A Maserati spin to Neuchâtel

posted on | updated on | by Zuri Girl

MaseratiWe love cars. And we bet we’re not the only Zuri Girls who do . . . Zurich is a fab place to live if you love cars. On any given day we see (and hear – oh the purrrrrr!) a variety of incredible machines that make us drool.

And let’s get one thing straight . . . we don’t want to ride in these cars . . . we want to DRIVE these cars. And not just up and down Seestrasse. We want to see how these babies perform.

Our mother is visiting from the States, and for her birthday, we decided to go on a mini Swiss road trip to Solothurn and Neuchâtel. We took advantage of the generous offer to test drive a 2015 Maserati Ghibli Diesel for a few days.

Yes, please. And thank you. Very much.

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The Maserati Ghibli Diesel

This 3.0 liter twin-turbocharged V-6 piece of heaven is gorgeous. While it screams luxury, it’s also practical; as much as we’d love a Granturismo Convertible (hint, hint), the practicality, along with the sexiness of this four door Ghibli make it a perfect compromise. You can cart your kids to football practice, pop by Globus for groceries, head to the gym for spin class and travel to the mountains with friends on the weekend. We guarantee it will make errands, road trips and even being the ‘mom taxi’ much, much more enjoyable.

Road Trip: The Ride

After a quick tour around the block with Mirko, our Maserati guy, we were off. As we slipped behind the wheel, we were a little sad to see that our Ghibli was an automatic. One of our favorite parts of driving is the feel of revving RPMs and knowing just when to shift . . . But guess what? It’s both! The eight-speed automatic offers a manual shift mode as well – it’s got paddles (or flippers, as we called them) along both sides of the steering wheel where you can shift up and down. Once we started, we couldn’t stop. We hit the sport button and flipped our way up and down the gears like Mario Andretti. Amazing. And such fun. The best of both worlds!

We do realize there are strict speed limits here in Switzerland and we obey them, of course, and though we were quite tempted to head north to the Autobahn to really let loose, we responsibly programmed cruise control and headed south.

Zuri Girl Tip: Unlike other places, if you run a yellow light or go over the speed limit (even by 1 km), you will not be stopped by the police and have the opportunity to talk your way out of it. You will get a little envelope in the mail. Boo. So while you’re inhaling the delicious scent of fine leather and listening to your favorite crooners waft out of the perfectly placed speakers, don’t forget to watch out for the moveable speed traps.

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IMG_3412Road Trip Stop: Solothurn

After getting used to our new wheels for a bit, we decided we needed a little sustenance and popped into picturesque Solothurn for a bite. We love Bindella in Zurich and wanted to give Cantinetta Bindella a try. It was heaven. In the garden, under the shade of the trees, we felt as though we were in a private olive grove in Italy. Our handsome server, Konstantinos was attentive and charming as he kept our water glasses filled (no wine with lunch today, silly) and delivered the perfect plates of carpaccio and grilled vegetables to our shady table. We could have stayed sitting and relaxing all afternoon, but our new boyfriend, Ghibli, was patiently waiting and we were eager to get back to him.

Road Trip Stop: Neuchâtel

Neuchâtel is a beautiful lakeside spot – how had we never been here before? It’s not so far, yet feels like we’re in France. We fell in love immediately.

As it was Mummy’s birthday, we decided to splurge and stay at the gorgeous lakefront Beau Rivage Hotel, and we’re glad we did. The service was fabulous and the room large by European standards, with windows overlooking the placid lake.

The included breakfast buffet was one of the best we’ve had in a long time. Fresh and stocked with more than we could eat in a day. (Though we did our best to make a dent in the spread, not to worry.) While we were nibbling on delectable croissants (not gipfeli, we’re in the French part of Switzerland now), we curiously watched people walk down to a little beach and drop down into the clear water.

We always pack our swimsuits on road trips – a girl should be prepared for anything – and so decided after breakfast, we’d throw caution to the wind, not wait the requisite hour, and test the waters ourselves. We were on holiday, after all.

We inquired about the swimming spot at the front desk and the woman offered us late check out so we could truly enjoy the swim. Now that’s service! We donned our white hotel robes and slippers and didn’t care how silly we looked as we made our way down the promenade to what was surely the most perfect dip of the season (thus far).

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IMG_3248Yes, Please! 1 Blue Emozione Mica

We were having such a glorious time in Neuchâtel, we nearly forgot we had the drive home in our Maserati to look forward to. (We like the sound of that – “Our Maserati”.) We took the highway for a while and pushed the (speed) limits, smiles pasted to our faces, (0 to 60 mph in a mere 5 seconds!) then pulled off and took the back roads, looking for twists and turns to check out the handling. A+ all the way.

It was hard to say goodbye to our amazing, sleek, new friend. Like when you leave a fancy hotel room which was ‘yours’ for a few days, it’s somehow quite difficult to give it back to its rightful owners.

If you’re in the market for a new car, take a Ghibli out for a spin, you won’t regret it. And if you purchase one, please get one for us too. We’ll take the Blue Emozione Mica with Cucio interior. And thanks in advance, you’re awfully generous.

 

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Kristen VermilyeaContributed by: Zuri Girl Kristen Vermilyea, an American actor, filmmaker, writer and artist who has lived in Zurich for nearly 6 years. She hosts the Zurich Film Festival TV show and is a social media and film consultant.  When not watching and writing about film, she keeps busy attempting to learn to play new instruments as her four year old daughter has insisted they start a band.