Interlaken, Grand Hotels Victoria and Jungfrau

These are two palatial and beautifully designed hotels, built of fine materials and set in lovely gardens. Even with the huge increases in personal incomes in the past century, we cannot provide this level of luxury for more than a small fraction of society to enjoy. There is, however, no reason we cannot provide this level of quality in public spaces that everyone can enjoy. It is a terrible indictment of western society that very few nations choose to do so.

This hotel is still there today, in nearly the same form, although an ugly portico has been added. . . for cars, of course. What's worse is that the beautiful gardens have been sacrificed to a street widening. It's still a five-star spa resort, though, with prices to match.

This would have been a peaceful setting indeed at the time the photograph was taken. Today, one might rather not sit in the afternoon sun because of the cars streaming past just a few meters away.

Please Wait
City Design Home

Text ©2001-2002 J.Crawford