© Jen Murphy
The bar at Cervo.
Zermatt’s fabulousness comes at a cost. It’s one of the most pricey ski towns I’ve been to. Since I have yet to win the lottery, I didn’t stay in any of Zermatt’s fabulously glitzy new hotels. My friends and I instead rented a great apartment owned by one of Zermatt’s top mountain guides, Gianni Mazzone. We scoped the hotel scene by après-ski eating and drinking at the bars. For those who want to splurge, here are some swank spots to stay.

Hotel Matthiol
Swiss-German film director Marc Forster (Monster’s Ball, Quantum of Solace) is a co-proprietor of this chic new 23-room chalet just up the hill from the main town at the foot of the Matterhorn. His mark on the property: a permanent photo exhibition of his movie productions and a master suite named after him. Interior designer and co-owner Betty Summermatter is responsible for the rest of the cool design touches, like deer-head decorations made of silver, and oversized tubs.

Cervo Five stylish wood-and-stone chalets make up this swank new hotel on the Sunnegga side of the mountain. Seraina Müller runs the excellent restaurant and cooks Provençal-inspired dishes like côte de boeuf. There’s a great après scene: The outdoor, downstairs bar overlooking the slopes is rowdier, while the upstairs deck with its fireplace and blankets is quiet and cozy. Indoors the bar has deer antlers dangling from the ceiling and a huge wall showing off an impressive collection of magnums.

Hotel Firefly A short walk from the Klein Matterhorn ski lift, Firefly’s 15 suites are each themed after one of the elements (water, fire, earth and wind) and decked out with PlayStation 3 and chairs made by the Swiss wood artist Spoon. Many a night we found ourselves hanging at the hotel’s Bar 55, which has billiards, foosball and a great cocktail list.