Josef and Amalie Giger-Nigg were 61 and 59 years old when the Waldhaus was opened on June 15, 1908, after a two-and-a-half-year construction period. What drove them to take on such a risk and make such an effort at an age when others retire?
Josef Giger, born in tiny Murg on Lake Walen, had spent his life managing grand hotels. At age 24, he was already running the Hof Ragaz, one of the two large resort hotels in Bad Ragaz. There he married Amalie Nigg, daughter of a contractor and mayor of nearby Pfäfers. In 1890, they moved to the large and luxurious Hotel du Lac in St. Moritz Bad. It was only open in summer. They ran other grand hotels on the Italian Riviera and in St. Petersburg in winter.
After all those years of managing other people’s hotels, they were able to realize their dream of a perfect hotel. The Waldhaus, built by St. Moritz architect Karl Koller, was entirely in line with their ideas and turned out to be a masterpiece.