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Murren Hotel Eiger or edelweiss & “half board”

Hello! I’m planning a trip in early February with my husband with Murren as a home base, and am trying to decide on a hotel. I have read many trip advisor hotel reviews and looked through the photos.

I've narrowed it down to Hotel Eiger (mountain view double room with balcony) or Hotel Edelweiss (corner superior twin room with balcony, mountain view). Both prices include breakfast and have similar cancellation policies. I know that Eiger is 4* and I believe Edelweiss 3? Both seem to have excellent views from the rooms with ceiling to floor window/sliding doors to balcony and room interiors both look pleasant. I was expecting the Edelweiss offer/price to be significantly less than the Eiger though after reading reviews and getting pricing from some of the other 3 hotels, so I let myself get pretty attached to the view from the Edelweiss and maybe prefer it a bit to the view I've seen from the Eiger (though again, both seem wonderful). However, there is only a 100 CHF price difference between the two total for a 9 night stay. I did request a specific room at Edelweiss that I had read a review on that maybe is not their base rate Room type, so maybe I am comparing a "standard" room rate at Eiger to a "superior" room rate at Edelweiss to explain the price similarity?

Regardless, I am soliciting opinions on hotel preference between the two! Priorities are the view and room interiors, followed by the staff/service and food quality (also taking cost of meals into consideration). My prediction is that I may prefer the view slightly at Edelweiss, while room interiors are similar between the two, with slightly better food/service at Eiger? I am wondering that if prices are so similar, if Eiger is clearly the better choice for the money or if the two hotels are truly comparable.

I have a secondary question about the hotel restaurants and spa services-- if you are staying at one hotel, can you eat in the restaurant of another/use its spa services (of course not for free)? I read a post somewhere that mentioned that the hotel restaurants may be private for guests only for dinner?

Are the half board options really worth it? (For a couple of “foodies” from New Orleans for whom experiencing local food and beverage is one of the best parts of traveling)

Thanks so much for your input.

Posted by
2856 posts

We just had apple strudel at the edelweiss. I would stay there just for that it was so good!!!!! The views from outside were spectacular!!!!!! Right on the edge of the mountain.

Posted by
11493 posts

I will generically address half-board. We love that option but maybe not for 9 nights. In our experience they vary the meals significantly so you don’t get repetition at night (usually breakfast is about the same daily) but they tend to be big meals and we get restaurant fatigue. Still, in Switzerland restaurant dining is very expensive and the half-board is considerably less-expensive than ala carte in a comparable place. Will the hotel let you do half-board some nights? We have had that option in Switzerland so we just tell them in the morning if we plan to dine with them in the evening.

BTW, the Eiger Guesthouse does a decent pizza.

Posted by
497 posts

We have stayed in Wengen now 4 times and we always do half board but we stay at Hotel Schönegg and the chef there is a genius! However for 9 nights?? Not sure. We like the convenience of half board. Will buy sandwiches for lunch and hike, but really nice to not have to hassle with figuring out breakfast and dinner.

Posted by
8650 posts

Don't get hung up on the number of stars. It doesnt mean the same thing in Europe that it means in the US. Hotels are assigned stars based on the services and features they provide, not the level of luxury. For example, a hotel with an elevator will have higher rating than one without.

Posted by
16919 posts

In Muerren, the farther you go from the train station, and the higher up in the village you go, the better the views become. I do not care for the area near the train station (where Hotel Eiger is located) at all—-I would not want to stay there. My favorite hotel in Muerren, for location, views, and for excellent food, is Hotel Bellevue. We dine there by choice even though we are not staying there—-other places we tried were not as good. But I see they are not accepting reservations for winter, so they must not be planning to stay open.

To answer your specific question about dining at hotel where you are not a guest, while we have done that in the past, it may not be possible under the current protocols (covid-related). And I really doubt whether spa services would be available to non-guests, but perhaps someone knows for sure.

The difference between a 3-star and a 4-star hotel in Switzerland has little to do with quality, comfort, or cleanliness. It is based upon the amenities and services offered—-things like spa services, elevators, and swimming pools. I see the Eiger has an indoor pool, so that it what qualifies it for a 4* rating.

I did not recognize the Edelweiss from our visits to Muerren (most recently in 2018), but I see on their website that it was renovated and expanded in 2020, so that explains it. I cannot speak to their food (or the Hotel Eiger food) as we have not dined at either.

I do see that the Edelweiss is right next to Hotel Alpina, on the edge of the cliff. That means great views into the valley and to the peaks across the valley (Eiger, Monch, and Jungfrau). But I will say that a friend who stayed at Hotel Alpina found that dark cliff directly opposite the hotel, right at eye level, rather dark and foreboding. The peaks appear to the left and slightly behind the dark rock wall. You can see this on Google street view if you position the viewpoint off to the side of the Edelweiss itself, by their patio.

Posted by
4600 posts

If you're in the BO and you're in your room enough to notice a lot of differences, you're not really in the BO.

Don't forget there's a Coop for snacks and simple meals.

Posted by
20461 posts

Half board is a great deal with great food. In my experience, you can only switch hotel restaurants if they are jointly owned, and then only with advance reservations. The hotel restaurants only get enough food to feed its own guests.

Normally, at least one night a week they serve fondue or raclette, as it is staff night out and the hotel managers prepare the meal. It is something they can't screw up.

Posted by
7080 posts

9 days of half board is perhaps a bit much. Maybe you could contact the hotels and ask if you could, let's say, have 6 or 7 days of HB and 2 or 3 free dinners?