Hotel Belvédère: From Cinematic Icon to Instagram Sensation

During a mist-laden visit to the Rhône Glacier in Valais in 2023, Swiss Photographer Patrick Lambertz met Mr. Carlen, the offspring of the family that owns and operates the Rhône Glacier Cave already since the mid 1900s. Being there for a project research, his visit led to a journey within the hallowed walls of the world renowned Hotel Belvédère, also in the possession of Mr. Carlen, that has become an Instagram Superstar. Despite the popularity of the façade of this architectural Icon, Lambertz captured the Interior of the closed building in intimate images.     

„The atmosphere was surreal - like stepping into another time, untouched and preserved. As fog started to cover the hotel's exterior, I was compelled to capture the surreal beauty, the merging of history and the contemporary, framed by nature's artistry.“ Lambertz remembers that special moment.

The Hotel Belvédère, perched majestically near the Furkapass, is not just a relic of a bygone era but a bridge that connects the past with the present. Its iconic shape and unique location, immortalized in the Bond movie "Goldfinger," have seen it transition from cinematic stardom to becoming one of the most sought-after Instagram hotspots. Through the lenses of renowned Instagrammers, its charm has been shared with millions, making it a beacon for the modern explorer. 

In contrast to the fleeting nature of  social media posts, Lambertz‘ iconic portrayal oft he facade as well as the interior, compels you to linger and immerse yourself in its depth. Bringing up memories of vintage tourism posters in its style and coloring. So much so, that it reminds of the style of Wes Anderson movies. The anachronistic charm of the Hotel, combined with a minimalist composition, beckons you to look at it over and over again, offering a new discovery with each glance.

While the hotel's allure remains undiminished, standing resolute against the backdrop of the Furka Pass Road's 180-degree bend and the Alpine horizon, it bears silent testament to the changing times. The once grand Rhône Glacier, which stood proudly at its entrance, retreats daily, a poignant reminder of nature's impermanence and the drastical change of the alpine climate.