We asked Mina Bayat, Chef Concierge at Four Seasons Hotel des Bergues Geneva, to gather the savviest sight-seeing suggestions she could find—not just her own, but also those of other local connoisseurs, including some she works with every day at the Hotel. Dotted with gardens and parks and set alongside Europe’s largest Alpine lake, Geneva is a compact city with a rich history, and home to a host of international organisations such as the United Nations, the World Health Organization and the International Committee of the Red Cross.
Dine at Exceptional Restaurants
For French cuisine, the best spots in town are Auberge de Floris and Domaine de Châteauvieux, which has two Michelin stars. Auberge d’Onex has great Italian cuisine and a friendly and caring staff. In Lausanne (a short 50-minute car ride away), there are two fantastic spots that have each earned three Michelin stars: Benoît Violier (formerly Philippe Rochat) and Anne-Sophie Pic at Beau-Rivage Palace.
Shop at the Finest Stores
The best store for her is Bon Génie, a department store where you may find everything from lingerie to high-brand dresses to shoes and accessories. This high-end department store includes brands such as Christian Louboutin, Charivari, Delaneau and L’Arcade. Top shops for him include Basil and Zilli for clothes, and John Lobb and Winston for shoes. You can also do some window-shopping at the Hotel with displays from Van Cleef & Arpels, Chaumet, Montblanc, Breguet, De Grisogono, Roger Dubuis and other fine brands.
Explore Galleries and Museums
Opera Gallery features great artists such as Fernando Botero, Salvador Dalí, Marc Chagall and others. Gallery Bel-Air Fine Art boasts great contemporary artists such as Alfonso Borghi and David LaChapelle. The Gagosian Gallery is another must-see, and the Patek Philippe Museum is the finest museum about watch manufacturing in the world.
Take Home a Swiss Souvenir
Cruise the Lake at Night
The best thing to do after dark is to take an evening dinner cruise on a private vessel or on a steamboat and enjoy the city lights and landscapes.
Take in the Scenery
With its majestic Alps, lovely lake and Old World architecture, Geneva boasts some impressive scenery. The views are stunning at the “Byron Stone” in Cologny, from the top of the Saint-Pierre Cathedral, from the restaurant Le Lion D’Or and from the top of the Salève.