A Curated Guide to St Gallen, Switzerland, with Eco-Friendly Concept Store Stadtlandkind

A Curated Guide to St Gallen, Switzerland, with Eco-Friendly Concept Store Stadtlandkind

Discover the historical wonders of St Gallen’s Abbey district, before taking a dip at the “Three Ponds” and going on a cosy bar crawl through the dynamic city with Stadtlandkind family concept store co-founder Roberta Zingg.

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between Lake Constance and Appenzellerland, Switzerland’s
St Gallen blends cutting-edge innovation with
history and nature. Just an hour from Zürich airport, with greenery
on its doorstep, this dynamic destination is brimming with cosy
cafés, cool cultural centres and a cathedral district so beautiful
that it has been given the Unesco World Heritage stamp.

Known as a hub for start-up culture, the university city
champions new ideas and hosts events that give changemakers a
global platform, including START Summit – Europe’s leading
student-run conference for entrepreneurship and technology.

Eco-conscious family concept store Stadtlandkind is one of St
Gallen’s true start-up success stories. Co-founder Roberta Zingg,
who launched the digital shop with her husband Tobias, explains why
the city was a natural base for their business and gives us insider
access to her hotspots…

Uncover St Gallen’s highlights with Roberta Zingg

How would you describe the Stadtlandkind lifestyle?

Our Swiss online shop is for families and people who love a
carefully curated selection of high-quality, fairly produced and
sustainable products, including clothes, toys, gifts, home and
design pieces.

Tell us more about the sustainable ethos…

At Stadtlandkind,
we place particular emphasis on sustainability when selecting our
suppliers and partners. In our concept store, you will find both
small local brands with high sustainability standards and big
brands that pay attention to sustainable production and fair
employment conditions.

Why did you choose to base your brand in St Gallen?

Although we love to travel and discover the diversity of the
world, St Gallen is our home port. It was clear to both Tobias and
I that we would start our family and business here, surrounded by
family and friends.

What do you love most about the city?

It has an urban flair, but also the typical charm of a small
town. The short distances, the neighbourhoods and the proximity to
the surrounding countryside form the basis for a very high quality
of life. The people are authentic and creative. We also like the

Is it a place that embraces new ideas and small businesses?
What fuels the start-up culture?

It absolutely is! Young, dynamic movements are bringing life
back to the suburbs and centres, allowing more urban encounters and
making city living more attractive again.

Family-friendly working and living areas are being created that
feed into and inform each other, and offer unfamiliar new
opportunities. We recently moved our office to such an area – the
Lattich, at the old freight station. The start-up scene here is
well connected and people support each other.

A Pocket Guide to St Gallen, Switzerland

Where should we get our culture fix?

Fashion enthusiasts will want to start with the Textilmuseum, where they’ll
learn all about Swiss textile history. Don’t miss the Kunst Halle
– one of the most important institutions for emerging art in
Switzerland. As a place for experimentation and the production of
contemporary art, it contributes to the international buzz of the
Swiss art scene, placing an emphasis on questions about the current
work of the younger generation of artists and socially relevant
topics. Right next to it is the Museum im Lagerhaus,
showcasing Swiss naive art and art brut, which I also highly

Is there somewhere you venture to find nature?

The Drei Weieren
(Three Ponds) is our favourite recreational
area in St Gallen. It is in the St Georgen quarter, south of the
old town. The fantastic landscape lends itself to walking, jogging,
yoga, meditation, cycling and, in summer, swimming. A
hot-off-the-press tip is the newly opened sauna, which offers
probably the most spectacular view of the ponds.

Roter Platz, by artist Pipilotti Rist and architect Carlos
Martinez, looks very striking. Do people congregate here?

During the day, children use the unusual urban landscape for
play, while employees of the surrounding stores and offices use the
open outdoor living room for lunch or after-work drinks.

Is the Abbey district a destination you would recommend to
design and architecture lovers?

The Abbey district of St Gallen is an absolute must-see. It is
not without reason that the baroque cathedral and world-famous
Abbey Library are Unesco World Heritage sites. The baroque hall of
the Abbey
surprises visitors with its rich rococo outfitting: the
stock of books housed in the library – still a working library –
stands at around 170,000. The impressive collection of original
early medieval manuscripts makes this institution world-famous.
More than 400 volumes are more than 1,000 years old.

Are there any creative workshops or classes that you would

Again, head to the Kunst
, which offers a programme of interesting workshops for
adults and children.

Which cafés and restaurants should we make a beeline for?

For one of the best burgers you’ve ever had, try Stickerei, whose are homemade from
locally farmed beef, with vegetarian and vegan options on the menu,
too. Speaking of fresh and yummy fusion cuisine, be sure to visit
restaurant Wilde Möhre at the
Güterbahnhof, in the Lattich area. It has a super-fresh and
colourful kitchen, speciality coffees, a great selection of drinks
and a fantastic rooftop terrace, with occasional concerts.

And for a drink?

There are dozens of cosy bars: Blumenmarkt, Baracca, Südbar and Splügen, to name just
a few. If you are into concerts, go and check out the line-up of
events at Palace.

Is there a hotel you would suggest checking into?

In the middle of the monastery quarter, near the train station,
the Hotel Dom is quiet and
central at the same time. It makes the ideal starting point from
which to explore St Gallen and the surrounding area. It also offers
training or employment to about 55 people with a disability.

How do we get around? Do locals tend to use the

The Mühleggbahn is a funicular railway that connects the old
town of St Gallen with the Drei Weihern recreation area and the St
Georgen district on the southern hill of St Gallen. So, yes, if you
want to visit this part of St Gallen, I highly recommend the
Mühleggbahn. Otherwise, you can reach everything by foot, or take
the bus.

What would be a dream itinerary for a weekend in St

Start in the St Gallen Abbey district and visit the baroque
cathedral and, of course, the Abbey Library. After a fortifying
coffee and croissant in restaurant Drahtseilbähnli, hop on the
Müleggbahn to Drei Weihern. Depending on the time of year, you can
spend the afternoon swimming or walking around the pond – just
don’t forget to enjoy a cinnamon cake at the Zimthüsli. For the
more active, there is also a hike to restaurant Waldegg, which is home to a
petting zoo, a gastronomic experience with a cheese dairy and
bakery and outstanding panoramic views. For an aperitif, hike or
take the train back to the city and enjoy a drink in Splügen,
before grabbing a burger at Stickerei.

How would you sum up the destination in a sentence?

St Gallen is the bratwurst-loving cultural city with
down-to-earth, good-natured people.

The Lowdown

To discover more about St Gallen, visit

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