An unrelated logistical muddle -- a spam filter turned out to be the culprit – led to my mistakenly removing this review. I am glad to have a chance to repost it:
7 January 2011
This is the first time I have written a review before the end of my stay.
Solothurn may be one of Europe’s most beautiful medieval towns, but I have chosen to stay here and hop on the train to Basel and Bern (each roughly a 45-minute train ride away) for my work in those cities for a single reason: this hotel, which is an unexpected hybrid of ‘boutique’ and old-fashioned family-run establishment.
Okay, I'm here for a whole week because it’s winter and the family running the Zunfthaus zu Wirthen has given me an off-season discount on the most gorgeous room – which I was allowed to choose myself. But the experience so far has been so perfect that I feel as if a magical spell put me here.
Practical people will want to know: the chef turns out delicious and inventive meals at lunch and dinner at prices that seem fair, a rare experience in Switzerland for anyone from less prosperous countries. All the double rooms are spacious and comfortable, and the staff extremely flexible about accommodating all reasonable requests. ... You can walk across the street in the morning to buy your newspaper and travel not much further to the chemist/pharmacist ('apotheke') and a large department store.
The romantic and the intellectually curious will want to know: the ten-minute walk from the train station across the River Aare at night would be unbeatable for the start of a honeymoon. The lights of the old town and cathedral are reflected in the still water, as are the bare branches of some unusually graceful tall trees whose name I’ve yet to discover. Look up the history on the hotel’s website and you couldn’t feel more strongly connected to it than when you take in the quirky layout of both public and private rooms or are sitting in the main dining room with its glowing honey-coloured wooden walls and stained glass mural. There are flowering potted plants in gorgeous colours on every table. The atmosphere and cooking smells attract lots of local residents at every meal – and I am longing for snow, for a chance to experience the contrast between this interior and a white, icy drama outside.
I am checking the box for free high-speed internet because I have been given the information I need to use it, but haven't yet tried this out.
[ I did try that out near the end of my stay. No problems to report. ]
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