Lake views, grand hotels, and jazz in Montreux, Switzerland

Montreux, SwitzerlandI’ve already written about how I was able to explore around Lake Geneva this past summer while dropping off and picking up my son from camp in beautiful Leysin, Switzerland .

One of the places I visited with my son was beautiful, lakeside Montreux.

Montreux is wonderfully picturesque, with its stately grand hotels and idyllic lakeside views of the dramatic Chillon castle and the mountains surrounding the lake.

Montreux, SwitzerlandIt also happens to be the site of the internationally renowned Montreux Jazz Festival, held each year in July.

We happened to catch the tail end of it, and enjoyed a free concert in a lakeside park.

Montreux, Switzerland

Freddie Mercury of Queen

It was a warm day, and although we hadn’t brought our bathing suits, we enjoyed wading in the water.

Montreux is a good walking town, with a long, lakeside walkway and beautiful views from each curve.

There are also statues to its well-known residents. Freddie Mercury, the lead singer of Queen lived here for many year and died here in Montreux. His statue is at a busy section of the lake.

Vladimir Nabakov, Montreux

Longtime resident Vladimir Nabakov

One of my favorite authors, Valdimir Nabakov, also called Montreux home.

As soon as he made his name (and fortune) with Lolita, he happily left my alma mater, Cornell, where he’d taught Russian literature, to spend the rest of his days living and writing in the sumptuous Montreux Palace Hotel along the lakes of Lake Geneva. He died there in 1977.

His statue can be found in a lakeside park. The Palace Hotel is still a luxurious lakeside property.

Montreux is a beautiful place to visit when you’re on Lake Geneva. Enjoy strolling the town for stunning lake views and enjoy the wonderful grand hotels from a  bygone era. If you’re lucky enough to be there during the jazz festival, take in some lakeside concerts, too. Can’t wait to get back.

Montreux, Switzerland


  1. Catherine on September 16, 2014 at 11:27 am

    Nabokov and Freddie Mercury! Two of my favourite artists! I had no idea..

  2. kimberlysullivan on September 17, 2014 at 8:06 am

    Kind of random, isn’t it? Do you think the two of them spent lots of time together in Montreux, hanging out and chatting? : )

  3. […] And then, this past summer found me in beautiful Montreux, Switzerland, where Nabokov and his wife decamped after leaving Ithaca, New York far behind. They lived  in the luxurious, lakeside Montreux Palace Hotel until his death in 1977. I saw the statue dedicated to him on the lake’s edge. See my earlier post . […]

  4. […] of Geneva, the birds’ eye view from the cathedral belltower, visiting Lausanne, the jazz festival at Montreux and visiting Alpine […]

Leave a Comment