dourves” leave a lot to be desired. They have the same tiny pastries they keep out all day and then just bring out a few extra hot snacks. Snacks might even be a generous word to use given the tiny portion sizes. If you’ve been to the lounge once you’ve seen it all, so I can’t imagine who is paying $200+ more for this upsell. Even the evening drink selection was just decent, as well as the champagne.
Still, can’t complain as they gave us all free breakfast in the restaurant as an RA perk. Huge benefit as food is so expensive in Davos (and in Switzerland in general).
Davos and getting there/around
We rented a car and drove up from Como, Italy. Given the warm weather in Italy at the time it was unreal driving through such deep snow. I’ve never seen snow that high in my life. At one point it was towering over the car and yet somehow the roads were completely clear and dry.
The town of Davos is tiny and still expensive.
Switzerland is by far the most expensive country I’ve been to. Stopping for a bite to eat can run you $30 a plate. And I don’t mean $30 a plate for cordon bleu with a fine wine, I mean for spaghetti and water. So the restaurant prices here are astronomical, although that’s true for any luxury hotel…
Despite having a car we were still forced to pay the city tax (on top of the points) so we could have “complimentary” access to the public transport which runs from the hotel to town. Although Davos is tiny and the hotel overlooks it, it’s enough of a walk that I would take the bus to get to the center of town, at least with the snow. This part is nickle and dimey to me and not appreciated; it’s a bunch of bologne that they contracted with the city. Why not just have people buy their own bus passes, that way only people who want it pay for it?
But the IC Berchtesgaden does the same thing, so you may notice a ton of similarities.
Over all I may prefer the IC Berchtesgaden for a number of reasons. Both are so similar though and have the most suck up staffs I’ve ever seen in my life. Although neither feel very genuine (except for IC Davos’ excellent/more down to earth club lounge staff lady), the IC Berchtesgaden feels a little more real and kind with a purpose. For instance Carrie asked about a local dish we really liked and mentioned she wanted to try cooking it at home. Later we discovered that the lady at the front desk found and translated the recipe and then sent it to our room.
But then again, maybe rich people prefer robots serve them (robots who compliment you). Although, this is just an overall vibe, I did “catch” the guy who checked me out laugh at me for coming back after learning that the road over the mountain was closed for snow. Weird. Anyways…
The big difference between the InterContinental Davos and Berchtesgaden are the towns themselves. Davos is for adventure, Berchtesgaden is for being secluded in nature. The ski slopes in Davos are world renowned and the hotel has a free shuttle to them as well as ski rentals. But for someone not wanting to spend money on adventures and instead wanting to get away, Berchtesgaden is great. Both are kind of isolated but the IC Davos is in town and the IC Bercthesgaden is up on the mountain, albeit the mountains are much smaller.
This is trivial, however, the benefits for Royal Ambassadors are way better at the IC Davos. Not only were we given a suite, and our friends given a club room (with access), but we were all given free breakfast. At the IC Berchtesgaden we were given a slightly better room and basically nothing else, both stays.
The suite was also one of the finer suites I’ve been given (although we let our friends stay in it (not that it matters, I’m writing from an IC suite at the moment)). It was one room but it was extremely spacious, fine and cozy. Plus it has a huge balcony to enjoy the view from.
The regular club rooms were of normal size, and again, all rooms have a balcony. But the bathroom was fantastic – heated floors, a large bathtub with bath salts and such, and a rain shower. But of course, the suite’s bathroom was even larger and better. It had a main bathroom with the tub and sink, plus an attached toilet room and a separate shower room as well.
This hotel is 50,000 IHG points a night. If you’d like to earn IHG points consider the IHG credit card or reading the post on Earning IHG Rewards points on steroids, then look into your Big Win promotion.
Pics from the drive to/from Davos: