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Hotel Helvetia, Zurich 

1 Stauffacherquai
Switzerland CH-8004
Tel: 41 44 297 99 99
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From the editors of Condé Nast Traveler:
Perched on the banks of the Sihl River in the hip Kreis 4 neighborhood, the 16-room Hotel Helvetia has become a hub for the city's edgy art community, many of whose members have made the cozy street-level café-bar cum lobby their preferred hangout and also pack the hotel's candlelit restaurant, reached via a sturdy oak staircase, for the comfort food of Zurich native chef Françoise Wicki, a rising culinary star. The hotel, which occupies a circa 1900 apartment building, has fun living up to its tongue-in-cheek motto, "Home Sweet Helvetia," with a new take on Swiss cozy that runs to dove-gray wainscoting and gray-, cream-, and olive-striped wallpaper in most rooms, beds made up with plump duvets, and retro architect's lamps. The friendly young staff create a relaxed, homey atmosphere, and there's a great terrace overlooking the river for good-weather idling.—2010 Hot List

Which room to book: Fourth-floor doubles with river views.

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