5th December 2018
The vast array of different nationalities of campers who come to enjoy the Camp Suisse experience never ceases to amaze us: over the past few years we have noticed a growing trend, indicating our campers are coming from an increasingly diverse range of countries; spanning six continents.
A typical arrivals day for our Summer Camp can see us welcome children from around forty countries. This involves a lot of planning; our administration team has to ensure that every camper’s travel details are in check, including their arrival time and flight number; then create a travel plan to give to our Airport Welcome Team, who go to Geneva Airport to greet each camper as they pass into the arrivals hall. Flights arrive from all corners of the globe: from Sydney to Los Angeles; from Frankfurt to Lima, our Airport Welcome Team always works hard to ensure the entire process runs like a well-oiled machine.
Other campers arrive directly to Camp with their parents by car; some live relatively locally in Switzerland or neighbouring France and Italy; other families are visiting Switzerland from further afield and choose Camp Suisse to give their child the perfect opportunity to partake in our amazing activity programme or to learn a language.
Whichever way campers arrive, they instantly start getting to know one another; something which is really special to see. For many, the linguistic immersion we offer starts from the moment they arrive; particularly if they have to use a “common language” with their fellow campers to communicate and make friends. While this is most often English, it’s not uncommon for campers to communicate in French, Spanish or German, depending on where they are from and what languages they can already speak. This leads to the formation of cross-cultural friendships, which many campers quite rightly feel is one of the best things about the overall Camp Suisse experience. Dinner times at Camp are one of the best places to see these newly formed cross-cultural friendships in action: having a table with a boy from Peru sat next to and chatting to his fellow campers from Australia, Poland, China and Portugal is a prime example – there can’t be many other places in Switzerland where cross-cultural friendships are quite as clear!
To find out more about summer 2019, and to reserve your place, visit our Summer Camp pages.
Check out the map below to see where our campers came from in Summer 2018:
With Summer 2018 all but a distant, dreamy memory, here at Camp Suisse we’re turning our attention towards the winter season; in particular our awesome Winter Ski Camp; we’re also already looking ahead to Summer 2019. In this blog we reflect upon the three key ingredients which we reckon make Camp Suisse so special year-round.
We view our staff as being the key ingredient to the success of Camp Suisse; this is particularly important at this time of year as our recruitment process for next summer is in full swing. Every year we receive dozens of applications from well qualified candidates, which allows us to select the very best individuals to join our team. When recruiting we are really looking for people who we can envisage making a positive contribution to the unique family feel which we believe sets Camp Suisse apart from other Summer Camp experiences.
The second key ingredient in making Camp Suisse so special is our carefully planned Summer Programme. Recent studies have indicated that Generation Z – that is, children born after 1997 – are becoming increasingly addicted to their mobile devices and social media. Camp Suisse provides the increasingly rare opportunity for your youngster to temporarily forget the imagined importance of Instagram likes, Snapchat streaks and emojis and puts them into an environment conducive to socialising with other kids and forming cross cultural friendships; all whilst taking part in amazing activities such as mountain biking, banana boating and eating marshmallows around the campfire on our camping excursion!
The final ingredient is our outstanding location; our summer site in Torgon is perfectly located for a range of exciting mountain activities including mountain biking, Ghyll scrambling and rock climbing. Moreover, it’s only a short bus ride down the mountain to Lake Geneva where our campers enjoy swimming and banana boating – we can’t think of anywhere we’d rather be over the summer.
In the winter our Camps in neighbouring Champery and Crosets provide unrivalled access to the Portes du Soleil ski domaine, making the ideal venues for our Ski Camps in February half term. Our campers have the perfect opportunity to improve their ski skills under the expert guidance of l’École Suisse de Ski, whilst benefiting from our excellent après ski programme which includes a mountain survival course, ice skating, swimming and more!
There’s still time to book onto our Winter Ski Camp, although places are limited so we recommend surfing to our ski website now to check out our unbeatable all-inclusive ski package.
We’ve already started taking bookings for next summer; check out our dates and prices.
If you have any questions, drop us an email at email@example.com
We hope to welcome you to the Swiss Alps either this winter or next summer.
16th November 2018
With the lush green mountains of summer rapidly being blanketed in fluffy white snow, which transforms Switzerland into a winter wonderland, we’re swapping our mountain bikes for skis; our flip-flops for snow boots; and our summer t-shirts for a warm, snuggly winter jacket. We love winter just as much as summer, not least because it allows us to hit the slopes with our Winter Ski and Snowboard Camp.
Besides welcoming numerous schools and groups to the Swiss Alps, our favourite week of winter has to be February half term, when we host our Ski and Snowboard Camp at our base in Champéry, situated in the Portes du Soleil skiing area. Boasting over 650km of pistes, 201 lifts, and ten terrain parks, this ski area is the perfect challenge for skiers and snowboarders of all ages and abilities.
Aside from the stunning scenery (check out our photos from last year if you don’t believe us!), we’ve been spending the autumn preparing an action-packed programme so that our campers get the most of their week in the Swiss Alps. For starters, we’ve teamed up with École Suisse de Ski et de Snowboard to offer lessons, which cater to all abilities, five hours per day, Monday through to Friday. While our beginner lessons focus on the fundamentals of skiing and snowboarding, those requiring more advanced lessons can work on fine-tuning different disciplines such as racing, bumps and off-piste. Our ski lessons aim to make learning to ski or snowboard as fun as possible, ensuring everyone has fun on the snow. What’s more, we’ve invested in some great ski equipment and helmets to make sure our campers stay safe when out on the mountain.
However, the fun doesn’t stop when our campers get off the piste: as well as enjoying three delicious meals per day, our campers then have the chance to après-ciate (pun intended) our action-packed après ski programme of events. Taking full advantage of Champéry’s location, we organise a mountain safety course, ice skating, swimming, a torch lit walk, sledging, disco, movie night and more.
Check out our video for a virtual look at what our ski camp has to offer:
So if your youngster still hasn’t made up their mind what to ask Father Christmas for this year, or if you’re looking for the perfect adventure keep them entertained during the otherwise cold and miserable February half-term break, why not find out more about our awesome Ski and Snowboard Camp…
Sunday 17th February – Friday 22nd February 2019
Price: 1600 CHF per camper
Places are limited, so we strongly recommend reserving your youngster’s place before Father Christmas visits!
To reserve your place, head over to our Ski & Snowboard site.
17th September 2018
Camp Suisse is a truly international environment and every year we welcome a number of Spanish speakers. Over the last few years, Camp Suisse’s Spanish language course has been growing steadily in popularity; on a global level, Spanish is becoming more widely spoken. So we thought it would be a good idea to have a look at the top five reasons to hablar español:
1. Increasing numbers of Spanish speakers
In the US, Spanish is rising ahead of any other non-English language at a rapid pace, with a steady flow of new immigrants from Latin America and growth in the already large Hispanic population.
According to a Pew Research Center report, an estimated 37.6 million people in the US spoke Spanish as their first language in 2013 and analysts predict the Latino population will reach approximately 128.8 million by 2060.
Proportionally, Hispanics will rise from around 16 per cent of the US population in 2010 to 30 per cent by 2050.
2. Learning Spanish will help your career
With booming economies in Latin America, employers are desperate for people who speak Spanish. There is a huge demand in the west, particularly North America, for Spanish-speakers in nursing, construction management and media, among many other positions.
Big corporations are realising the importance of reaching a market that represented $1.5 trillion (£1.13 trillion) in purchasing power in the US in 2015. Meanwhile, Latin America received a record $174 billion of foreign investment in 2012 and companies everywhere are expanding there, such as PepsiCo, which announced a $5 billion investment in Mexico in January 2014.
3. It will unlock a world of travel destinations
There are approximately 329 million native Spanish speakers in the world and they populate some of the coolest destinations in the world.
Even if you do go to popular destinations in Mexico and the Caribbean, speaking the local language will help you get off the beaten path and see some real culture. And then of course you can book a trip to Spain and see the wonders of Barcelona, Madrid, Andalucia and more.
4. You can enjoy amazing books and movies
Around 100 successful authors from 54 countries voted El ingenioso hidalgo Don Quixote de la Mancha by novelist Miguel de Cervantes as the best book of all time and while the 17th-century book is widely available in other languages, it, like any book, is best in its original language.
Other Spanish-language authors you’ll want to read are Chilean poet Pablo Neruda – many of whose works have not been translated – Gabriel García Márquez, Roberto Bolaño, Mario Vargas Llosa and many more.
And then there are the movies. Star directors Pedro Almodóvar, Alfonso Cuaron and Guilermo Del Toro – who all have movies in their native language – should be enough to convince you of the richness of Spanish-language cinema.
5. Spanish is easy to learn
Written Spanish is almost completely phonetic – look at any Spanish word and you can tell how it is pronounced.
While mastering the grammar of Spanish can be a challenge, basic grammar is straightforward enough and many vocabulary words are similar to English. Since the number of Spanish speakers in the US continues to rise, chances are it will become even easier to learn and practice this language.
To find out more about our Spanish language tuition, head over to our languages pages.
6th September 2018
Located in the heart of Francophone Switzerland, here at Camp Suisse we strongly believe the ability to be conversant in the French language is a highly desirable ‘soft skill’; that is one which helps with inter-cultural communication in both professional and social environments. But we didn’t want to stop there: here are ten great reasons to learn French:
1. It’s a World Language
More than 220 million people speak French on the five continents. The OIF, an international organisation of French-speaking countries, comprises 77 member States and governments.
French is also the only language, alongside English, that is taught in every country in the world. France operates the biggest international network of cultural institutes, which run French-language courses for close on a million learners.
2. It’s a Language for the Job Market
The ability to speak French and English is an advantage on the international job market. A knowledge of French opens the doors of French companies in France and other French-speaking parts of the world (Canada, Switzerland, Belgium, and the continent of Africa). As the world’s fifth biggest economy and third-ranking destination for foreign investment, France is a key economic partner.
3. The language of culture
French is the international language of cooking, fashion, theatre, the visual arts, dance and architecture. A knowledge of French offers access to great works of literature in the original French, as well as films and songs. French is the language of Victor Hugo, Molière, Léopold Sendar Senghor, Edith Piaf, Jean-Paul Sartre, Alain Delon and Zinedine Zidane.
4. A language for travel
France is the world’s top tourist destination and attracts more than 79,5 million visitors a year. The ability to speak even a little French makes it so much more enjoyable to visit Paris and all the regions of France (from the mild climes of the Cote d’Azur to the snow-capped peaks of the Alps via the rugged coastline of Brittany) and offers insights into French culture, mentality and way of life. French also comes in handy when travelling to Africa, Switzerland, Canada, Monaco, the Seychelles and other places.
5. A language for higher education
Speaking French opens up study opportunities at renowned French universities and business schools, ranked among the top higher education institutions in Europe and the world. Students with a good level of French are eligible for French government grants to enroll in postgraduate courses in France in the discipline of their choice and qualify for internationally recognised degrees.
6. The other language of international relations
French is both a working language and an official language of the United Nations, the European Union, UNESCO, NATO, the International Olympic Committee, the International Red Cross and international courts. French is the language of the three cities where the EU institutions are headquartered: Strasbourg, Brussels and Luxembourg.
7. A language that opens up the world
After English and German, French is the third most widely used language on the Internet, ahead of Spanish. An ability to understand French offers an alternative view of the world through communication with French speakers from all over the world and news from the leading French-language international media (TV5, France 24 and Radio France Internationale).
8. A language that is fun to learn
French is an easy language to learn. There are many methods on the market that make learning French enjoyable for children and adults alike. It does not take long to reach a level where you can communicate in French.
9. A language for learning other languages
French is a good base for learning other languages, especially Romance languages (Spanish, Italian, Portuguese and Romanian) as well as English, since fifty per cent of current English vocabulary is derived from French.
10. The language of love and reason
First and foremost, learning French is the pleasure of learning a beautiful, rich, melodious language, often called the language of love. French is also an analytical language that structures thought and develops critical thinking, which is a valuable skill for discussions and negotiations.
12th July 2018
On Tuesday, the blue group kicked off the day with their language classes. They dedicated part of the lesson to prepare for the renowned Camp Suisse Talent Show, which took place on Wednesday night, where each language class presented their own act. Everyone was very excited to put into practice what they had learnt in class over the last two weeks! After a hearty lunch, it was time to head off for our walk towards the French/ Swiss border, situated a little further up the mountain. All the campers were very proud of their efforts; the walk was a challenge for all, and the fruits of their efforts were appreciated in the form of the spectacular view when they reached the summit. In the evening, our group had the chance to enjoy a well deserved and delicious meal prepared at camp. Finally, before bed, the everyone enjoyed munching marshmallows and chanting their favourite songs around the camp fire!
Evelyne, Group Leader & Teacher of French
(Translated by Phil, Administrator) View the original in French
23rd June 2018
Situated at the eastern end of Lake Geneva in Bouveret, Aquaparc has been coined as a tropical oasis, which welcomes over 300,000 visitors each year. The parc boasts over a kilometre of water slides, which plunge into pools heated to 32C.
Adding to the excitement are three tropical-themed areas, along with several ‘water universes’. The first is dedicated to children, and is home to a pirate ship, wave pool and the ‘Fantastico’ water slide. The family universe is home to three water slides. If you’re feeling brave, the ‘Sensations’ universe caters to the thrill seekers. The outdoor universe commands stunning views over the surrounding mountains and Lake Geneva. Finally, for the ultimate way to de-stress is with a visit to the ‘Wellness’ universe, which features a tropical bath, jacuzzies, saunas, fitness facilities and massages.
With so much on offer, it’s perhaps little surprise that so campers enjoy unwinding in the Aquaparc; especially after having experienced our more physical excursions such as the visit to Glacier 3000. To find out more about the Aquaparc, visit the Aquaparc website
15th June 2018
Founded in 1993, the Museum was the brainchild of then-president of the IOC Juan Antonio Samaranch. The project was overseen by Mexican architect Pedro Ramírez Vázquez, an International Olympic Committee member, and Jean-Pierre Cahen. The museum was named the European Museum of the Year in 1995.
The Museum’s permanent exhibition is organized into three major themes on three separate floors: Olympic World, Olympic Games, and Olympic Spirit. A visit begins on the third floor, where the Olympic World part of the exhibition informs visitors of the history of the ancient Olympic Games and the rebirth of the modern Games in the 19th century. Highlights include a display of Olympic torches, as well as videos documenting major moments in the history of opening ceremonies history.
The second floor focuses on Olympic Games. Sporting equipment for a variety of sports are on display, and visitors are introduced to the Youth Olympic Games and the Paralympic Games. More than 1,000 video clips of Olympic Games events and athletes can be searched and viewed at individual viewing stations.
The final part of the permanent exhibit covers the Olympic Spirit, where visitors are made to feel part of an Olympic Village and can test their balance, agility, and mental skills with interactive exercises. Olympic medals are also on display.
11th June 2018
Summer 2018 is set to yet again play host to campers from an incredible range of backgrounds and cultures at Camp Suisse. The company, which specialises in summer alpine adventure and language programmes for children aged from 5 to 17, is this summer preparing to welcome 39 different nationalities from across the globe. This year, Camp Suisse staff are preparing say ‘Hello’, ‘Bonjour’, ‘Hola’ and ‘Hallo’ to campers arriving at Geneva Airport from countries as far away as Brazil, Taiwan, the Bahamas and China.
Ever since its founding in 2005, Camp Suisse has championed the idea of creating a truly international environment for its campers; many of whom return year after year. In recent years, the Camp’s offering has diversified to include a French immersion programme and day camps, which have proved popular among those living in Switzerland, as well as families holidaying in the area seeking to entertain their children for the day. The main international camp operates four sessions from the end of June until mid-August; three of which are two week programmes, and the last is a one week programme. Custom date options are also available.
The Camp also opens its doors to school groups, who benefit from the diverse array of language programmes, outdoor adventure activities and opportunities to visit local places of interest throughout spring and the early summer months.
There is still limited availability this summer; to give your child a truly international experience, we invite you to browse our website or send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Our excursion to Cailler Chocolate Factory is arguably ever camper’s (and staff’s!) favourite excursion! The factory provides every visitor with a complete brand immersion experience; guiding them through the history of chocolate, which stems from the Aztec cocoa ceremonies, right through to the company’s current product range.
Visitors also experience full immersion of the chocolate making process, in the shape of an audio-visual tour, which shows how cocoa bean becomes chocolate bar. The past also comes to life through a selection of photographs that retrace the factory’s history from its humble origins in 1898 right up to the 1960s. This journey through time brings memories to life.
The very best is saved until last: with appetites whetted, visitors can then visit a specially designed shop which sells the entire range of Cailler of Switzerland chocolates.
More information about the factory can be found on their website: https://cailler.ch/en/maison-cailler/la-chocolaterie-suisse/