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Giusep Fry checks for the sale of the Uetliberg Hotels

In the hall of the restaurant Uto Kulm is located on a Friday morning in October, a new host of the excursionists. The man is 25 years old, but he's a professional: here is a table of a Smile, words of encouragement and assign it to a waiter, then continued. Zack, zack, zack!

The young restaurateur in Jacket, turtleneck sweater and Skinny Jeans is called on Linkedin "Deputy Director" of the Uto Kulm. On Instagram it's called "Fryjunior". His full Name: Fabian Fry, son of the long-term Uto-Kulm-Patron Giusep Fry . He learned the profession in Park Hyatt Zurich and, until recently, worked in a Dubai branch of the same chain.

Fry Senior, celebrated this spring, his 60. Birthday. The entrance of the son into the business: On the Uetliberg changes underway that go far beyond the presence in the Restaurant. Giusep Fry is currently reviewing a sale of its Hotel Uto Kulm AG, the restaurant, the grounds and the observation tower on the top of Zurich's local mountain, include. Say that three independent sources.

Uto-Kulm-Hotelier Giusep Fry. Photo: Urs Jaudas

Therefore, initial exploration started already years ago. In the summer of 2018 under Fry with realty specialists about scenarios held for sale. And now, from the summer of 2019, intense the negotiations were.

On request is Fry, which occurs before the media, if he wants something to announce, evasively. His speaker is: "Like any Patron who approaches the retirement age, also Giusep Fry's thoughts about the future of his company. He checks various offers, lies in the nature of things." With his son, a succession solution lies on the Hand, and at some point, Fry will pass the baton, the speaker says: "This may be the first in 25 years."

Potential buyers are not known. Different scenarios are conceivable. First: Fry from pushing the Uto Kulm quite. Secondly: Fry sold, but the operational side of the business. Thirdly, Fry retains ownership passes but the operational business of an external company. In addition, the question of which role is to accept his son for that.

city is interested in

The negotiations have made in well-informed circles, the round. Also in the Zurich municipal administration, one has to learn to TA information of the intentions. A sale would have a strong political Dimension: The Uetliberg is part of a year and tens of thousands of visitors to the popular tourist attractions of Switzerland. A direct control of the city over the 25 000-square-meter plot of land has not. It belongs to the municipality of Stallikon. The spatial planning is divided, a large part of it in an agricultural zone, so with talking with approval from the Canton.

However, a small piece of Land – a little more than 300Quadratmeter – the city of Zurich belongs to. She had left the stain of 2002, Fry in the building to build a glass pavilion. To 2069, the city would have this right of first refusal, if Fry's would sell his country. At the time, Fry built the plant according to the NZZ for 11Millionen francs, and made it what it is today: a event venue with over 100Angestellten.

"The city of Zurich would be interested in a purchase of hotel facility and of the property."Daniel Leupi, the city Council (Green)

fry's will collided with the law. Over the years, the conflicts piled up around an Outdoor cinema, built-in terraces or helicopter flights. Courts objected to the Fry several times. The cinema, he could not perform as he wanted, the Kiosk, he broke off. Helicopter landings are not possible today.

The city of Zurich would have been able to buy the property on the mountain itself. Twice they had the Chance. For the first Time in 1976, but the voting citizens and voters, citizens rejected a purchase. For the second Time in 1999, as the Swiss Bank company wanted to divest itself of the Hotel in the Wake of the UBS-merger. The city has not exercised its right of pre-emption, but, as she stood there financially poor. Instead, Giusep Fry bought the operation, whose leadership he assumed in 1983 as a 24-year-old Young restaurateur.

Today, the city of Zurich indicates quite a level of interest in the Uto Kulm. The competent city Council member Daniel Leupi (Grüne) does not want to speak to "any negotiations", but says: "If a sale would be up for debate, the city of Zurich today, interest in purchasing the hotel and the property."

A million-dollar business

The potential sale price, there is only circumstantial evidence. Fry spoke some years ago of an annual turnover of 16 to 19 million Swiss francs. 2014 SRF Journalist asked him for what sum he would give to the Uto Kulm once. Fry replied, "For a sum in the high two-digit million range." As Fry in 2008 moved to the Hotel in the newly founded Hotel Uto Kulm AG, the balance sheet total of the company's approximately 22 million Swiss francs. The value of the hotel building was estimated in 2006 to over 31 million francs, that of the tower in 2003 to 6 million Swiss francs. But much has changed since then, and industry experts agree: The plot is on the top of the Uetliberg is a special case, a lover object, for the buyer could be ready to pay more than the market price.

among the actors around the Uetliberg, the sale rumors for the unrest. First and foremost, there is the fear that a future owner might disturb the fragile balance that has formed in recent years between the many interest groups stands out. Chris Linder, President of the municipality of Uitikon, says: "We have a strong interest in ensuring that the Uetliberg is a popular destination and the Restaurant remains the same with an attractive offer."

Fabian Fry could one day take over his father's company. Photo: Sharon Haridas (ITP Media Group)

Today, the offer is at least as attractive that the Uto Kulm begins on a Friday lunchtime to fill in October, despite the drizzle. Families came, retired couples, a group of women from the Eastern part of Switzerland. Two dozen students and lecturers of the ZHDK trigger at the entrance to a short hustle and bustle – where to sit down? We have reserved? Buffet or à la carte?

the young patron Fabian Fry is immediately on the spot.

Created: 03.11.2019, 21:35 PM

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