In the lovely city of Geneva, you can take the Geneva Watch Tour and be reminded of Swiss watchmaking prowess, not to mention their talent for precision.
In the equally lovely town of Lausanne, a scant 30 miles (50 kilometers) north along the Lake Geneva shore, you can visit the International Olympic Museum and be reminded of the Swiss love of winter sports and the fashionable ski resorts nearby.
But in the charming village of Bursins, halfway between these two high rollers of tourism, is a world of quiet beauty and vineyards with rolling hills more suited to golf than snowboarding and lovely wines known only to the Swiss and their visitors.
Set in this picturesque environment is Chateau Le Rosey, a magnificent 13th-century estate overlooking Lake Geneva and taking in panoramic views of the Swiss Alps and Mont Blanc in France. The main house has been recently remodeled yet continues to reflect the history of its landlocked but well-trod country, surrounded as it is by 11 acres (4.5 hectares) of vineyards inspired by the Romans, who claimed the area more than 2,000 years ago.
The Savoie-style manor has survived centuries of fires, wars, expansions and other intrusions. But step inside through heavy wooden doors and you enter a modern world of comfort and taste, where the old is reflected in retained ribbed arches, sculpted stone staircases and gothic fireplaces. The new is obvious in professional-grade kitchens and wine-tasting rooms with refrigerators.
Within 16,000 square feet (1,500 square meters) are more than 25 rooms arranged over three floors, including 10 bedrooms with ensuite bathrooms, three kitchens, six living rooms, a conference room and library.
There’s also a magnificent chapel and an ultramodern spa worthy of design magazine coverage with a heated pool, Turkish bath, fireplace, kitchenette, changing rooms and showers.
The home is fit for royalty and was perhaps constructed for it so many centuries ago. The recent renovation by the current owners speaks to elegant taste and an unlimited budget.
Also on the 18-acre (73,090-square-meter) property is a garden house that has been transformed into an office with a mezzanine. A separate farmhouse has been remodeled to contain a five-room apartment, two-room apartment, wine press room, vat room and storage spaces.
Chateau Le Rosey is near internationally renowned clinics and schools, and two golf courses. It is a 20-minute drive from Geneva Airport.
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