The first luxury hotel in Zermatt operated by an international brand.

Designed to create a sense of peace and retreat while maximising views of the nearby Matterhorn, the Ritz-Carlton Zermatt comprises a 67-room luxury hotel with 24 hotel residences and a ski-in/ski-out chalet. Inspired by the nomadic origins and rustic lifestyle of the region’s Walser community, and with building façades finished in locally-sourced natural wood and stone, it aims to connect people with nature and celebrate the unique mountain location. We provide the complete scope of project and construction management services, and are the first point of contact for the client and key stakeholders.

  • Development Studies
  • Project Management
  • Construction Management
  • Client Matterhorn Peak
  • Duration 2018 - 2027
  • Budget Confidential

Project Phases

Development study

In conjunction with Strategic Hotel Consulting, who provided comprehensive market and financial feasibility studies and recommendations, we developed detailed project cost estimations and cash flow forecasts, including construction, FF&E, OS&E, marketing and sales. We also prepared a preliminary schedule, architect and interior design brief, as well as a general project brochure summarising the key elements. Once the market, financial feasibility studies and concept recommendations were completed and a project brochure finalised, Strategic Hotel Consulting tendered the project to various high-calibre operators such as Four Seasons, Cheval Blanc and Rosewood. Finally, after a detailed and intense tender process, the project was awarded to Marriott International for the Ritz-Carlton brand.

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We conduct feasibility studies, both from a commercial standpoint and from architectural and local codes perspectives. We fine tune the developers brief with further details such as area schedules and room descriptions. We include detailed requirements relating to the required scope of works of future project team members, and prepare tender documents for the team procurement.

Tender and procurement

Based on the results from the previous phase, we developed a highly detailed project brief. We conducted site surveys, set up a project platform, developed a project organisation chart and schedule, and started the tender process for team procurement. This began with lead architects and architect of record, and was followed by engineers, designers and consultants. At the same time, Strategic Hotel Consulting, Silveroc and the project lawyers started the negotiations with Marriott International for the dozens of other contracts required. The main contracts were successfully signed on 21st January 2021. You can read the press release here.

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We conduct the tender for the entire project team, including architect, interior designer, landscape architect, lighting consultants, MEP engineers, structural and civil engineer, fire engineer, marketing agency, public relations manager, and all other team members that are needed. Once we’ve sent out the tender documents we hold meetings with the candidates to ensure they fully understand the project and scope of services. When we receive the tender returns we conduct detailed analysis and comparisons. We then shortlist 2–3 candidates for each category, and hold final negotiations. Finally, we put forward our recommendation to the client, prepare the contracts together with the project lawyers, and finalise the appointment of the team.

Concept design

AW2 developed a preliminary design language with mood boards, sketches and plans. Work then proceeded to first concept design, which was developed in detailed consultation with the architect of record, engineers and consultants. In close collaboration with the Marriott technical services team and Silveroc, first project specifications and a detailed first cost estimation were also produced, to ensure compliance with operator standards, owner budget and schedule. The concept included the complete redesign of the hotel area, the challenge being to take what was originally a 20-hotel suite project and convert it to a 67-room hotel, including various food and beverage outlets and a spa, all within the constraints of an existing building permit. With the permit only requiring modification, 24 hotel residences divided into 6 chalets and a ski-in/ski-out chalet with food and beverage outlets were designed.

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The architect, interior designer and engineers develop the concept design documents. These include sketches, plans, computer-generated images, schematic drawings, specifications and budgets. We ensure that the design, specifications and budget are in line with the project brief, and help the client evaluate the design concepts and draft comments. We keep the project schedule up to date, provide regular reports, and review and approve professional fee invoices prior to payment by the client, to make sure they are in line with both contract terms and services and project progress.

Design development

With the design development being finalised and engineering in full throttle, the planning application is being prepared along with pre-consultations with authorities, political interests and other stakeholders. In parallel, a mock-up room is being designed in order to maximise value engineering. Planning application for the hotel has been submitted. Further planning applications for the ski-in/ski-out chalet as well as the hotel residences are being finalised, with submission scheduled for Q2 2023.

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The architect, interior designer, engineers and consultants refine the concept design into a detailed developed design. This can often involve mock-up rooms. We ensure the design, specifications and budget conform to the project brief, help the client evaluate the design development and draft comments, keep the project schedule up to date, provide update reports, and review and approve professional fee invoices prior to payment by the client.

Planning application

Planning applications for the various sub-projects are in process

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The planning application is made. Depending on the project, this can be a simple application to the respective authorities or a more intricate process that involves various expert opinions and preliminary approvals from other authorities and political parties prior to application. In this phase we closely monitor all processes and communication between the project team, authorities, political parties and neighbours, and pay particular attention to the public relations and communication strategy.

Tender, tender return analysis and contract award

Stay tuned.

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For simple projects, tender and procurement can be conducted using the design plans of phase 32. For larger, more complex and in particular hospitality projects, where general contracting might be envisioned, we always recommend conducting the tender and procurement phase after the detail design. For each trade and work we tender, we select a minimum of three contractors. Once we receive the tender returns, we analyse each offer and prepare an offer comparison. We then shortlist 2-3 contractors and hold negotiation rounds. Next, we review our offer comparison according to the negotiations, and prepare our recommendation to the client. Once agreed, we prepare the relevant contracts in consultation with the project lawyers, and finalise the contract award and appointment.

Detail design

Excavation is scheduled to commence in Q2 2023

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The architect, interior designer, engineers and consultants develop the detail design. Using the latest technology, they create the necessary plans and document packages. We ensure the design, specifications and budget are in line with the project brief, help the client evaluate the detail design and draft comments, keep the project schedule up to date, provide regular reports, and review and approve professional fee invoices prior to payment by the client.


Detail design has begun on certain areas of the project, as well as the mock-up room.

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Construction starts. Depending on the strategy (general contractor versus individual contractors), we manage the contractors with daily on- and off-site visits. During this phase and under our leadership, engineers and other consultants also have certain designated construction management roles. We make daily site visits, ensure that progress is in line with the approved schedule, that construction is according to plans, and that costs are according to budget. We review and approve all professional fees and contractor invoices prior to payment by the client, to make sure that construction carried out is in line with contracted terms and services. For larger and more complex projects, such as hotels and resorts, we start the tender and procurement processes for FF&E and OS&E.

Handover and closeout

Handover and closeout is scheduled for 2027

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We manage the handover and closeout process. We carry out detailed site reviews for each work category – MEP (mechanical, electrical, plumbing), joinery, paintwork and so on, and produce a detailed snags list. We then oversee the snags work to ensure that everything is remedied to the required specifications and quality standards. We ensure the client receives all “as built” construction documents and plans, as well as maintenance manuals and guides. We make sure the handover is properly carried out, as befits the type and complexity of the project.