Talk Of The Town - Zurich

Written by
Katharina Blansjaar

Pricey – but including freebies
After a few weeks in an almost paralysing state of shock, we have now all come to terms with it: we live in the world’s most expensive city. Following the currency-shock, The Economist magazine found it necessary to quickly correct its recently published rating and put Zurich on top of the list. So what has happened since? Nothing much really. Our European friends seem a little more worried about visiting us (typical question: will I be able to buy a cup of coffee?), but they need not fear, as some of the best spring activities in town come for free: get a bike from Züri rollt and cruise around town, visit the Botanical Garden or take a hike up Üetliberg. And don’t forget to attend the 'Sechseläuten' on April 13th. Buying a cup of coffee for the quite typical price of CHF 5 might hurt a little less with this knowledge. 

Last minute visits
However, some of the best current exhibitions do come with an entry fee. While the permanent collection of the Kunsthaus can be visited for free on Wednesdays, a glimpse of its 'Japanese Inspirations' with works of Monet, Gauguin, Van Gogh and a beautiful selection of Japanese woodcuts will cost you (a well invested) CHF 22. And do hurry – it’s only on until early May. Other exhibitions you must see before they close: 'Kosmos' at the Museum Rietberg (until May 31st) and the beautiful 'Paper Cuts' at the Landesmuseum (until April 19th).

Not on a diet
While those exhibitions might deliver food for thought, many locals seem to engage in more bodily pleasures. Some of Zurich’s hottest new eateries have clearly been designed for those with a lust for flesh, a trend in which restaurant 'AuGust' at the Widder Hotel is taking the front rank. Argentinian beef specialist 'Gaucho' has meanwhile opened a second venue (named 'Gaucho 2' - what else?), and the hip and cool will try their best to secure themselves a table at April pop up space 'Hood Food' at Mühle Tiefenbrunnen – a gourmet experience revolving around locally sourced organic pork meat. However, there is hope for those of us who live happily meat-free. Not only has organic supermarket chain Alnatura opened its first branch in the centre of town (offering lunchtime take out and a lot of products for vegetarians and vegans), Tibits restaurant has also introduced its 'Vegan Tuesdays' - one day a week with a fully vegan buffet. And rumour has it they’re working on a delicious new treat – their very own veggie burger! By the way, if you happen to pass by Hiltl – try theirs, because it has recently been improved with the help of expert customers.

Wild nights
Some of us might long for a bit of exercise after all this food talk, and what could be better than a decent night out? If you haven’t yet heard about the rebirth of the legendary 'Karaoke from Hell', the show that ruled the Mascotte club for ten years, then it’s about time you checked it out. Reinstated at Kinski (every Thursday from 10pm), it features the original line-up, including its unrivalled host Martin Ain Stricker. He happens to be the man you might have missed at the monthly Plaza burlesque show 'Ohh! La la! Chérie!', but charming showgirl Bonnie Fox has taken over his mic and is much more than just a replacement – go check her out on April 27th as the show’s summer break is approaching! Need more female power? Head to Revier on April 10th when the club introduces its new night 'Femme Fatal' with an all-female DJ line-up.

And in case you’re feeling a bit sweaty after being cramped up in a dark and hot club – a refreshing chill is already on the agenda: Zurich’s badis open on the 9th of May!

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