Swiss perspectives in 10 languages

High-altitude Swiss mountain restaurant burns down

Flames burn the restaurant on a mountain top.
Firefighters had to be airlifted to the restaurant to control the blaze. Canton Vaud police

A restaurant built 3,000 metres above sea level in the Swiss Alps, and a favourite destination for tourists, has been partially destroyed by fire.

Police have launched an investigation to determine the cause of the blaze that consumed the Botta de Glacier 3000 eatery on Monday.

+ The macabre secrets of Switzerland’s melting glaciers

The building was empty at the time it caught fire and no-one is believed to have been hurt.

Situated above Glacier 3000 at Les Diablerets in French-speaking canton Vaud, the restaurant was designed by renowned Swiss architect Mario Botta. It is a popular stopping-off place for skiers before they tackle the glacier slopes.

Opened in 2001, the construction took 70 builders some 10 months to complete at a cost of CHF17 million ($17.6 million).

Because of its difficult location, firefighters had to ascend using three helicopters from Air Glacier and Rega. They were assisted in the operation by members of local alpine clubs, said Vaud police.

The upper part of the building, including the restaurant, appears to have been destroyed. A cable car giving access to the building is being tested for damage.

The Blick newspaper on Tuesday said the restaurant is co-owned by former Formula 1 boss Bernie Ecclestone. “We don’t know if it was arson,” he said.



In compliance with the JTI standards

More: SWI certified by the Journalism Trust Initiative

You can find an overview of ongoing debates with our journalists here . Please join us!

If you want to start a conversation about a topic raised in this article or want to report factual errors, email us at

SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR

SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR