swiss first class 777
TRIP REPORT – SWISS First Class : One night in Montreal
June 23, 2019
REVIEW – SWISS First Class Lounge – Zurich (ZRH E-Gates)
August 4, 2019

REVIEW – Radisson Blu Zurich Airport : Business Class Room

Radisson Blu

  • Location: Zurich Airport
  • Rate: 88CHF (Friends and Family rate)
  • Room Type: Business Class Room
  • Chain: Radisson
  • Loyalty Program: Club Carlson
  • Status during stay: Gold (courtesy of UK Amex Platinum)
  • Date of stay: March 2017


I had a few different options for airport hotels on this trip. Having previously stayed at the downright depressing Hilton I was keen to avoid a repeat visit, especially since it is a shuttle bus ride away from the airport. I discounted the regular Radisson on the basis of its shuttle transfer as well.

If anything, hotels in Opfikon are easier to get to given that a few of them are on the tram line, accessible directly from the terminal.

However, I ultimately opted for the Radisson Blu which is situated within the airport terminal itself. Radisson is a brand which seems to have something of a stranglehold on European airports, I seem to almost exclusively stay at their hotels when needing to catch an early morning flight, such as: Copenhagen, Stockholm, Oslo.

I really like the modern Scandinavian design of Radisson properties and tend to get very good treatment thanks to my Club Carlson Gold Status (given for free to Amex Platinum cardholders). It also doesn’t hurt that I have a friend working at Carlson Wagonlit who gives me access to the Friends and Family discount rate ?

Most of all though I wanted to be able to head straight to the famed SWISS First Class lounge as quickly as possible after waking up, in order to maximise my time there!

radisson ZRH

The entrance to the hotel is very clearly signposted and is located within the terminal building

I was really impressed when I first walked into the central atrium. What a contrast to the dreary old Hilton down the road. The reception area resembled a Kraftwerk concert with hosts stood at geometric podiums greeting guests…

radisson blu ZRH Lobby

Check-in at the Radisson Blu ZRH

However the focal point was undeniably the bar with its 16 metre tall wine tower, glowing like an incandescent monolith and complete with acrobatic servers dangling from high wires!


Check-in was handled very smoothly and efficiently. Staff are clearly aware that people here will often be in a hurry and they seemed very adept at checking people in with minimal fuss. I was thanked for my loyalty as a Club Carlson Gold member and given two drinks vouchers valid for any drink I wanted as well as being upgraded to a business class room.


The Room

radisson ZRH-11
radisson ZRH-10

Unlike the main atrium, the hallways of this hotel are rather drab and dark.

radisson blu zrh

The room itself though was very bright, spacious and modern feeling, I particularly liked the carpeted ‘floating’ luggage rack under the TV.

radisson ZRH-23
radisson ZRH-22
radisson ZRH-24

Despite being on the small side, the bathroom had a few cool touches like the concertina lamp, red accent wall and a frosted window looking onto the bedroom. I know that these bathroom windows can be quite divisive but when closed I personally don’t think there’s a significant compromise in terms of privacy, whereas the added brightness makes quite a difference to the overall feel of the space.

The bedroom itself is dominated by the impressively large and modern TV. I think it’s fair to say that if the tech is up to scratch a lot else can be forgiven in hotel room design. However there really wasn’t much to complain about here!

radisson ZRH-16
Welcome fruit bowl and chocolate waferWelcome fruit bowl and chocolate wafer
No universal power sockets, only Swiss and EU typeNo universal power sockets, only Swiss and EU type

The addition of a small sitting area and desk made this room feel a little more residential and comfortable than would otherwise have been the case.

radisson blu zrh pillow menu

Perhaps the most impressive feature of the room was the pillow menu and accompanying deep sleep pillow spray. The bed already came with four plump feather pillows and a very comfortable mattress but this really took things to another level. I mean how many other hotels have you been to that offer cherry stone pillows?


Hallway cupboardsHallway cupboards
radisson ZRH-15

Given the compact nature of the room there wasn’t exactly a huge amount of storage space but to be fair most people won’t spend more than a few hours here and there is plenty of space to open up two suitcases under the TV. I was very pleasantly surprised to see a commercial Nespresso machine as used in some Four Seasons hotels, rather than the standard domestic machines (with the plastic capsules) favoured by most hotels.


Food and Drink

cocktail angel bar zrh

Other than the in-room amenities my only experience of the hotel’s F&B was the complimentary Negroni that I was served at the Angels bar. The service was really good and not only was I able to order whatever I wanted as my complimentary drink, they even let me choose my gin!

Breakfast was included as a result of being in a Business Class room but in the morning I was keen to check out as quickly as possible and head straight to the SWISS First Class lounge instead…


Basics Checklist

  • Power sockets near the bed
  • Easy to understand light switches
  • Coffee Machine
  • Separate shower and bath [FAIL]
  • Blackout Blinds
  • Stable, fast and free Wifi
  • Feather pillows [Bonus points for pillow menu!]
  • Quiet and powerful aircon

Overall this was a fantastic stay. A hotel directly attached to the airport terminal could very easily have rested on its laurels but everything here was a genuine cut above. The design in both the room and the common areas was eye catching and modern. Elite recognition truly went above and beyond and I slept incredibly well thanks to the soft mattress, pillow menu and blackout blinds. If I really wanted to nitpick I’d say that a walk in shower would have been preferable to the step-in combo and the lack of universal power and USB ports was a little inconvenient. All in all though a great stay and a hotel that I’d recommend without hesitation.

SWISS First Class : One night in Montreal

Part 1:
Radisson Blu Zurich Airport : Business Class Room
Part 2:
SWISS First Class Lounge : Zurich E Gates
Part 3:
SWISS : First Class – A330 – Zurich to Montreal
Part 4:
W Montreal : Fantastic Suite
Part 5:
Air Canada Lounge : Montreal
Part 6:
SWISS : First Class – B777 – Montreal to Zurich

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