Long before the advent of tourism, the name Switzerland was associated with the idea of scenic beauty.
Within Switzerland, the gateway to the south, Ticino, is captivating and fascinating. The canton of Ticino is not only the sunniest region in Switzerland, the Mediterranean climate of the southern side of the Alps provides also lush gardens, wonderful wines and a varied cuisine. So, in 1962, the Irish-Scottish hotelier Ena Jenny decided to build a house in Ticino, offering five rooms for Bed & Breakfast. She found the ideal place in the small, picturesque village of Tegna above Locarno, in Terre di Pedemonte. The property was situated on a hill that was used to raise vines and this gave the house its Italian name "Barbatè". After a successful start and lively demand, Ena Jenny expanded her offer to a total of twelve rooms. In 1969, on the recommendation of her friend Elke Gilbert, the well-known writer and philosopher Hannah Arenth arrived. She was very enthusiastic about the place and thereafter regularly visited Ticino in summer, and in Tegna she stayed at Casa Barbatè. She raved about the house directly and wrote:
This was a beautiful statement from a prominent guest and attracted other friends and acquaintances. Over the years, several owners changed Casa Barbatè. In 2005, when the house was once again up for sale, Italian-born Paolo Zanga and his German wife Alexandra saw an opportunity to fulfil their dream. They bought the Garni Barbatè from the Favrè-Trinca family from Ticino and then set about improving and renovating the house. Both had already worked for many years in the Ticino hotel and restaurant industry and were able to contribute with their ideas and knowledge of the industry. The demand was great, so they decided to expand the offer in 2010 with the construction of a storey and a flat.
In 2015, a second car park was built underneath the house. The warm and loving hospitality and well-trained staff earned the house an excellent rating from guests and the award as one of the best Garni Hotels in Switzerland. With the takeover of the Bistrot & Bed "Locanda Boato" in the centre of Tegna, eight additional double rooms were added and now fifty beds are offered. Hotel guests now also have the option of dining in the hotel's own restaurant.
Paolo Zanga and his wife Alexandra look forward to a prosperous future with great confidence and optimism, giving their guests a lot of joy, a time without hustle and bustle and a wonderful feeling of being alive.