Category: Geneva

Have you heard about Luigia??? The new Italian restaurant in Geneva and also the new who is who spot of Geneva…

The owner has already a great success with Capocaccia in Confederation Centre, where every Thursday, we enjoy the Milanese happy hour (where you have access to a big buffet of delicious Italian appetizers while you sip your drink) with the sound of a great DJ.
Couple of weeks ago, they organized a 3 day tasting for friends. I thought it was a genius idea to go as clients check the food, the service and see if we could give any suggestions. To be honest beside few seasoning adjustment on the food we didn’t need to add anything.

The “official” opening of “Luigia would be early September, but in the mean time the restaurant is open every day, and let me tell you full at every service.

So few days ago when my sister act group (sorry that is an inside joke….) got together, I told them let’s go to Luigia, you need to see it. It was one of those nights where Geneva streets were empty. I thought to myself “I hope there would be few people at least at the restaurant”…. oh well they wanted a relaxed evening anyway …
But when we started walking through the alley and see the Luigia inscription written with lights, I understood why the streets were empty, everyone was at Luigia ;)
And when I say everyone, I am not exaggerating… I saw so many familiar faces that I had the feeling I was more networking than dining ;)

The restaurant has a great vibe, when you enter, you just smile. For me the great fun is the high tables in the middle of the restaurant where you can eat as well. And leave eating you can check out who is coming in and who is leaving, you have a better view of the room ;)

And I know that they are going to create a mini restaurant for kids, with lower tables and chairs: with an adult taking care of them. So when the parents go to dinner, the kids can have fun in their own restaurant and meet other kids!!! I believe the idea is genius.

We decided to share the “Chiacchiere Mozzarella”, the chiacchiere are puff pastry strips, that normally is prepared like a desert (sprinkled with confectioners’ sugar) during the Carnival. The restaurant Luigia serves it for desert with nutella, but as an appetizer as well.

Some of us took a pizza; the others pasta and one friend took the mussels… well let me tell you everything was delicious…
I highly recommend the “Pizza Luigia” and you will tell me about it…

So in few words: the crowd is great, the food is delicious… the service???? I think it adds a “je ne sais quoi” when all the stuff is Italian. They are smiling and they speak French, it sounds like Italian…
You know how I like Italy, Italian food, and Italian men…. So for me it is a big big plus ;) )))

I am so happy that there is something new and worth it in Geneva… Move away Da Paolo, there is a new pizzeria in town and it is called Luigia!!!!

Again due to my intense traveling I missed the monthly happy hour at Hotel Intercontinental in Geneva. It occurred every last Wednesday of the month in summer. And of course as Geneva doesn’t know glorious summers, they had only three…
Happy that I managed to attempt to at least the 3rd and last one…

We used to go a lot at the Hotel Intercontinental when we were young, as it was basically the only Hotel with a pool. Last year when I first returned I was happily astonished to see the changes that they made at the hotel and especially at the pool. It was not anymore a regular Intercontinental which directly holds connotations of a luxury airport hotel, but a great modern one.

When last night my friends told me they have booked a table, I was thrilled to see what they did with the place. When you arrive, you have to be on a list again… damn is Geneva becoming New York with events and lists ????

They were tables all around the pool and it was interesting to see who would sit on which side…. The system is easy, either you reserve a table and you sit where we sat which had nice lights; or at the end of the pool… which I could call the dark side… as they were seriously missing some lights. I guess some people like to be in the dark. I was happy to be at the light and especially by the entrance so i could check all the new arrivals ;)
The other option is just put yourself on the list, then when you enter either you hit one of the two bars or ask for a table and the bottle that comes with it. And i saw some high tables on the left of the pool, where i guess it works on a first come first served basis.

The night was beautiful, the service was great… But what I really appreciate was the effort that everybody made on clothes. In Geneva when go to an after work, you either go with your work clothes, or you just wear something casual.
Last night everybody was dressed… especially a group of ladies with their little cocktail dresses. Ok, some of them should wear a different outfit, but I give them a big A+ for the effort.

The only thing that my friends thought was a good idea, and I didn’t agree was the corner where they offered relooking… Hair and makeup…
Personally I think it didn’t make any sense; all the ladies were already dolled up and even some were dressed to impress…. So why to propose them another look?
It would have been a better fit if it were during a ladies lunch or an afternoon high tea.

The food and beverage…. well as I am trying to shred the spaghettis, focaccias, kebaps and pides of the summer, I didn’t have my usual poison…I had a different kind of bubbles… Badoit ;)
But I couldn’t resist so taste the mezzes and they were very quite good…

So overall it was a great event, beautiful setting, great DJ from Ibiza, nice crowd, great service, amazing weather with the full moon and as usual great company…
Otherwise how you would explain why I have stayed 5 hours, where I was supposed to say max 2 …

Everybody in Geneva knows it by now that if you want to have a great view of Geneva, chill and drink some bubbles you go to the rooftop of Hotel Metropole.

My friend who is renting and managing it until September 4th, made a trial last year for few nights, and when she saw it was a total success decided to take it for few months this summer. And this summer “Cafe Delux” was one of the hits of Geneva. As I was running around all summer, finally I made it yesterday.

Thanks god one of my friends made a table reservation. When I arrived at the elevators, I remembered my days in New York at the rooftop hotels such as Gansewort or Soho house; where you queue in front of the elevators where you have to be on a list.
It is a very critical moment, are you going to be able to have access to 7th Heaven, or you are one of the “peuple” (common people) and you need to stay on the ground????
So believe me last night when I saw the bouncer refusing people without pitty, I was very happy to be on that magic list.

When you arrive finally at the rooftop, you have 360 degrees of Geneva’s view. There are tables on each side, the ones on the right are comfy lounge chairs, and the others are high tables with chairs. The DJ booth is in the middle, and at the end of the terrace you have the bar. So you chose the view that you want: people’s legs and butts or Geneva’s jet d’eau…
We were at a high table, so I just checked Geneva…

The service was good, the girls were always making sure that we were fine and had everything we needed. My only problem was that after few glasses of bubbles I needed to eat and unfortunately the kitchen was closed… I guess the mini burgers that I saw making their way during the evening, would be for the next time…

The crowd… a bit of everything; group of friends, boys and girls hunting, or just people chilling out while sipping their drinks… Don’t go there with a date though, cause it is a great place to meet people. There are cute boyzz and girlzzz, and as the place is not very big, walking around makes you interfere directly with the people… And if you are single, I highly recommend not getting a table, just mingle near the bar (the real meat market).
And if you are single but like your comfort and have a table…. (basically like me) Then I advise you to make several visits to the bathroom, which obliges you to mingle ;) )))
Yesterday I heard that a friend of mine actually met his wife at the rooftop of Metropole…. Thank you Café Delux!!!

I remember in New York, during happy hour on Thursdays, the bar of Four Season Hotel was the meat market… although didn’t last long as the “professionals” made their way very quickly…
So I guess Café Delux is the Geneva “meet meat spot”, and the good news is that I haven’t seen any professionals, and believe me it is a challenge in Geneva. I guess after all there are benefits to have someone at the door…

In French we say, “il vaut mieux tard que jamais” litterally meaning better late than never… It took me some time to go to the rooftop, but so happy that I finally made it.
And if you haven’t been, I advise you to do so, but I highly recommend to reserve a table, because it would be a such a pity to arrive to that famous elevator door and be banned from 7th Heaven ;) ))

My friend wanted to invite me for lunch for my birthday, and as it was a kind of rainy day, we decided to not risk and instead of doing a terrace, eat somewhere inside.
“La table du 9” is a restaurant that I normally go in winter, as they have great starchy fresh food. And it always hits the right spot in cold winter days.

When we arrived a great smell was coming out of the kitchen, which didn’t help calming our hunger. Unfortunately 20 minutes later, no one had come to take our order, neither brought us bread.
I started to lose my patience… don’t mess with me when I am hungry. Every time she would say I am coming and would run to another table. With all the fairness she was the only one zig zaging and serving the room. The only help she had was someone just taking out the dishes.

When she finally came to our table, I told her that if she had came 5 minutes later; we wouldn’t be there as it had been already 20 minutes that we were waiting. She asked me to not “exaggerate” and continued by saying “anyway, what you want”. She was lucky it was already late and we were really hungry (and my friend had invited me), otherwise we would have left the place right that minute.
So I just replied to her that it wasn’t a way to talk to clients and thought that she can dream about any tip.

We shared an appetizer, and only then the bread decided to join our meal. She had taken a wrong order for the entree, so I ended up being the only one with a dish. My friend had to wait 10 more minutes before having hers…. Oh and no apologies!!!

The food is still good and fresh, although a bit too much olive oil in everything. I agree it gives a good taste, but don’t make swim my food in it.

So in summary, ok food, bad service, and “I don’t care attitude” which is the worst for me. Maybe they should make the staff live on tips like in the US. I am not saying the service would be better but at least they would work better to earn their tip, and even do it with a smile to have a bigger tip…

Hello everyone, I know I know it has been a while that I didn’t give you news. And believe me there are lots of news to give. First of all thank you to all my friends for their wonderful messages for my birthday!!! You know it is really good to be me ;)

Now let me tell you what I have done the last few weeks. I enjoyed the sunny weather and went out a lot in Geneva. I did a crazy week-end in Milan, and I had an amazing week in Sardinia.
I will talk about my trips later; but for now let me talk to you about my birthday, and what I did …
Last year I did a big thing in Istanbul, so this year wanted to go mellower and I wasn’t really in the mood of organizing a big party. This year my sister, who kept asking me what I wanted to do, decided to stop waiting on me and called some friends and organize a small dinner at the Hotel President Wilson.

Hotel President Wilson is situated by the lake on the rive droite, and has a great lounge/terrace around the pool, and a restaurant called “Bayview”. This summer they do every Thursday night happy hour and they bring little canapés from their Lebanese restaurant, “Arabesque”. I never managed to go to any and I really wanted to try it, so I could talk about it.

The place is really beautiful; you have a great view of the lake. The only inconvenient; and this is more for the hotel guests, the “pool” view is actually “room” view. The pool is built in the middle of the building, so one side of it has the rooms with no tinted windows. This basically means when you ask a room with lake view, you have the pool and the restaurant view as well. And you have the opportunity to offer a peep show to the diners ;) Joke aside I think it is a pity to have a beautiful view, but never enjoy it because you keep your curtains closed as you are scared people might see you in your room’s intimacy…

At my table I was sitting pool/room view side as I know how the Leman Lake looks like and I am more curious what happens in the rooms…
You can chose between two menus and a la carte dishes; as we like to be complicated, my mother asked the Maitre d’ to talk to the Lebanese restaurant and that we wanted some food from them as well. Yes yes I know, the apple never falls to far from the tree, why do you think I became whom I am :)
What I like about the restaurant is that instead of giving us the typical answer “oh we cannot do that, house rules”, they right away called someone from the other restaurant so we can be happy. Believe me, it might seem so what to some of you, but in Geneva, it is a big plus.

We ended up sharing few appetizers from the Bayview restaurant, and few dishes from the Arabesque restaurant. The food was quite decent, we had bubbles to celebrate. I think the only thing that I can criticize would be the service. They are all lovely but they should come and check on us more often. We ended up doing our own Champagne service, as we would have died of thirst waiting for them to pay us attention. I am happy that they were not like my water filler waiter (the one from La Finestra) but come on, find the middle. Especially when you consider that the income of a restaurant is based more on the drinks than on food….

Oh well, I had a good evening, great company and the most important great gifts ;) and if you are still curious, no peep show from a hot guest, just someone who was very into dental hygiene (he brushed his teeth for at least 6 minutes)…

Thank you sis to organize, thanks mom to invite and thanks guys to be there!!!!

“Roberto” is one of the known restaurants in Geneva center. It is situated near Rive, and attracts a lot of business men when they want to impress their client. My mother always would say, you know the quality of a restaurant by looking at their flower arrangements, and if you follow her logic, Roberto must be among the best.

I hate to criticize everything (I know it doesn’t look like) but I don’t agree; I would put it as one of the most expensive not the best. I gave so many chances, and 99% of the time I left broke and disappointed. So when my friend invited me to join them, I was more excited about the fact to have some material to write than the food…

I cannot deny, the atmosphere is beautiful and the place is packed, and the service with a smile. I ordered an artichoke heart, followed by scaloppini al limone (veal escallops in lemon sauce). So after 20 – 25 minutes I received two big hearts of artichokes and two green leaves with one little carrot in the middle… no dressing or vinaigrette. I completely understand that they let you dress it your way, but propose me vinaigrette on the side and let me chose.
Anyway the problems started with the entrees… They came exactly 1hour and 15 minutes after we sat. I had what I ordered, but my friend who ordered a grilled sole had a meuniere (cooked in a pan with butter); we had 4 orders of soles and only received 3. And instead of dividing them among four, they filled up three plates with the fish and the poor fourth person had a quarter of a sole.

And for the sides, no one got what they expected. Someone had ordered his dish with french fries, but as his plate was full of fish, only six sad fries made it. come on, when you pay around 70 USD for a plate of fish, you expect first to receive it, then to have the right side order and you also expect some visual… Don’t we say that we first eat with the eyes… well at Roberto they don’t know the concept, not only you are not satisfied with your food, your plate look sad as well…

There is a saying: “don’t judge a book by its cover”… well don’t judge Roberto by its flowers and decors and prices, it just doesn’t deliver what you expect from it. Nobody leaves the restaurant satisfied… but due to the lack of choices for a business lunch, they keep going.
It is sad because Roberto has all the elements to have satisfied customers, they just need to put it together and stop taking them for idiots!!!

In Geneva, when you say “Auberge de Dully” everybody starts salivating thinking about the chicken, and the rostis and the yummy warm shortcrust cream pie….
Dully opened its wine house in 1840 and housed a lounge with only five tables and fifteen stools. It is only in 1964 that the chicken and lamb legs started to be served. So over 40 years, this Auberge owned by the Charriere family, situated between Geneva and Lausanne serves their customers. Growing up in Geneva, I used to go there a lot; first with my parents, then with my friends, and now with my friends and their kids…
It is not the first choice spot for the evenings, because it is 20 – 30 minutes from Geneva, and you need to take the highway. In a city small like Geneva when you stay in your car more than 10 minutes to arrive to a restaurant, it is considered far, and with all the police controls, you have to be careful with your alcohol intake…
This week-end we decided with a friend to go there and enjoy the chicken, and I honestly was craving more about the pie ;) As usual the place was packed, and as usual the place was too hot. I had the feeling to sit near the sun… The décor is very rustic and full of pictures of formula one and especially Ferrari as they are big fans. Normally we could park just in the front, and it was always a big chaos as everyone would leave there car at any empty spot. Now they have closed it, so you have to be creative and park along the road or use the open air parking a bit further away.
The chicken was juicy and the rosti crispy. I don’t even talk about the pie, because I finished it almost by myself… The service was as usual quick and efficient. The crowd was composed of few people that I knew, few families, few couples, and few groups. There was one woman whom I was happy not to sit in front, she had so many surgeries that she reminded me of a mild version of Jocelyn Wildenstein (you know the socialite in NY who did so many plastic surgeries that she looks like a cat… although that would insult the poor cats). Thanks god the person that I was sitting looked good, therefore my appetite was intact, lol
So a great night after all, great food, good vibe, funny people to watch, great company and the good point was that while I was eating, due to the heat I was in a mini sauna; so instantly losing weight ;) the negative point, when I left, I smelled like a roasted chicken myself… could be dangerous when you walk by a dog….

What to do on a rainy day… sorry rainy week in Geneva??? Big dilemma as it happens very often in our lovely town. Why do you think everything, including some people are so green? We have so much rain that even humans started to grow leaves ….
So I have spent my days home, working and let’s be honest planning my next trips. I finally decided to leave my castle for a meeting, followed up with a lunch. My friend proposed me “La Finestra”, near Confederation Center. Never heard of it so was quite excited to finally discover a new spot. It is a small Italian restaurant with maximum 10 tables. I would more go there in winter than in summer, but then again these days it is quite chilly in Geneva. I would also advise that spot for romantic lunch or dinners. I am sure at night you have lots of couples. The menu is great but I decided to go ahead with the daily special. Let’s say if I am very hungry I would need two daily specials as the portions were tiny.
The service was good, we received the appetizers very quickly and the entrée came soon after. But I had one big complaint. I know I know I always do. The waiter had one main mission…. To never let my water glass empty … Every 55 seconds, he would come and top it up… and this even if I didn’t drink it… I seriously hate that. First of all you cannot have a conversation as you keep being interrupted and also, it creates a panic in you. You feel obliged to keep drinking, so there is enough space on your glass…
This reminds me the fish restaurants in Turkey; beside the water battle, I seriously believe they work on commission about the plates they change. The waiters have this compulsion to take away your plate even if you had a little bread crumb on it. And I spend my lunch or dinners fighting to keep it….
Finally we told him that we could take care of the glass filling, and ordered our coffees, and enjoyed the caramelized almonds brought to our table. Between us, the coffee was so bitter that we really needed something extra sweet.
So after all, if you want to have a calm or romantic lunch/dinner, good Italian food, you should give a shot, but tell your waiter to leave your glass alone ;)

On my quest to find the best terrace for lunch in Geneva, I decided to give a shot to “Riverside Café” in Geneva. It used to be “Le Bleu Rhone” when I was living in Geneva couple of years ago and the food was correct. The beauty of this coffee is that you are directly sitting by the lake, and quite far from the traffic. The new decoration is beautiful, the chairs more comfy. My sister told me that she heard about their famous burgers, although I decided to stick to my filet de perches (perch filets).
The young girl serving us was all smiles and sweet; we placed our order in 5 minutes and had our appetizers in 10… while lunching we saw two another friends, who joined us. One of them took the burger and the other one the filet de perches like me. The waitress told me that unfortunately we won’t all receive our dishes at the same time, which was normal.
After 45 minutes I started to lose my patience and asked her if the cook went fishing my perches? She said that I was so right that she has already asked him 4 times. Finally after 55 minutes I receive a plate where the fish looked still alive, the fries soaked in oil. Tried to taste it, not only it wasn’t cooked but had no taste. My sister, who had ordered a cheeseburger, had a piece of cheese thrown on her ground beef.
I guess you all know what happened after. Called her and told her to take away this, cause I couldn’t accept a raw tasteless fish after waiting that long. My friend also said to cancel her order. And we both took burgers instead. Finally we got all the food, some salads missing, some salads we wished were missing cause they looked really tired. My burger off course with onions (that I told at the beginning of the lunch that I cannot eat) and tasteless. Thanks god the spot is nice and I was with friends because I would have returned everything and leave that place right away.
I think it is unacceptable that because a restaurant has a terrace, they have to hire incompetent cooks, incapable of cooking fish in 55 minutes. And the worst, the restaurant was almost empty, what would have happened if it was full? We would have never seen any food???
So Riverside Café has definitely capsized, and don’t think there is any hope to save it from sinking.

Yesterday, there was the bikini, beach towel and jewelry sale of friends, and a percentage of the profit would be going to an association called “Act In Kind”. So I went to see them and check out the beautiful stuff.
After the sale, my friends and I went to have a drink at “Le Soleil Rouge”, do you remember the wine and tapas place? Well if in winter it is a good spot, in summer not that much. As the weather was warm, everybody was outside, but different crowd this time. It seemed people who saw the crowd on the side walk… stopped. The wine was still good though, and the tapas … as long as you stick to the basics, fine. I would not advise any fish related tapas there (personal experience talking).
So after a while we wanted to go to a place where we could sit and nibble, as these tapas weren’t exactly what we were looking for. So we decided to go to “the Cottage” café. It is a restaurant on rive droite, just across the Richmond Hotel (actually it used to be their restaurant). The menu is composed of Mediterranean tapas, and they have a great terrace. The only thing I reproach them is the service. The owner keeps hiring these students, they are lovely but every time I go, either they forget to bring something or disappear on me. The restaurant lost a lot of lunch clienteles, simply because people had enough of waiting, and had limited time.
So last night before going there, I told to my friends, the food is great but don’t expect much about the service. And I wasn’t wrong, beside the fact that they missed one order, our pulpo didn’t seem very fresh. I didn’t even try it but the smell of it was unbearable. And they literally forgot us, no one came to see us for at least half an hour, at a point that we were about to leave without paying… even then not sure they would have noticed. The service crew is lovely but has no idea about service, or even the product they are selling. They brought this “artisanal” drink that was supposed to be with berries… The color was beautiful, but the taste was all chemical, and when you read the label, beside chemical formulas you couldn’t read anything else. So you start to ask questions about their “artisanal” teas and ice creams as well.
Thanks god most of the food is yummy, and makes you forget a little about the quality of service :)