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Farewell, Walter Mittler

Posted On: Jan 12, 2020   |   Posted By: Rick Steves

Farewell, Walter Mittler

On New Year's Day 2020, Rick Steves' Europe lost one of our oldest and dearest friends: Walter Mittler, who ran Hotel Mittaghorn in Gimmelwald, Switzerland. Walter, who was in his mid-90s, died peacefully in the hotel that was his home for the last half of his life, in a tiny village surrounded by the wonder of the Swiss Alps.
Gimmelwald is that pristine alpine village that inspired me to say (on my first visit, in my student backpacker days), “If heaven isn't what it's cracked up to be...send me back to Gimmelwald.” For four decades, a big part of the heavenly nature of Gimmelwald was Walter's welcome.
I've long said that my passion as a guidebook writer is to connect people with people, and that my favorite hotels and restaurants are the ones that are “personality-driven.” There was no hotel more “personality-driven” than Walter's Hotel Mittaghorn. In fact, by the power of Walter's passion to house and feed travelers and nature lovers affordably in the pricey Swiss Alps, his hotel was generally known as...

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