End of an era at Guido’s | AspenTimes.com

End of an era at Guido’s

Naomi Havlen
Aspen Times Staff Writer

Say farewell to fondue: Guido’s Swiss Inn will close its doors at the end of this ski season.

The restaurant, which opened for business in Aspen in 1953, is up for sale, according to owner Rosie Wettstein. Her father, Guido Meyer, settled in Aspen after cooking for American pilots in Switzerland during World War II.

Wettstein said she considered closing the business last year but decided to remain open through the 2001-02 ski season.

“The last couple of years haven’t been that great, for a lot of reasons,” Wettstein said. “Basically, it’s the whole economy. This has turned into a whole different town.”

The second-floor restaurant at Cooper Avenue and Galena Street is known for its fondue and desserts like apple strudel. Wettstein said her family is looking for another restaurant to lease the space, though if one can’t be found another commercial business could fill the space.

“This is the end of an era,” she said. “My dad started it in 1953, and it’s been in the family the whole time.”

Wettstein took over the restaurant from her father in 1987. Her father moved to Aspen in 1950, cooking first for the Golden Horn Restaurant and a year later buying several buildings on five lots on Cooper Avenue.

He built one story of the Swiss Inn in 1952 and added a second floor in 1957. Meyer spent long hours in the kitchen running the business until 1971, when he leased his kitchen to operators who kept the name.

The old buildings were replaced in 1970, and there’s been at least one major remodel since then. The family still owns the series of buildings along the Cooper Avenue mall.

Wettstein said the last day for dining at Guido’s will be April 13.

“Everyone who has ever worked here, or ever been thrown out of here, should venture in for our last month,” she said.

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