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About Maloja
General Information
Maloja, once the Alp of Stampa, has developed into a veritable holiday resort. Where once the cows have grazed, there are now the tourists seeking the quiet. Maloja is a village on the Maloja Pass between the Upper Engadin and the Bergell. Politically Maloja is part of the municipality Bregaglia, but geographically it belongs to the Upper Engadin. The village has about 300 inhabitants. The area around Maloja is geographically, geologically and botanically one of the most interesting areas in the Alps. Surrounded by high mountains a chain of lakes are running from north east through the Engadin plateau to the pass village Maloja at 1815 m altitude. In Maloja the river “Inn” has its spring and gives his name to the Engadin.
History
Originally, Maloja was not the name of a place, but of the pass. Unlike the neighbouring mountain transits, which were already used by the Romans, it only took on significance when the present-day road was built in the 19th century. Thanks to the pioneering spirit of the Belgian count, Camille de Renesse, the village of Maloja established itself along the new pass Road towards the end of the 19th century. De Renesse was so enchanted by the magnificent Alpine scenery that he decided to build a holiday resort for the aristocracy. Consequently, he built the gigantic Hotel Maloja Palace, the Hotel Schweizerhaus, the two churches, Belvedere Castle and various villas. But his plans failed, and today Maloja is a small, family-friendly holiday village. The megalomaniac Belgium count was, in fact, not the first to leave his mark on the area. The village's history actually began in 2,000 BC, when the first hunters roamed the region. Maloja's ornamental stones, ancient stone tombs and old coins bear witness to these times.
Climate
The Upper Engadin enjoys a dry, continental climate and is situated on the south side of the Alps. Therefore the Engadin is famous for a lot of sunny days. Because of the altitude you will always find snow in winter time. In summer the famous and strong Maloja wind begins to blow around midday und creates excellent conditions for water sport and glider pilots.
Location & Arrival
The optimal location, starting point to the Bergell and beginning of the Upper Engadin allows you numbers of various excursions. In half an hour you are on the highest peaks of the Engadin or on the shores of Lake Como. Whether you want to enjoy the seclusion in the beautiful mountains or/and maybe the chic world of St. Moritz, everything is very close.
Maloja is 18km away from St. Moritz, 190km from Zurich and 150km from Milan.
Attractions
Tower Belvedere
Maloja’s landmark. From the roof terrace (only open in summer) you have a great view over Maloja and the Bergell and the mountains of the Engadin area. There are also interesting exhibitions.
Glacial potholes
The effect of the Ice Age by the glaciers in the area of Maloja is particularly impressive. There are cylindrical holes that reach a depth of 10 meters and more and enter the rocks as shafts.
Watershed of three rivers
Not far from the Piz Lunghin a little northwards is a triple watershed. There arises the Julia which sends its water into the Rhine, and finally into the North Sea. The Inn flows through the Engadin in the Danube, which flows into the Black Sea. The Maria flows through the Bregaglia trough the Lake Como and then into the Mediterranean. A curiosity that is unique in Europe.
Highest shipping company in Europe
The ship sails from Maloja to Isola and to Sils (summer only).
Culture
The fascinating play of light and shadow always attracted the artists. Giovanni Segantini has chosen Maloja as his last home and subject to many images of nature. Giovanni Giacometti, the father of Alberto Giacometti, worked also here. Their spirit inspires still nowadays to exhibitions, lectures and concerts.
Giovanni Segantini
The famous painter Segantini lived in Maloja for the last four years of his life. His house and the atelier are opposite oft the Hotel Schweizerhaus. His grave is in Maloja and the cemetery is called Segantini-cemetery. In the Segantini Museum in St. Moritz you can learn something about his life and his pictures. In August 1894 the Segantini family settled in Maloja. In 1897, Giovanni Segantini had built a round wooden structure behind his house which became well known as the Segantini Atelier. This rotunda was in fact a one-tenth scale model for a monumental pavilion planned for the Paris world fair in 1900, intended to house an enormous panoramic painting of the Engadin by Segantini. The smaller pavilion was used by the artist as a library. He hardly ever painted there, as he produced most of his canvases in the open air.
Alberto Giacometti
The famous sculptor was born and raised in Stampa/Bergell. The whole Giacometti-family is famous for their art. The Giacomettis had a summer house in Maloja. In the „Saletta Giacometti” (in the hotel Schweizerhaus opposite of the reception desk) are paintings of Giovanni Giacometti (father of Alberto Giacometti).
Hannes Gruber
Hannes Gruber, artists from Sils-Baselgia lends the Hotel Schweizerhaus through its permanent exhibition in the restaurants, hotel rooms and the corridors up to the 4th floor with a modern zeitgeist.
Sport activities
Winter
All around Maloja we have a lot of trails. Some are easy and some are difficult, so there is something for everyone. Between Maloja and St. Moritz are 78 km and in the whole Engadin 237 km well prepared slopes. Snowboarding and alpine skiing at our house mountain “Aela” and especially the ski tow for children. Snowtubing at the ski tow, sledging, snow shoe hiking, ski touring and curling.
Summer
It is really great to hike in the Engadin area. It is just perfect to start in Maloja, you have the choice of the valley Bregaglia and the Engadine. A must: the little mountain lakes Cavloc and Bitabergh (ca. 1 h).
On the back side of the retaining wall Orlegna there is a free climbing wall and as well you will find a climbing wall next to the Chiesa Bianca in Maloja.
Opportunity for mountain biking, tennis, sailing, kite sailing, wind surfing, pedalios and rowing boats, golfing.
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