Sledding Into The Weekend

Sledding into the weekend… something I can only recommend when being in Gstaad. Take this refreshing break! Even the ride up to the Eggli with the modern gondola lift designed by Porsche is an unforgettable experience. It effortlessly covers the 500 meters in altitude in just 5 minutes and offers breathtaking views of Gstaad and the mountain panorama surrounding the village. You can rent the sleds when you buy your ticket for the gondola ride and take it with you up the mountain. Just make sure that you are dressed with several layers as it can be very cold.

However before sledding down the Eggli Run back to Gstaad, enjoy a fondue on the terrace of the Bergrestaurant Eggli that offers delicious food and drinks for all tastes. There is also a very instagrammable spot with the #Gstaad.

Opening hours: December 16, 2022 until March 12, (daily 9:00 am – 4:30 pm)
Reservations at +41 33 748 95 59 or rest.eggli@bergbahnen-gstaad.ch.

Another great experience is the «Fondue Night on Eggli». When the sun goes down and the lights go on in the valley, peace has returned to the Eggli. On this special occasion, you have the unique opportunity to enjoy this unique atmosphere on the mountain. After enjoying a fondue à discretion (meaning as much as you like), you can sled down the Eggli Run back to Gstaad.

Dates: Every Thursday in February, 02/09/16 and 23, 2023. Reservations are required.
For more information, visit the website please.
If you like my outfit, click here for more information.

LoL, Sandra

Photos: © Sandra Bauknecht
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Hublot – Back to the Matterhorn

For the fourth time, Hublot celebrates its special relationship with Zermatt, the iconic Swiss Alpine resort town nestled at the base of the Matterhorn. Two original new creations are being released to mark this special occasion.

At first glance, they have nothing in common. On one side is the steep, jagged and rugged shape of the Matterhorn, carved out in rock over hundreds of millions of years. On the other, the mastery of perfect, modern lines by a contemporary manufacture. Yet, once again, Hublot has fused the elements and brought to life a creation that glorifies the silhouette of Switzerland’s most famous mountain within its legendary Big Bang.

However, this is not just any representation of the Matterhorn. It is depicted as it appears from Zermatt, because the Matterhorn has been the main witness to the union between Hublot and the iconic Alpine resort. For the last five years, the two entities have joined forces to celebrate their «Swissness». For example, Hublot has set up the most traditional of its boutiques at the heart of the resort, made entirely from wood in the purest respect for local architectural traditions. The Hublot boutique has since become an integral part of the charm and the magic of the area.

Hublot Boutique in Zermatt

Of course, Hublot, as an advocate for emotions and meaningful connections, was always going to take it to the next level! To reach the summit of the Zermatt ski resort, visitors now take the Hublot-Express (Gant-Blauherd), one of the resort’s most modern cable cars, built in 2016, and reaching an altitude of 2600 metres. The goal? To carve through fresh snow, or powder for more accomplished skiers, and arrive at Chez Vrony, the century-old family restaurant for whom Hublot is also the «Official Timekeeper». Click here for my first time in Zermatt in 2015 or click here to see me wearing the previous model, the Big Bang All Black Zermatt.

The new Big Bang Zermatt is part of this local dynamic, combining the best of Swiss tradition with modern watchmaking. The latest pieces in a collection created in 2017, the two new Big Bangs explore the two faces of watchmaking, like a climber scaling the two iconic faces of the Matterhorn.

Each version is available in a steel case – a return to the basics that has not been used by Hublot in a Zermatt special edition since 2018. The material, which features alternating polished and satin-finished surfaces, echoes the unique reflection of schist, the typical Swiss stone similar to slate which forms a large part of the Matterhorn. The sunray finished dial will illuminate this with an ever-changing light, like the faces of the Matterhorn under the continuously shifting sun.


These two editions both boast the special Big Bang Zermatt feature of which collectors are so fond: the Matterhorn at 9 o’clock on the men’ model, and at 3 o’clock on the ladies’ model. The latter boasts a bezel set with 36 diamonds which also punctuate the hour indices. Each bezel is equipped with screws made from titanium, a material inspired by the needs of mountaineers, whose equipment must be both light and strong. Once again, Hublot has mastered the fusion of substance and shape, colour and material, Alpine and watchmaking symbols.

Both versions are powered by a self-winding chronograph and complimented by two nubuck straps: the first in slate grey, the second in snow white, in a dual tribute to the iconic colours of Zermatt.

The BIG BANG STEEL ZERMATT is available for CHF 14’300.00 and the BIG BANG STEEL DIAMONDS ZERMATT is available for CHF 18’100.00.

LoL, Sandra

Photos: © Hublot
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Decadent Dinner Party

Recently, I followed YSL Beauty‘s invitation to a decadent dinner party that took place at Die Giesserei Oerlikon in Zurich. The YSL Beauty team transformed this amazing location into the most instagrammable spots with different areas all dedicated to the Maison’s iconic products, from the famous Libre scent, to make-up and skincare. After the dinner, we went downstairs to the underground club where we danced all night long.

The dress code said «all black with a touch of decadence» and needless to say, I went for a head-to-toe Saint Laurent outfit. All details of my look will be coming up shortly. Stay tuned and in the meantime enjoy the impressions of this fun night.

LoL, Sandra

Photos: © Sandra Bauknecht / David Biedert Photography #indulgeingold #yslbeauty
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MAC Bubbles and Bows Party at Kraftwerk

You know the Christmas season is around the corner when brands start to show up with their festive collections. This season, I was invited by MAC Cosmetics for the launch of Bubbles & Bows at Kraftwerk in Zurich. The evening was such a great success with lots of magical surprises from a drag queen’s live act to dancers performing in big plastic bubbles.

As the name and packaging suggests, the MAC Cosmetics Bubbles & Bows party kits and limited edition make-up are festive and fun – and very sparkly, too. The collection is not only a perfect holiday gift, but also a treat for yourself. With everything you need to create a custom going-out look this winter, from glowy eye creations and signature fluttery lashes, to bold festive lip shades, the magic will be all yours thanks to the legendary cosmetic brand. In stores now.

LoL, Sandra

Photos: © Sandra Bauknecht / David Biedert Photography
#MACHoliday #MACBubblesAndBows @MACCosmeticsSwitzerland
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My Look: Kispi

Finally after three years, the Kispiball (Kispi is an abbreviation for Kinderspital which means children’s hospital in German) took place again at the wonderful Baur au Lac hotel in Zurich. It is one of my favorite charity events of the Swiss social calendar that raises money for the city’s children’s hospital. I danced all night long in my Dolce & Gabbana gown and enjoyed being among my dear friends.

My look: Strapless polka-dot silk-organza gown, and «’L’Amore È Bellezza» ribbon belt, both by Dolce & Gabbana, pink double bow satin pumpsicon by Mach & Mach, Tro crystal-embellished leather shoulder bag by Oscar de la Renta, and crystal-embellished snake necklace by Alessandra Rich.

LoL, Sandra

Photos: © Sandra Bauknecht / David Biedert Photography
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A Monday Morning with Aveda

In general, hair salons are closed on Mondays (actually not sure if this is only a European thing…), so it was a lovely surprise when I received the invite from AVEDA to get spoilt on a Monday morning at the hair dresser.

As you know, I have been using AVEDA products for a long time. I admit that I always switch between brands or product lines during the month as for me personally speaking my hair gets a kick from the alternation. However, the reason why I am a big fan of the house, that was acquired in 1997 by the Estée Lauder Companies, is that AVEDA is a cruelty-free brand with a mission to care for the world by creating vegan, high-performance hair, skin and body formulas for beauty professionals and consumers, all with sustainability at heart. Green chemistry at its best.

During an intimate breakfast at Eddine Belaid in Zurich, we learnt a lot about the history of the brand. The face of the campaign, Anja Leuenberger, was also present and told us about her experiences with the hair products, that helped her to finally achieve longer, healthier hair.

Aveda was founded in 1978 by Horst Rechelbacher, a pioneer of holistic beauty, and a champion of environmental responsibility.  Born in Austria in 1941 to an herbalist mother and a shoemaker father, Horst began working in the salon across the street at the age of 14. «I was not a good student at all but I was very eager to be something different,» he said. Horst was a natural talent, and by 17 he was working as a stylist at a prestigious salon in Rome, tending to international celebrities. By the young age of 20 he had won the European Hairstyling Championship, which he used as a springboard to tour Europe and the United States. «What is a calling? It’s like almost a fire inside me and it keeps me alive,» he said.

He opened his first salon in Minneapolis as a European hairdresser, and then several others, becoming a successful salon entrepreneur in his twenties. In the late sixties, Horst suffered burn out from overwork and recovered thanks to herbal remedies prepared by his mother, as well as to the practice of yoga and meditation. Following a retreat in India in 1970, Horst integrated ayurveda in his lifestyle and his salon business model.

He adopted a holistic thinking, the belief that individual beauty is directly linked to the beauty of the world around us. His were ideas that would revolutionize the beauty industry. In India, he also received the inspiration to create Aveda. With Shiv Nath Tandon, whom he met in an Indian ashram, he developed his first Clove Shampoo in a kitchen sink in Minneapolis, together with doctors of ayurveda, Vinod and Kusum Upadhyay. All have continued to work with Aveda since the early 1970s.

Out of this well-timed collaboration, AVEDA, which stands is Sanskrit for «all knowledge», was born in 1978 with the vision to bring beauty professionals botanical products that would be good for them, their guests, and the Earth and its communities. Horst’s foresight is a testament to how far ahead of his time he was, and although no longer with us his legacy lives on in countless ways.

Horst Rechelbacher taught us that: «Every day presents every one of us with the opportunity to create positive effects. Even the simplest, seemingly insignificant choices we make in our daily lives—what to eat, what to wear, what to use on our bodies and in our homes—have a ripple effect that reaches far beyond us personally.»

Living up to this legacy, I was spoilt this Monday morning. The ritual started with smelling the different essential oils AVEDA has to offer. After choosing my favorite one, I got a neck and shoulder massage, that AVEDA salons are known for. The journey of relaxation starts already then.

I then received two different in-salon treatments after washing my hair, first the famous SHINE TREATMENT, that helps improve the condition of damaged hair and only takes 5 minutes. It refreshes your color, tints your natural hair, and corrects uneven tones or adds clear, eye-catching shine. It lasts up to 20 washes.

And as the second part of the ritual the BOTANICAL REPAIR™ professional treatment that transform your hair with molecular plant repair to strengthen strands from the inside out. Dry, damaged hair is instantly transformed with stronger, softer, visibly smoother and shiner hair in just one treatment. It is plant-powered, bond building and scientifically formatulated to treat three key layers of hair, so that it is transformed from the inside out. The hair is visibly revived and shinier after the treatment.

With the AVEDA Botanical Repair™ Strengthening Overnight Serum for home, you can get healthy hair while you are sleeping.

I received the treatment at Eddine Belaid in Zurich, an AVEDA exclusive salon.

I have also some great news for you. Until November 4, 2022 you receive a 30% off site wide discount on all AVEDA products with the code AVFAMILY.

Happy Shopping!

LoL, Sandra

Photos: Courtesy of AVEDA and © Sandra Bauknecht
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ZFF 2022 Opening Night

Every fall, the Zurich Film Festival takes place and provides a platform for the most promising filmmakers from around the globe. It aims to promote exchange between emerging directors, successful film workers, the film industry and the general public by showing the year’s greatest discoveries and most anticipated films.

Wearing a black Monique Lhuillier gown and Christian Louboutin shoes and bag.

I attended the opening night of the 18th Zurich Film Festival that kicked off at Zurich Convention Center with the European premiere of the inspirational Netflix production THE SWIMMERS. The film was presented personally by director Sally El Hosaini and actor Matthias Schweighöfer. The President of the Swiss Confederation Ignazio Cassis, who had just returned from NYC, emphasized the unifying effect of cinema on people and set the mood for the 11 festival days with his speech.

The cast of THE SWIMMERS as well as the real Yusra Martini on stage at the opening night.

I can absolutely recommend watching this amazing movie that tells the true story of sisters Yusra and Sarah Mardini, both talented swimmers, who were forced to flee the civil war sweeping their native Syria in 2015. They make the dangerous crossing to Europe in a refugee boat. When the engine fails on the open sea, they use ropes to pull the boat behind them for hours, saving numerous lives. Once in Germany, they met a swimming teacher (played by Matthias Schweighöfer) who trained them for the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio.

«It is not just an inspirational film that reinforces our belief in the good of people,» explained Artistic Director Christian Jungen in his speech, «With war once again raging in Europe, it is also an extremely important film of our time, because it throws a spotlight on the plight of refugees. Cinema is the medium of empathy that allows us to view the world through the eyes of others.»

The Zurich Film Festival runs until October 2, showing 146 films, including a record 38 world and European premieres with star guests like Eddie Redmayne, Charlotte Gainsbourg, Sir Ben Kingsley, Liam Neeson, Diane Kruger, Til Schweiger, Daniel Brühl and Iris Berben in attendance.

Christian Jungen, Elke Mayer, Matthias Schweighöfer, Ignazio Cassis, Yusra Mardini, Sally El Hosaini, Nathalie Issa, Corine Mauch, Sven Spannekrebs at the Opening Night.

If you didn’t get a chance to watch it, THE SWIMMERS will be available on Netflix from November 23, 2022. Please watch the movie, it will change the way you look at the refugee situation tremendously.

LoL, Sandra

Photos: Courtesy of ZFF, © Sandra Bauknecht / David Biedert Photography
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Vive la Légèreté

This week, Hermès celebrated its theme of the year «Vive la Légèreté» in Zurich in an intimate celebration at Kunsthaus. The motto was translated in multiple ways into a breathtaking setup, from the airy clouds decorating the swings where you could take a photo to the dreamlike pegasus installations at the open ceiling. Yvonne Leuthard, Press & Influence Manager Hermès Switzerland, explained to me that those pieces were used at another event in Paris before. Sustainable luxury is something very dear to the French Maison.

Ease became a subject of inspiration to which creatives and craftsmen were invited to respond. Hermès has always been a house dedicated to the quality and sensuality of materials and textures. Known for its precision and artistic complicities, a plethora of its offerings feature silk, soft and light as air.

Thierry Outin, General Director Hermès Switzerland, Sara Mathivet, Store Manager Hermès Zurich, and Florian Craen, Executive Vice-President Sales & Distribution, who had flown in from Paris for the night, welcomed the guests. Dancers dressed in floral costumes performed at the cocktail reception as well at the dinner and made the celebratory event a success.

The food was vegetarian with several outstanding courses prepared by Franzoli, from a fresh herb consommé to a «fir branch» to an amazing pavlova that was presented in a shape of a mountain. The titles of the courses were very pictorial, «the lake», «the undergrowth», «the meadow», «the glacier», «the forest», and «the summit», all inspired by Swiss landscaping.

The culmination of the night was a «golden rain» from above that gave this feeling of lightness and hope. Lightness is when the everyday becomes miraculous, it is in the gentleness of a smile, the tenderness of a touch, the gracefulness of a gesture and the beauty of a night like this.

Thank you, Hermès, for having me!

LoL, Sandra

My outfit was perfectly matching the theme with my winged heels and the cloudy skirt.

The Hermès crocodile gang.

With Kim Dang from NZZ

Photos:  © Sandra Bauknecht
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Hosting a Wonderful Event with Patek Philippe

Recently, I had the honor to host a wonderful event with Patek Philippe to celebrate their wonderful ladies watches in collaboration with Beyer, the oldest authorized watch and jewelry retailer in the world. The evening took place at Atelier Peter Nitz in Zurich Niederdorf.

On my wrist the beautiful complicated watch 4948R with annual calendar and moon phases.

Women and watches. It’s complicated! In today’s world, ladies are as active as men in business, social and many other life spheres. This has obviously an affect on their style, how they incorporate fashion into their daily life. There is indeed a huge trend in women being interested in complicated watches. On display at the event were many watch models combining function with fashion. Patek Philippe is the perfect choice for women who are intrigued by complications as much as those attracted by appearance.

From left to right: Philippe Meyer, Beyer Head of Marketing, Serge Forster, Patek Philippe Boutique Manager Zurich, my humble self, Peter Nitz, and Alexandre Pouly, Patek Philippe Area Manager.

Since Patek Philippe was founded in 1839, it has been devoted to female clients. Its pocket and pendant watches, lavishly decorated with refined artisanal techniques, attracted sophisticated female customers. Queen Victoria purchased a timepiece in blue enamel in 1851 at the London Universal Exhibition. The manufacture leveraged its craft with complicated ladies’ watches, creating the first Swiss-made ladies wristwatch for a Hungarian countess in 1868. The manufacture’s first chiming wristwatch in 1916 was a ladies’ five-minute repeater.

A growing demand for wristwatches over the ensuing decades allowed Patek Philippe to demonstrate affinity with female tastes by crafting many models and collections. In 1999, Patek Philippe released the Ladies Twenty~4, which proved an outstanding success. Its unique name showing that it is the perfect companion for any time of day or night. In 2018, Patek Philippe further developed the collection with a self-winding wristwatch. The Twenty~4 Automatic: a timepiece for modern, self-confident women with its sleek elegance complements every facet of daily life.

Understanding the savoir-faire that goes into a Patek Philippe watch is mind-blowing, whether ultra thin, simple or complicated, the precision of Patek Philippe movements fitted in manual winding watches is impressive. The same goes for  the various self-winding movements with a number of high performance mechanisms. Even the quartz movements of Patek Philippe watches are built with the same high quality standards that apply to its mechanical movements. On top, from marquetry, gemsetting, guilloché, chainsmithery, and more, the specialist artistic techniques have a long and glorious history at the Swisswatch manufacture.

One of the reasons why luxury watches are typically so expensive is because the supply of many timepieces does not come close to matching the demand. The best and outstanding quality is at the core of watchmaking at Patek Philippe. You might accuse the brand of intentionally cutting supply to drive prices up, but in reality, their strategy is about keeping the value of their products high by retaining a sense of exclusivity.

During the past years, the luxury watch market has been booming and prices have been skyrocketing. Buying the right watch can be a great investment, and looking at recent auctions, the brand to invest in is by far Patek Philippe. The most expensive watch ever sold at auction worldwide is the Patek Philippe Grandmaster Chime Ref. 6300A-010, which fetched US $ 31.19 million in Geneva on November 9, 2019, and the most expensive pocket watch is the Patek Philippe Henry Graves Supercomplication, fetching US $ 23.98 million in Geneva on November 11, 2014. Until now, at least 101 watches have been sold at auction for over two million US dollars, and at least 160 watches have been sold at auction for over 1.5 million US dollars. Among the top 10 of these watches, eight are Patek Philippe watches.

Serge Forster, Patek Philippe Boutique Manager Zurich, in conversation with a guest.

If you are interested in buying a watch, I always recommend building a relationship with an authorized dealer of your choice, and accept that you may face significant waiting times to receive your dream model. Don’t forget, anticipation is the greatest joy. I am waiting myself for the Aquanaut Luce Ref. 5267-200A in olive green, see in the collage below.

Beyer Chronometrie on Bahnhofstrasse in Zurich is Switzerland’s oldest watch retailer. Eight generations of the Beyer family business have looked after the most beautiful aspects of time for more than 260 years. Since 2011, the first retailer-managed Patek Philippe boutique in Switzerland has been handled by Beyer. With a strong emphasis on tradition, you will get the best service and help in finding your dream watch.

During the event, I held a presentation about the newest fashion and watch trends that I will happily share with you to finalize your choice. Personally speaking, I have always tried to foster an understanding of the detailed craftsmanship that goes into a luxury product, be it a watch, a dress or a bag. Appreciating the work behind the product and seeing it as an investment for many years to come is sustainable shopping at its core.

That evening guests were invited to explore that leathercraft is an art form driven by a passion for exquisite materials and goods. Guided by master craftsman Peter Nitz, the ladies experienced how a tailor-made and handmade watch travel case is created. Peter and Julien explained the  process and everyone was able to try the stitching themselves. Leather crafting, just like any other skill, requires not only practice but also the correct techniques upon which to properly build those skills. Peter Nitz covers all aspects of leather crafting and leatherworking.

Julien, who worked for Hermès in Paris before joining the Atelier Peter Nitz, is explaining the first steps of the stitching process.

In his atelier you can create exquisite bespoke luxury bags and leathergoods of your own with him and his team. You can also take private lessons or participate in group courses, either as a complete beginner or experienced craftsman to learn how to create a bag. Soon, Peter will open its first store in Zurich’s Niederdorf close to his atelier where customers can explore his line of bespoke and beautifully crafted handbags.

After having heard all about the newest color trends, the ladies had a lot of fun choosing the perfect color combinations for their handmade watch travel case they were gifted with. While enjoying great food and a glass of champagne, the ladies indulged in wonderful conversations with each other. Coming back to women and watches, it is actually not  so complicated … we just want the best!

LoL, Sandra

Photos: Fabrizio Vignali @iziophotography for Patek Philippe and © Sandra Bauknecht
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10 Years of La Vie Est Belle

10 years ago, I attended the launch event of Lancôme’s iconic «La Vie Est Belle» Eau de Parfum on a rainy day at Dolder in Zurich. This September, the French beauty house invited me again to celebrate one decade of its intoxicating notes with a fun party at Samigo Amusement. The weather was much better and the location offered all sorts of instagrammable spots and entertainment, from glitter tattoos to turning the wheel of fortune.

Until today, Julia Roberts is the face of the campaign. Her radiant personality and iconic smile symbolize the epitome of feminine grace and happiness that the scent aims to capture. With notes of Iris spring flowers, intoxicating patchouli, delicious praline and sensual warm vanilla, it is a gourmand scent. Over the years, several flankers have been launched. The fragrance is a true embodiment of Lancôme’s heritage with the «Crystal Smile» bottle, first designed in 1949 by Georges Delhomme.

Top notes: Pear and black currant
Middle notes: Orange blossom, jasmine and iris
Base notes: Praline, tonka bean, vanilla and patchouli

Life is beautiful – this was the message of the night! A beautiful event with memories to be cherished for a long time.

LoL, Sandra

Photos: © Sandra Bauknecht
@lancomeofficial #Lancome #LaVieEstBelle #MakeTodayBeautiful

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