With its historical town centre, quaint bridges, river and lake views, Lucerne is a beautiful city. Already well-known for its architecture, over the last few years, Lucerne has been showing a new face, becoming a favourite destination for those who love design. From modern art museums to local design stores, there is a lot to see around town: discover everything on offer with our design lover’s guide to Lucerne.
Music meets design at KKL Luzern
Right in the heart of the city, overlooking the lake, you will find one of the most interesting buildings in Lucerne, the impressive KKL Luzern (Culture and Convention Centre Lucerne). Designed and realised by French superstar architect Jean Nouvel between 1995 and 2000, this steel and glass construction blends in seamlessly with the water that surrounds it, contrasting wonderfully with the Old Town nearby. Here, you can not only admire the futuristic architecture, but you can also enjoy the best concerts in the area, as well as haute cuisine at the restaurant. After visiting KKL Luzern, head over to nearby Buvette Luzern for a drink in the sun right on the lakeshore: this summer bar is open every day until midnight and is one of the city’s most popular hangouts during the warmer months.
Two artists, two geniuses, two very different masters of their craft: Pablo Picasso and Paul Klee shaped the history of art at the beginning of the 20th century, and today they can both be admired in the same museum in Lucerne, Sammlung Rosengart. On one floor you will find the understated, delicate works of Klee, and on another the bold and colourful paintings of Picasso, while on a third floor paintings by other Modernist artists such as Chagall. This is a stop not to be missed for art lovers visiting Lucerne.
Get inspired at the Hans Erni Museum
An artist, a local and an activist: Hans Erni led a very interesting (and long) life and a visit to the museum that has been dedicated to his accomplishments is a must. Erni was a well-rounded, prolific artist – a painter, graphic designer, illustrator and sculptor, he was also very politically active, and died at the age of 106 in 2015. Hans Erni fought for women’s suffrage and nuclear disarmament and painted murals for the Red Cross, the IOC, and the UN. Over 300 pieces of his work, spanning seven decades, can be seen at the Hans Erni Museum and give visitors a good overview of his incredible creativity.
Design for everyone
Looking for the perfect gift for a design-addicted friend? Then check out Franziska Bründler’s atelier, Fidea Design. Located on the river not far from Lucerne’s centre, a city that Franziska describes as ‘small and beautiful‘, this quirky store features sleek, minimalist decor, as well as a collection of unique objects, stationary, posters and much more. The all-female team that runs the atelier constantly updates the store’s offer, so even if you have already been, check it out again to see what’s new.
An absolute must-see for any fashionista, Atelier Treger is a wonderful source of inspiration for those who enjoy high-quality clothes with a 1920s vibe. Here you will find impeccable suits, bowties, and suspenders that look straight out of The Great Gatsby, all of which are handmade by very skilled tailors on site. A visit to this atelier is a real pleasure, especially if you are looking for something truly distinguished or unique to wear.
A bistro, a bar, a concert and music hall… and a pool cinema: Neubad is all this and much more. With its half-vintage, half-modern look, this space offers the chance to watch a movie in an emptied-out swimming pool, admire the work of local and international artists, and even play the piano in order to get yourself a free beer. You can eat, drink, play, sing, meet and greet – there is really no way to get bored around here, making it an interesting and unique place to spend a relaxing but lively evening, the brilliant end to a day exploring Lucerne.
Fumetto – International Comix-Festival
Each year in spring, Lucerne is the place to be for those who love comics, as the city becomes home to one of the best comic festivals in Europe, Fumetto – International Comix-Festival. Here, you’ll find drawings of masters past and present, and you can also participate in workshops and lectures, or even get a copy of your book autographed by your favourite artist. Each year, Fumetto also holds a themed competition to give comic creators the opportunity to compare their work, to present it to the public and to exchange views with other artists.
Technicolour cushions add character to the Hotel Anker bedrooms | Courtesy of Switzerland Tourism
The perfect blend of vintage and contemporary design, Hotel Restaurant Anker is centrally located, making it the ideal place to stay to discover Lucerne. No two rooms are the same, and each furnished with bright and colourful elements. The stunningly decorated bar and restaurant offers a lively place to go for a drink or grab a bite to eat.