Isenau 360 - Authentic Alpine Resort

Isenau 360°? A Lab for Soft Tourism and for the renewal and operation of the Isenau resort. Four-season soft tourism, eco-friendliness and authenticity are our priorities.
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Message from the Isenau360 Working group

Les Diablerets, 17th July 2019

Ladies and Gentlemen, Dear Friends of Isenau,

 A few weeks ago the Isenau360 Working Group announced that an appeal had been filed with the Swiss Federal Court by one of the opponents (the second opponent, an environmental organization, having not appealed – a very promising sign for the eco-friendly approach of Isenau360) and that we would use the additional time to continue to make progress on the Isenau360 project, which was presented on April 14, at the “Claude Nicollier” congress hall, Les Diablerets.

Today the Isenau360 Working Group owes you some information on the progress of its work…

The Isenau360 Working Group has contacted all relevant stakeholders to ensure that the motivation remains present and that this new procedure (filing of this appeal with the Swiss Federal Court) does not involve a high risk for the project. We are pleased to confirm that, at present, the light remains green and that this legal procedure only means a delay in time, but certainly not a final stop for the Isenau360 project.

The motivation of the Working Group is intact and this additional time will enable us to finalize and improve our file before presenting it for validation to the relevant authorities and stakeholders.

In the coming weeks, the following actions are planned:

  • Validation with Télé Villars Gryon Diablerets (TVGD SA) of the best scenario for the reconstruction and future operation of the resort (new gondola and skilifts). Discussions are moving on very positively around this point,
  •  Finalization of the business plan.
  • Final analysis of the business plan by an external mountain resort expert to obtain a neutral validation on the feasibility of the project and its profitability over time.

These actions will be carried out between now and the end of October. They will allow us to present the final business plan to the key partners of the project and evaluate its viability, on the basis of a more complete file.

If the updated version of the project convinces all partners, it will then be submitted to the Department of Economical Promotion and Innovation of the Canton of Vaud (SPEI) and, as soon as the oppositions are lifted, to the Federal Office of Transportation (OFT).

In summary, the Isenau360 project continues as announced and we still need your help: we will move on with the consolidation of the projects’ funding and you may become a donor or increase your contribution via the form available here.

The Working Group will also be looking for partners / sponsors interested in supporting this unique 4-season, eco-friendly and innovative lab.  New information will be published on a regular basis and you may always send your questions and suggestions to info@isenau360.ch.

The door of GT Isenau360 is always open to those who wish to bring their stone(s) to the building, because Isenau360 is and will remain a community project, focused on the future of the whole region. In addition, the Isenau Foundation and the Isenau360 Working Group have agreed to consider a common approach until the completion of the Isenau360 project.

A permanent collaboration is set up with immediate effect and the initiators of the project will officially participate in the Foundations’ operations, whilst the Isenau360 project is endorsed by all the involved stakeholders. 

Long life to Isenau360 !!!

 

The Isenau project is still possible… we must just transform this opportunity into a success.

A four-season resort

In winter, thanks to its natural snow cover. In summer, with its flora and fauna. In spring, when nature awakens. In autumn, when it becomes generous and colorful. Isenau, a pure happiness for 4 seasons.

km slopes

km hiking trails

seasons

Key competencies

The working group is a group of people with a strong link to Les Diablerets and the Isenau estate. Its participants voluntarily contribute their skills and professional networks to develop a Tourism Laboratory for the reconstruction and exploitation of the Isenau estate.

If you are interested in sharing your ideas or know-how, we would be happy to receive your proposals.

Communication

Composed of marketing specialists, traditional and/or digital communication experts, content editors and a graphic designer, this working group focuses on building a communication strategy and coordinating the related tactics for Isenau360.

Ecoresponsability, durability, green tourism

Composed of various profiles all showing a very high interest for ecofriendly ideas and sensible to the major challenge of global warming, this working group identifies and evaluates the feasibility of 4-season ecofriendly activities, which could match the Isenau360 positioning. It is also here to make sure the Isenau360 remains globally and over time as an eco-friendly project.

Financials

Financials are a key aspect of the project. Isenau360 can count on top-level financial experts, mastering business plans in the field of tourism and related fields, with the aim of securing the long-term financing and profitability of the project.

Cable-car and skilifts, technical aspects

Composed of specialists of cable-cars, skilifts and other technical questions, this working group evaluates all the available options for the renovation of the cable-car and skilifts. Furthermore, they are also planning the long-term maintenance of these infrastructures

Strategic contacts

With various profiles and networks, this working group maintains a close relationship with partners and key players of Isenau360.

Restaurant and related infrastructures

Also composed of various profiles, from food lovers to catering specialists, this working group evaluates the technical possibilities for a full renovation of the existing restaurant and more broadly, an innovative concept integrating comfort, authentic local products and an environment-friendly approach.

Legal affairs

Composed of experts of legal affairs, this working group evaluates and plans all structural and governance aspects of Isenau360, aiming for a smooth and solid implementation of the project.

Members of the workgroup

They volunteer to make Isenau live again

Philippe Gallaz

Porte parole et coordination, groupes finances, restauration
LinkedIn

Plus d'infos...

Philippe Gallaz Ormonan d’origine et de coeur, Fort d’une expérience de plus de 25 années dans les domaines des technologies et des RHs, Philippe est au bénéfice d’une expérience avérée de management d’équipes et de projets, de gestion des opérations et du changement et d’entrepreunariat. Il a participé à la création et au développement de nombreuses sociétés en tant que fondateur, associé ou administrateur.

Thierry Weber

Coordination,Team ecoresponsability, durability and green tourism et communication
LinkedIn

Plus d'infos...

Médecin, Thierry Weber est partenaire-fondateur d’une agence de communication medico-scientifique européenne et est actif en consulting pour des start-ups en sciences de la vie et innovation. A ce titre, il a l’habitude de mener des projets assez complexes. Il enseigne notamment le marketing médical à l’Université de Lausanne. Son lien avec les Diablerets est très fort, puisque sa famille y monte, toujours en tant que résidente secondaire quatre saisons, depuis six générations. En participant au projet Isenau360, Thierry aimerait contribuer à redonner à ce village et ses habitants tout ce que sa famille a reçu d’eux et…boire du Bitter à Isenau en tongs.

 

Stéphane Bise

Coordination, Groupe, Juridique
LinkedIn

Plus d'infos...

Stéphane Bise, né à Ouchy (Lausanne), vivant à Lutry et résident secondaire aux Diablerets, est un amoureux du Canton de Vaud et un fan d’Isenau où il a appris à skier en famille. Au bénéfice d’une longue expérience entrepreneuriale dans les domaines des RH et de la prévoyance professionnelle, passionné de nouvelles technologies, disposant d’une solide formation juridique, Stéphane est prêt à mettre toutes ses compétences et son énergie au service du renouveau du domaine d’Isenau !

Eric Mermod

Coordination, Groupe Juridique, Remontées Mécaniques, Contacts Stratégiques
LinkedIn

Plus d'infos...

Eric Mermod, originaire d’Ormont-Dessous et domicilié à Ormont-Dessus, marche, skie, vole (jamais à la Coop) depuis 47 ans autour du massif des Diablerets. Membre du Conseil communal dès le début des années 90, ses engagements dans la commune ont été multiples que ce soit à la commission des finances, à l’Office du tourisme ou au sein du Glisse Club, association émérite qui a organisé les premières compétitions de monoski aux Pierres-Pointes et des championnats nationaux de snowboard dans les années 80-90 et sans parler des soirées du B’Bar à Mon Abri… Master en droit, il exerce ses activités dans la région lausannoise au sein du fonds de placements immobiliers La Foncière, côté en bourse, en tant que secrétaire général. Cet hyperactif, gère sa propre société de gestion de droits et conseils en business musical, myMusicRights Sàrl, pour le compte d’environ 250 artistes suisses, suisses-allemands (!) et étrangers, dont l’extraordinaire Bastian Baker bien connu des Ormonans, Sophie Hunger et la clique de Makala, Slimka et Di-Meh pour les plus jeunes ou Cédric Pescia pour les plus raisonnables. Engagé dès le départ pour créer ce projet communautaire d’Isenau360°, parce que on peut faire sans, mais ce serait quand même mieux avec!

Arnaud Ader

Team ecoresponsability, durability and green tourism

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Arnaud Ader grew up near Paris, arrived in Les Diablerets in 2008 to learn the job of carpenter and now practices as an independent carpenter. Married to a daughter of Ormonts, father, fervent ski mountaineer and of climbing, paragliding and hiking, he is very excited to give a hand and share his knowledge to serve a project like Isenau 360 degrees. His goal would be to share the happiness of being in the mountains and especially at Isenau where the great-grandparents of his three daughters were still producing cheese a few years ago ..

Catherine Borghi

Team ecoresponsability, durability and green tourism

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Born at the bottom of the Isenau area, this resort has been part of her life since her birth. At 18 months she was already taking the cable car built by her grandfather in 1953 and renovated by her father in 1974 to make her first turns in this beautiful setting, so enthusiastic to learn how to ski. And it was on the slopes of Isenau that her love and her passion for skiing started, which finally led her many years later to the Olympic Games. Retired from ski racing, she has since then taken over the family business of construction with her brother and remains very active in the ski environment as vice-president of the ski club Diablerets, but also a youth coach and member of the Diablerets Swiss ski school. She is also the mother of two boys who had the chance to just know the mythical red cabins. Cathy willingly gives her time and especially her experience acquired during her 20 years of competition that made her travel to ski resorts around the world, this to allow future generations to also discover this magical place of Isenau.

Janaïne Aymon

Team communication
LinkedIn

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Biography coming…

Alain Candelas

Team ecoresponsability, durability and green tourism

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Lovers of peaks since my early childhood, when I was born in the city, my desire has always been to live in the mountains. This dream came true in 2009 when I was able to build and settle in Les Diablerets with my wife and little boy.
The region and the estate of Isenau are magnificent, both for winter and summer activities.
The Isenau 360 project is crucial for our region and our local economy!
Independent architect for 24 years, I will be happy to put all my skills into this magnificent project.

Yves-Claude Aubert

Team Finances
LinkedIn

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Independent director & corporate advisor, Yves Claude has extensive experience in banking and financial services.
As a senior designer and entrepreneur, he led numerous strategic initiatives for the BCV Group from 1994 to 2006, both in the creation and management of new business models in Switzerland and abroad and in the management of change and growth.
Since 2007, Yves Claude has invested his time and energy in dynamic companies that share his entrepreneurial and innovative spirit. His main mandates as an independent director are with the banking group Reyl & Cie and the European broker Kepler Chevreux.
Yves Claude holds an Executive MBA from IMD and the degrees of Financial Analyst & Asset Manager from CFPI.

Cécile Duboeuf

Team restaurant and communication

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Cécile Duboeuf arrived in Les Diablerets at the age of 20 for a seasonal job in the restaurant industry and has never left the village, at least not for a very long time!

If her career has taken her to all corners of the world in various fields related to events, logistics and communication, she now manages a real estate agency in the heart of the resort.

Volunteer, rallying and reckless, this sportswoman puts her energy and passion at the disposal of a new challenge: to give birth to Isenau 360.

Vincent Bardy

Team ecoresponsability, durability and green tourism
LinkedIn

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Vincent Bardy worked for 5 years in luxury watchmaking, including 2 years in Germany. Then 12 years in the ski industry and the distribution of sports equipment. Also Lecturer at the HEG in Fribourg. Outdoor sports enthusiasts in winter and summer. A man of sound body and mind who loves Gruyère and good wine. Married, with two children, he has recently moved to the most beautiful village in the world!

Raphaël Dupertuis

Team communication
LinkedInInstagram

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Originally from the Ormonts, Raphael Dupertuis grew up outside of the valley but a part of his heart has always remained in this corner of paradise. Thanks to a collaboration with Glacier 3000, for whom he walks the tracks armed with his camera, Les Diablerets have almost become a second home for him and it is with great pleasure that he regularly visits the area. Photographer and freelance writer, he is also creator of websites, including the one of Isenau 360. For him, the friendly, family and natural sides of Isenau make it a destination of choice, fully in line with the philosophy of Les Diablerets. Isenau really deserves to be saved!

Michel Fontana

Team ecoresponsability, durability and green tourism
LinkedIn

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Biography coming soon

Jérémy Foster

Team ecoresponsability, durability and green tourism
LinkedIn

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Biography coming soon

Claude Lacroix

Team Restaurant

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Biography coming soon

Laurent Manzoni

Team ecoresponsability, durability and green tourism

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Biography coming soon

Alain Métraux

Team cable car, ski lifts and technicals aspects

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Alain Métraux, who has lived in Les Diablerets for almost thirty years, is a ski lift specialist and holds a federal certificate as a cable transport specialist. He has held various positions at Glacier 3000 and Le Meillerets, allowing him to gain extensive experience in all aspects of a ski lift company. He created his own company in 2012, MECANICAL, located in Vers l’Eglise in the building of the Busset service station and active in the sale and mechanical repair of all installations and machines for companies and private individuals. He also carries out machining and metal construction work. On occasion, he assumes the responsibility ad interim for the operation of ski lifts, as in Charmey in 2018. He was a member of the Communal Council for three terms. Passionate about mountain sports, Alain is a skier, a skier, a hiker, a walker and a mountain biker. He enjoys visiting foreign mountain destinations, which allows him to share the experience of other places.

Luc Péneveyre

Team ecoresponsability, durability and green tourism

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Biography coming soon

Myriam Pichard

Team communication
LinkedIn

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An assiduous secondary resident thanks to her grandparents, she, like many of us, learned to ski in Isenau. But she is suspected of having fallen in love with the Diablerets already after her first visit at the age of two weeks! Active member of the Glisse Club, she discovered event organization and communication.
At the skatepark, she meets her husband, you guessed it: an ormonan!
Her face is probably well known to you since she was in charge of the tourist office for 5 years, before joining Glacier 3000. Specialist in communication and digital strategy at Debout sur La Table, she finds in the 360* version of Isenau THE project for which she willingly makes her network and skills available on a voluntary basis.

Christoph Stoeri

Team cable car, ski lifts and technicals aspects
LinkedIn

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Christoph Stoeri, domiciled in Blonay, has owned for more than 15 years an apartment in Les Diablerets. Aged 59, an EPFL engineer in mechanics and holder of an MBA from HEC Lausanne, Christoph has assumed important responsibilities with Bombardier Transport, CFF Infrastructures (maintenance manager for all CFF infrastructures) and several private companies. He has managed large complex projects. Currently, he is the director of Kummler + Matter Romandie, a company of 150 people, which has produced, among other things, the cabling of the new lift installations at Meilleret. In private, he practices sports on Lake Geneva and in the mountains around Les Diablerets, with his wife Cornelia and two children Marie-Joe and Pablo: mountain biking, skiing, cross-country skiing, hiking and until recently, paragliding. He is engaged for the community as a member of Apcado des Diablerets, member of the municipal council in Blonay and chairman of its management committee.

Joan Trachsel

Team ecoresponsability, durability and green tourism
LinkedIn

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Joan Trachsel, native and resident of Les Diablerets, a young independent entrepreneur, who willingly makes available his skills for local associative events. Happy to participate in the adventure Isenau 360 in order to, among other things, compensate his vitamin D deficiencies at the bar of Floriette.

Anne-Marie Vial

Team ecoresponsability, durability and green tourism

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Anne-Marie Vial, binational German-“ormonanche”, doctor, mother of 2 children and married to a man from Fribourg, who succumbed to our beautiful valley.

I learned to ski at Isenau, as did my ancestors from Ormonts, as well as our children.

For the latter it was terrible to see the slopes disappear with the red gondolas.

I am very interested in ecotourism and am very concerned about the environmental challenges that we human beings will face in future.

Partners

We would like to thank all our excellent partners and advisors, who have supported us throughout the development of this project:

  • Mr Emmanuel Estoppey, Consultant Eqiilab
  • Mr Jean-Michel Stauffer, Innovaud
  • Mr Eric Nanchen, Fondation pour le Développement Durable en Montagne
  • Mr Jean-Chrishope Fallet, WWF Suisse
  • Mrs Laure-Emmanuelle Perret, Element Consulting (énergies renouvelables)
  • Les Diablerets Tourism Office

Hot News

Find here the latest news about our researches

Message from the GT, 14th april

The Isenau 360° Working Group would like to thank all the Friends of Isenau who have made it possible for us to carry out the project to date. Your valued and continuous support encourages us more than ever to continue! You will find the presentation shown tonight...

Message from the GT, 5th March 2019

Two of the representatives of the Isenau360 Working Group (WG) met with the Tourism Project Head at the Economy and Innovation Promotion Service - Canton of Vaud on Friday 22.02; all the work accomplished in the recent weeks by each and every member of the Isenau360...

Frequently Asked Questions

On the basis of your feedback, opinions, comments and ideas, we felt that it would be a good idea to create a Frequently Asked Questions section that would provide answers to some of the questions you may have and also clarify why some of the ideas submitted cannot be taken into account even if they are very good, in order to finally communicate in a transparent way on this issue.

Why is the project called Isenau 360 degrees?
The Isenau360 Working Group (WG) feels that Isenau must be positionned as a 360 degrees resort, with different types of revenues, in addition to skiing (2nd season activities, food and beverages, events, sponsoring, crowdfunding, grants for eco-tourism research programs, etc), to potentially reach a financial viability
Why is the new gondola described as «vintage» in the survey? As the old gondola has been dismantled by the present owner, does it make sense to have a cablecar which will look old?
«Vintage» does not mean the new gondola must be old! The WG believes the positionning should allow a good level of differentiation. The new gondola will be modern from a technical standpoint and will meet the strictest Swiss norms, but one of the keyword of the project will be «authenticity». The project slogan is based on slow motion, authentic design, local products, slow food, eco-friendliness etc.
Why has the old cablecar been dismanteled?
The Swiss Federal Office for Transportation has obliged the present owner to remove the cable, for security reasons. The owner took the initiative to pull the pylones down as well. This was done by a specialized company. The present concession having come to an end, the fact that the installation is no longer visible has no impact on the chances of receiving a new concession.
We have been told that the Isenau «buvette» will not be open this season and that the Standard slope will not be prepared as last year. Is it true?
According to the Swiss law, the buvette could only open if  toilets and running water are avaialable in the premises. Unfortunately, this is not possible for this year. The Standard slope was maintained by the Commune and the Isenau Foundation last year. But in the meantime, the question of responsability in case of an accident has arisent and must be addressed before the reopening of the slope. Parties are presently discussing the matter.
Why not a hotel at Isenau?
The location would indeed be ideal for a hotel! However, the «rural planning» (plan partiel d’affectation) for the entire Isenau area (and around), which was negotiated with the cantonal and federal authorities does not allow the setting up of a hotel activity.
Why not a chairlift instead of a gondola? It would be cheaper
As Isenau360 will target families with children and ski-beginners, the option of a chairlift is far from ideal. Also, the cost of a chairlift of more than 2’500 m is not far from the cost of a simple gondola, but much less comfortable.
Why can’t we have a funicular as a means of transport ?
Because it would have to be underground for the first part of the track, which would be extremely expensive. In addition, it would be much noisier and spoil the view.
Why not set up a project as first planned going from Les Isles and thus forming a hub with the Meilleret ?
This project which does in fact offer a series of advantages was presented by the owners of the installations and the authorities. Numerous oppositions were received and no favourable solution has yet been found. The WG is keen to re-open the Isenau domain as soon as possible and this has excluded this proposal up till now. However, a prolongation may still be possible…
Why isn’t there a project which would leave from the Col du Pillon ?
Such a project would definitely have certain major advantages because it would link up with the Glacier and increase the number of ski runs on offer. However, it would mean going through national protected nature zones (marshland, Lac Retaud) and would result in a great number of oppositions.
Why not develop the ski runs on the axis Col du Voret / Palette / Lac d’Arnon ?
It is true that the possibilities for skiing in this area are magnificent. A few years ago, such options were analysed by the authorities and promoters. Any extension of the domain was categorically refused by the federal and cantonal authorities.
Why not link up Les Diablerets and Gstaad with a railway via le Pillon and then have a telecabin between Le Pillon and Isenau ?
Extending the train to the Col du PIllon has been discussed for many years. This is a federal / cantonal project and unfortunately extremely expensive.
Why couldn’t the old Vioz chairlift after a few alterations be used as a cheap alternative ?
A chairlift is not suitable for children in a domain which is specially adapted for families and should make children fully autonomous. In addition, the possibility of a ”second-hand” offer is interesting but hardly any such offers exist since the legal and administrative rules and regulations involved do not allow such possibilities.
Why couldn’t an intermediary station be built on the Route royale to lighten the traffic from the village ? The inhabitants of the region above the village would thus be able to reach Isenau directly from their homes and ski down the run with less snow.
This is a very pertinent question, not only for skiing but also from an ecological point of view. Such a cost has been examined and would represent a surplus of minimum CHF 3.5 million. For the moment, such an amount cannot be financed
By choice we built our home in Les Diablerets and not in any other village. Isenau was part of the reasons for this choice. We now feel that we have been let down, and our houses have dropped in value. The real estate tax should be reduced ! The upcoming Christmas holidays would be the right time to hold a meeting for a debate. The inhabitants and donors deserve it.
Your comments are fully comprehensible and the local authorities are taking them into account. They are collaborating intensely to attain the WG’s objectives focusing on the reconstruction of Isenau. The WG intends to give everybody an occasion to express their feelings. The survey is the first step; a more complete presentation of the work accomplished is planned for the February school holidays.
Since the Alpes vaudoises 2020 Decree did not come about, and the financing cannot be realised, does this mean purely and simply the end of the project ?
It is true that the financing is one of the keys to the success of the project and in particular one of the unavoidable conditions to obtaining a concession.
 
The various discussions that the Isenau360 Working Group has had with the various economic partners have shown that alternative financial possibilities do exist. Now is the time to develop the project and its profitability so that we can show that the financing is possible. An important point is that, at the moment, Isenau is still on the list of projects which are eligible for the Canton’s financial support as long as it fulfils the criteria of eligibility fixed by the government as regards financial, economic, territorial and environmental feasibility. The final decision of the relative authority responsible remains reserved.

Isenau Beauty

Isenau is a privileged place that deserves to be saved and respected, (re-)discover this jewel through the objectives of our photographer friends.

Let’s get in touch!

Should you have any question, suggestion or wish to contribute to the Isenau360 Working Group’s activities, please contact us!

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