One of the oldest city hotels in Europe – founded in 1681 as an inn for gentlemen, rebuilt in 1844 as a Grand Hotel – receives guests from all over the world. Such a tradition demands commitment – which we live out fully every day. Learn more about the history and people who are part of this tradition: Experience the living past.
Man has always been a traveller. Hospitality characterises our culture. So it is no wonder that it is in inns and hotels in particular that history lives on. The guestbook of the Grand Hotel Les Trois Rois reads like a who's who of world history. Empress Michiko of Japan, James Joyce and Pablo Picasso: were all guests for a while at our hotel.
First record of the gentlemen's inn "the Three Kings".
Innkeeper Johann Christoph Im Hof has three figures carved out of wood to represent the three kings and mounts them on the façade of the building.
General Napoleon Bonaparte stopped off at the "Three Kings" while travelling through. He is honoured with a glittering state reception.
Under French rule, kings were out of favour and the hotel was temporarily known as “Zu den drei Bildern" (“At the sign of the three images”) or the "Hotel aux trois magots".
Master tailor Johann Jakob Senn acquired the "Three Kings" hostelry.
Senn had the buildings torn down and commissioned Basel Architect Amadeus Merian to build the new hotel.
On 16 February the new hotel Des Trois Rois opened its doors. A plain classical style distinguishes this well proportioned building.
The Austrian author Theodor Herzl stayed at the "Three Kings" hotel from 26 to 29 August. During the First International Zionist congress in Basel, he laid the foundation for the creation of the state of Israel.
The southern section of the hotel (Blumenrain 2) was sold to the Kantonalbank and renovated accordingly.
The Kantonalbank moved out and the tourist office took over the front building at the Schifflände.
1941/42 - 1972 - Director Alfred Kienberger moulded the "Drei Könige am Rhein / Hôtel des Trois Rois". He restored it to its international reputation and recognition after the war.
Entrepreneur Dr. h.c. Thomas Straumann acquired the "Three Kings" and the southern section at Blumenrain 2. He spared no expense in restoring the hotel, under the direction of Basel architect Christian Lang, and according to national heritage criteria with sections reconstructed in accordance with the original plans. The extension to include the front building at Blumenrain 2 added a number of rooms, a large ballroom, banqueting and modern conference rooms.
Reopening of the Grand Hotel Les Trois Rois on 20 March.
Our employees, from 38 different countries are always here for you – attentively offering a first-class service with devotion and great attention to detail.
Philippe Clarinval, born in Zug (CH) in 1975, has extensive management experience in the international hotel industry. This central Switzerland native began his career in a selection of luxury hotels spread across the US and Asia. He then took over two lively resorts in Switzerland. For seven years, he managed The Omnia Mountain Lodge, in Zermatt, which grew under his leadership to become one of the most distinguished 5-star superior boutique hotels in Switzerland. In 2017, he became the general manager at the Carlton Hotel St. Moritz, which was awarded distinctions, including a prestigious 5-star rating from Forbes. Mr Clarinval is continuing his academic education alongside his career. He obtained an MBA in 2014, and has completed courses at the universities of Cornell (USA), Oxford (UK) and Harvard (USA). He is currently doing a PhD at the University of Liverpool (UK).
Thomas Straumann’s (*1963) skills in precision engineering were complemented by his studies at the Basel Management School, from which he graduated in 1988. In 1990, he was responsible for restructuring Institut Straumann AG and was CEO and Chairman of the Board of Directors until 1994. He was Chairman of the Board of Straumann Holding AG until 2002. Thomas Straumann has been a member of the Board of Directors of Straumann since 1990 and is elected until 2011. In 2004, the University of Basel awarded him an honorary doctorate. In 1997 he founded Medartis AG and is Member of the Board. Other key directorships include centerVision AG (Chairman), Straumann Holding AG (Member of the Board) & CHI CLASSICS BASEL Ltd (President of the Board).
After qualifying initially as a pharmaceutical assistant, Ursula Straumann (*1967) went on to complete a commercial traineeship and then, after a period of on-the-job training, obtained a Swiss federal diploma as a management assistant. A flexible all-rounder, she has filled a number of positions in the financial services and medical technology industries. As an assistant to executive management and to the company chairman, she obtained insights into the entire chain of business processes. She has been particularly active in the marketing and communication fields. Ursula Straumann is a member of the Board of Directors of centerVision AG.
After obtaining a commercial diploma, Rudolph Schiesser (*1959) studied at the Ecole Hôtelière de Lausanne and at Cornell University (Ithaca, New York). During the course of his career he spent three years as general manager of the Hotel Imperial Palace (Annecy, France) and was general manager of the Hotel Les Trois Rois (Basel) from 1994 to 2007. Mr. Schiesser is chairman of the board of directors of the Villa Orselina, the Grand Casino Basel and of the Airport Hotel Basel. He is also lessee of the Hotel Touring au Lac (Neuchâtel) and the Hotel Athmos in La Chaux-de-Fonds.
Hans Wiedemann (*1953) was born in Basel and studied at the Hotel School Lausanne, where he is now on the International Advisory Board. After a variety of positions in Switzerland, he spent 13 years working in Australia, lastly as the general manager of five hotels with 2000 employees. In China he established a hotel with 600 rooms and 1300 employees before returning to Switzerland, not least because of his two children Raphael and Rebecca. For 9 years he managed the Palace in Montreux, at that time owned by Swissair and Nestlé. Since 2004, Hans Wiedemann has held the position of General Manager at Badrutt's Palace Hotel, St Moritz and since 2012 he is Managing Director & Delegate of the Board.
Awards: Australian Service Excellence Award | Hotelier of the Year 2001 | Hotelier of the World 2009 | EHMA Lifetime Achievement Award 2017
Dr. Jürg Greuter (*1956) graduated from the University of Basel Law School, where he also obtained his PhD. He is an attorney-at-law admitted to the bar in Switzerland and a Notary Public in Basel. He began his career as an associate with a law firm in Zurich. During his professional activity, he has served as a Board Member and Legal Counsel to numerous small and mid-sized companies in Switzerland and in France in different sectors such as MedTech, Construction, Tourism, Shipping, and Aviation. Dr. Greuter has been a founding Partner as from 1990 and is of Counsel since 2017 with the law firm Dietrich Greuter Wunder – Attorneys, Notaries and Mediators, (now: Dietrich Wunder Klingler Horni), in Basel. Currently, he is a Board Member of – amongst others – Medartis Group (Basel) and CSI Basel.