hotel in Zurich

Oct 20th, 2006, 07:53 AM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 783
hotel in Zurich

We will be flying into Zurich on Swiss International from Honolulu via LAX next July. This is a trip which entails several phases and several generations of family members.

My immediate family of 4, with 2 teenagers,want to see the Dolomite area before embarking on a cruise leaving from Venice.

After much thought regarding options, we think driving from Zurich down to northern Italy gives us the most flexibilty . The cost of car rental seems to be equal if not less, to rail tickets (according to RailSaver).

I am giving these details because I have posted here in recent months with numerous questions which many here on this board have helped me with and I am grateful.

My question- can you recommend a hotel near a car rental office from which it would be most convenient to leave Zurich ? We fly in on Sunday afternoon, plan to spend Sunday and perhaps Monday in Zurich, before picking up a rental car to begin our drive down to Bolzano or Ortesei. It appears Hertz, Avis and Budget as well as Europcar have offices but I cannot tell which would be the most convenient one to rent from. Ideally, we would shuttle into Zurich proper from the airport, and walk while in the city, and may be even walk to pick up our car ? Is this possible ? Hertz has an office on Morgartenstrasse. Is this near a nice part of Zurich where we might look for a hotel ?

Should we just shuttle back to the airport to pick up our car ? Is the airport on our way out of town ?

Thank you for your help.










okoshi2002 is offline  
Oct 21st, 2006, 02:02 AM
  #2  
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 9,311
Which route have you chosen to drive to the Dolomites? Will you be travelling through Klosters, Munstertal, Meran and then Bozen? If so, you'll be travelling through a very beautiful area of Switzerland called Graubünden and Engadin. Have your camera handy and don't drive too fast or you won't enjoy the sights.
See this thread for more details:
http://www.fodors.com/forums/threadselect.jsp?fid=2

If your driving through the above area, you might want to consider going over the Stilfserjoch. An incredible pass with 48 hairpins.
See: http://www.stilfserjoch.it/information.shtml

My friends usually rent a car at the airport because it's easiest to pick-up and bring back. Make sure you can take your rental car into Italy. Many rental agencies don't allow this.

Getting from Zürich to the airport is VERY easy. There's a train station in the airport that goes directly to Zürich Hauptbahnhof. Their are trains leaving every ten minutes.

The most difficult part about driving from the airport is getting through Zürich. You need to drive THROUGH the city to get to the Autobahn. Make sure you get good instructions and don't drive too fast because there are speed cameras all over.

I'll be glad to give you more driving instructions when I know which direction you're driving.

Can't help with the hotel.
kleeblatt is offline  
Oct 21st, 2006, 10:23 AM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 1,273
I suggest you get a hotel near the central train station and explore the area between it and the lake and, on the other side of the river, also of the historic old city core ("Altstadt") - look up www.mappy.com and search for a map of, say, Predigerplatz, that's in the old town..

Then when it comes time to move to Italy, hop on a train to the airport as Schuler suggests, get your vehicle, and head on out.

You are now on the "good" side of the city, you don't come back through the city - stay on the eastern side, take E41 to towards Winterthur (east) to the A1/E60 expressway heading east to Innsbruck where you turn off the E60 onto the E45 south and down to Bozen/Bolzano and beyond.

Tell the rental company in Zürich-airport that you need both road tax stickers (called "vignette") on your vehicle, the Swiss and also the Austrian - they may be able to reserve you such a vehicle. Saves you stopping at the Austrian border to buy the sticker - if you don't have one and drive on major expressways, you incur a fine that costs a bunch more than the sticker. (The Swiss sticker should already be on any rental car - it is only available for a full year. The Austrian can be bought for much shorter periods and is cheaper, but still...).

Use mappy or www.viamichelin.com to find Morgartenstrasse. Morgartenstrasse is not all that far from the train station, but why rent a car in the city center and fight your way out of the city with the realistic chance of getting lost a few times when the airport already lies in the right direction and train access is as easy as Schuler says?
WallyKringen is offline  
Oct 22nd, 2006, 10:11 PM
  #4  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 783
Thank you both for your helpful suggestions.
We do not yet know which route we will take to Ortisei. Will post further when we do.
okoshi2002 is offline  
Oct 23rd, 2006, 01:14 AM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 17,549
Just curious, Okoshi2002, as to how much you are paying in terms of a "drop-off charge" for that auto rental????
Dukey is offline  
Oct 24th, 2006, 10:12 AM
  #6  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 783
We plan to keep the car (garage in Venice Mestre) and return to Zurich via Grindelwald after the cruise )therefore no drop off charge.
okoshi2002 is offline  
Oct 25th, 2006, 06:24 PM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 7,689
You may find it a pain and somewhat confusing to drive out of the Hertz office in Morgartenstrasse, there are several pedestrian-only streets, one-way streets and streets with trams running on them. You have to then find the streets out to the highway. I am not sure I would tell a novice driver in Zurich to attempt it. (I used to live there and rented from there when I first moved there and had not bought a car, that's why I would not recco it myself.) The area is OK, but is not worth staying in as it is not really charming or interesting, and you can easily get there, if you really want to rent from there, by taking the tram system.

As noted above, it is very easy to get out to the airport so that is probably the best place to collect the car, as you will be able to get right onto the highway system. Some hotels offer a shuttle bus to the airport which might also be a good option for getting back and forth with luggage if you don’t want to take the train.

Can you give me a budget for your hotel, I can recommend several but a budget is more helpful. Zurich is not cheap, if you have any Marriott, Sheraton or Hyatt points, this is a good town to use them in. Generally, the average for a 3 star is about US$160, for a good 4 star you need to spend more than $200 and the rooms will most likely not be large enough for 4, so you will need 2 rooms. So based on that, let me know your budget. On a Sunday night, you may find slightly cheaper rooms than weeknights as Zurich is a business city.

I agree that if you have and are paying for the car (and to garage it in Venice!) you should take advantage of the drives over mountain passes. If you use a mapping software, it has been my experience that it will often only show you the fastest way, which are the highways, which will skip the passes. Sometimes you can adjust the software to say “don’t show highway routes”. But IMO you should get some good detailed maps of Switzerland and Italy and look for routes yourself, then you can post back on routes here for confirmation. You might Google things like “good drives in Europe” or something. The only drawback to the mountain passes in summer are the motorcyclists, but hey, you may see George Clooney....

Most rental cars already come with the Swiss highway vignette, especially by July. They cost about US$35 if you ahve to buy one.

Cicerone is offline  
Oct 26th, 2006, 08:17 AM
  #8  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 783
Thank you Cicerone.

Which map can you recommend of northern Italy and Switzerland (especially between Italy and Switzerland ) that I can acquire in the states ?
okoshi2002 is offline  
Oct 26th, 2006, 08:42 AM
  #9  
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 6,507
Hi okoshi---

I like the Michelin maps, which you should be able to buy in the US (surely online). You'll probably need two, one for Switzerland and one for northern Italy (# 429).

For a hotel in Zürich, what would be your budget? We stayed in a family room (4 beds) at Hotel Bristol, and it was fine:
http://www.hotelbristol.ch/

We had the room they show in the photo under "family rooms"; it's on the top floor and is quite large. I believe we paid 260 Swiss francs. The hotel is close to the train station and a few blocks from the Altstadt area, but quieter than the hotels there.

Someone mentioned using points but I found my Sheraton points were only good for a double room, so we would have needed two for our family. The Bristol was a much better option for us.
enzian is offline  
Oct 26th, 2006, 01:49 PM
  #10  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 783
Thank you Enzian.

Bristol Hotel sure does seem to be perfect in most regards- location, cost, quad room, shuttle to hotel !
okoshi2002 is offline  

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy -

FODOR'S VIDEO

All times are GMT -8. The time now is 07:38 AM.