Suite Life: Bellevue Hotel & Spa, Cogne

Why stay here? 

This wonderful family-owned establishment is now in the capable hands of the fourth generation. While the five-star accommodation and excellent dining offer the perfect base from which to explore Piedmont’s spectacular Gran Paradiso National Park, it is the Bellevue’s famous Spa that is the chief attraction. Two swimming pools, five types of sauna, two Turkish baths, a saline cave, whirlpool bath, frosty space and fitness area are all included for guests. Specialised treatments attract charges.

Rise & shine breakfast time? 

The Cunéaz family care for their guests and the best indication is the food. The buffet breakfast is hearty, delicious and gives you a great start to the day. There is no more inspiring place to take breakfast than on the Terrace overlooking the Meadows of Sant’Orso towards Gran Paradiso Glacier.

What’s for dinner? 

Almost anything would taste good eaten behind the picture windows of the Bellevue Restaurant. However, the chefs ensure the food is equally memorable, such is the succulence of the fresh produce, much of it from the Bellevue’s kitchen garden, and the creativity of the daily-changing menu. Dining can be enjoyed in three venues and you must try some of the best regional cheese from the cheese cellar.

Time out 

Voted Best Hotel Spa in Europe in 2013, the Gran Paradiso Springs wellness centre offers all manner of treatments for face and body. Facial treatments are conducted exclusively with products by Officina Profumo Farmaceutica Santa Maria Novella. Facials start at €80.00 (about A$118).

Wow factor 

It’s the location of this hotel with staggering views across the Valle d’Aosta that really stands out. In summer the hiking is to die for, and in winter, activities such as alpine skiing, icefall climbing and snowshoe excursions offer incredible vistas of the valleys below.

Could do better 

Some may find the cluttered décor of the Bellevue a little bit kitsch, even if the objets d’art are rare, authentic and expensive.

I would like an upgrade 

The self-contained chalet La Cheminée spreads over 90sqm of Alpine opulence, with two rooms, two bathrooms, its own fireplace and jacuzzi (sauna).

Insider tip 

During the summer, guests can visit the hotel’s alpine hut, La Maison à l’Alpage, where once a week the Bellevue chefs decamp to serve delicious grills in front of the magnificent Gran Paradiso Peak. Don’t forget to spend some time in Cogne itself. This quaint mountain town has managed to keep its charm despite the annual tourist influx.

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