ok I know I am months behind in catching this news but I honestly must have missed it somehow until I was reading a bit in a folder that landed in our mailbox and there it was: the CM Maloja palace has been sold.
Apparently it is old news, so is shown here or here or here . But it came to a shock to me although it makes sense. This huge building, once built as a luxury hotel more than a century ago has been for over 4 decades the home of 14 year olds coming here for a fun summer camp. Gosh I think my mom even went there ...No she went to Leysin (which still exists as well). But I went for the first time to Switserland in Maloja when I was 14. And I slept up there in the mountains for the first time in a hut. And I came back there as a camp leader as well. Maloja is a wonderful place and it was special to stay in this hotel with its impressive major staircase, its big hall and especially the stunning nature all around it with the huge lake and the high peaks. The Maloja village in Switserland has hosted for years about 500 kids + a few hundred staff all summer long each week and this village only counts about 800 inhabitants. According to Tom , 1 out of 8 Flemish kids would have spent vacation in Maloja. Gosh talk about the closure of a monument !! It must be such a change to the inhabitants as well not seeing all those 14 year olds with their bagpacks around anymore. Although they probably will commercially benefit from the sale of the building especially since the 'Palace' would be restructured to its old luxury hotel position.
I guess it makes sence for the CM and Intersoc (social security departments specialised in organising kids and youth camps throughout Europe for Flemish children) to sell this huge costly building that apparently needed urgent renovations that would cost billions. It is true that teenagers aren't that interested anymore in mass camps with 500 kids around, although all their activities were in little groups of about 20 kids. The mass remains, the shifts in the 'restaurant' remain. But they'll miss the mass singing gatherings on the major staircase while waiting for their restaurant shift though with the youth leaders of different districts challenging each other up in front. And it is true that the kids are more interested in water and mountain sports which maybe Maloja could not offer as much as Schwarzee and Fiesch etc. But their mountains are so much lower, Maloja was the only location at 1800m high. As soon as you hike a little bit there we were on top of 2000 meters, on top of the world !
Pff I am just getting so nostalgic looking back. Forgive me to ramble away like that, it probably interests nobody except some fellow CM youth leaders that have known the Maloja Palace. Hey district Limburg, do you remember how often we (district Ghent) went into your teamroom and moved all the furniture out and spread it all out over the staircase while hiding for the nightguard....Haha hilarious . I have flashbacks of barbecues out at the lake a little further that did not want to light. And Adelwijn, did you ever go back there and did you wake the kids up again with your bagpipes?? Would the guests that pay loads of money in the future to sleep there know that there were bunk beds with duvets inside before and that on the balconies on front there were kids standing on bare feet before they went to bed, because they claimed to have drunk too much water and they couldn't pee??? Gosh that building holds so many stories.
Oh well let me look at it this way.... since I am not part of the CM organisation anymore I probably would not have had a chance to stay in the Maloja Palace anymore. If it becomes a private hotel again, I could one day treat myself with some vacation there if the budget permits. It should still be cheaper than the mondain St Moritz a bit further. So thanks CM giving me the possibility to go to Maloja again!!