Swissôtel Hotels & Resorts, which owns hotels in cities worldwide, operates a loyalty scheme for business travellers, weekenders and other frequent guests. As ‘Swiss Club Gold’, the scheme was working well, but the company recognised that the name – indeed the entire brand – was more efficient than engaging, and corporate rather than cordial. Swissôtel wanted something it could own; distinctive and unmistakably Swiss that would create a sense of belonging and emotional engagement for members.
We needed to hold onto heritage and tradition yet refresh and update the entire offering. We retained the basic three-tier membership structure, but renamed them in Romansch, the oldest of Switzerland’s four official languages, and reinvented them as stages in a journey up a mountain – the Matterhorn, to be exact. Thus, the entry-level became Iniza (‘the valley’), the middle tier Elevà (‘higher elevation’) and the top level, Zenit (‘summit’). Our colour palette echoed the progression, moving from green, through grey to a pale silver and white.
Our brand design was based on the intricate art of paper-cutting, which is traditional in Zürich, where Swissôtel began. Working in collaboration with Swiss design studio Kessler + Kessler, and the artist Jork Andre Dieter, we created separate graphic devices for male and female audiences. We also created a circle icon for each tier, which can be arranged concentrically. These individual items can be used interchangeably depending on the communication piece, and now appear across all collateral from key rings to membership cards, and Swissôtel properties.
Our brand expression is a full sensory experience – right down to the smell of the Swiss pine we specified for the top-tier membership gift box. From initial brand naming and designing the various brand elements to creating the website and brand guidelines, this global brand revamp was a wonderful journey, and one that played to the strengths of the whole Warren Creative team.