There is hardly a city where art, architecture, and nature interact better than in Basel. The paths are short, and people are cosmopolitan. With its fantastic museums, architecture from renowned Pritzker Prize winners, and its special location at the border triangle, the city has long played in the international league. Basel’s proximity to France and Germany is particularly noticeable in its cosmopolitanism.
This month, I’m looking forward to seeing excellent art through great shows, like at Fondation Beyeler, where visitors can find classic modern and contemporary art. This summer, I am very happy that we will present the first exhibition in Europe of a career-spanning selection of Rudolf Stingel’s major series of works. Besides that, I am more than delighted that our prestigious exhibition “The Young Picasso—Blue and Rose Periods” is extended until June 16, which means that guests of Art Basel will also be able to see the impressive composition of Picasso’s pictures from his early phase. I recommend allowing enough time to rest in the idyllic garden and watch Alexander Calder’s Tree moving slightly in the wind.
Basel is also special for its lifestyle destinations. My favorite restaurant is Chez Donati. Michelin-starred dining can be enjoyed at Cheval Blanc or Stucki. Less expensive but also nice options are Rhyschänzli, Klingeli, La Fourchette, or Zum Goldenen Fass—all offer fine food. An Italian classic is Bodega zum Strauss. Under the old chestnut trees in the garden of the Kunsthalle is perfect not only for an excellent dinner, but also for a drink.
Looking for something chic? You’ll find it at the Hotel Les Trois Rois. Conservative? On the medieval cathedral square. Cool? On the terrace of the Warteck Areal. Democratic? At the Rhine riverbank.
In summer, the riverside transforms into a promenade with Mediterranean flair. It is definitely worth stopping at one of the many buvettes and having an aperitif while the orange-red sun sets behind the roofs of the Old Town. During the day, you see many people swimming downstream in the Rhine. This is always worth doing while you are visiting Basel in summer. Nothing is more invigorating than a dip in the river. Get in at the riverbanks close to Museum Tinguely and float to the buvettes near the Kaserne. Late-night bars, such as Bar Renée or Grenzwert, are almost legendary. If you still have energy, watch out for Nordstern’s DJ lineup, where famous international DJs spin and you can dance until the sun rises.
And, of course, I’m looking forward to having inspiring conversations and enjoying fantastic parties—such as our sun.set event with DJs Jamie Jones and Yare on Saturday, June 15, at 4:30 p.m.