Michael van Orsouw24.08.2023Sisi, the famous Empress Elisabeth, was a much more frequent visitor to Switzerland than previously known. She visited the Bernese Oberland in 1892, where she very much enjoyed a local product normally used as pig feed...
Michael van Orsouw06.07.2023Nowadays, the VW camper van has cult status. It was invented by a Dutchman named Bernadus Pon who spent a lot of time in Switzerland after building a villa there. In 1965, Pon, who by then had become very wealthy, gifted every schoolchild in a small Swiss village with a savings account.
Michael van Orsouw13.06.2023Celebrated actor-director Charlie Chaplin died in 1977 and was buried in the cemetery at Corsier-sur-Vevey. But then, grave robbers dug up his body and demanded large sums of money from the family for its return. A macabre story that could have come straight from one of Chaplin's films, but did in fact happen.
Michael van Orsouw11.05.2023César Ritz was not only a pioneering Swiss hotelier, he also established a luxurious way of life that was immortalised in a song. ‘Puttin’ on the Ritz’ became a global hit after Ritz himself had sadly died following a decades-long battle with depression.
Michael van Orsouw27.04.2023Roman Scherer’s highly specialised factory in Kriens manufactured wood type for the whole world – including for Pravda, the official newspaper of Russia’s Communist party in Moscow.
Michael van Orsouw31.08.2022In 1909 the Austrian Emperor Franz Joseph visited Switzerland. It could have been an official state visit with the mighty Emperor, but it turned out just a “courtesy call”. The Emperor didn’t set foot on Swiss soil, and was gone again after just a quarter of an hour. A strange episode in Swiss foreign affairs.
Michael van Orsouw27.07.2022Opinions were divided on naturopath Arnold Rikli. He delivered his holistic form of treatment, which involved bathing in the nude, at a sanatorium he had set up himself. Not in Switzerland, but in what is now Slovenia. The Monte Verità counterculture group was inspired, ultimately, by many of Rikli’s ideas and practices.
Michael van Orsouw01.06.2022Queen Elizabeth II was at the head of the British Royal Family for 70 years. The House of Windsor maintains a close relationship with Switzerland – not politically, but on a more private level. Here we take a look behind at the scenes at the connection between the Swiss and the Royals.