Who hasn't heard the story of the restaurant guest who first treats himself to a delicious meal and then has to settle the bill by doing the washing up ? At the Sunstar Hotel Flims – then called the "Grand Hotel Surselva" – something similar happened in the early 1940s. However, the person who was unable to pay was none other than the Swiss artist Alois Carigiet.
How do the hotel staff react when a guest wants to check out and it turns out they are unable to pay? Let's look back to the occasion when this happened to the guest Alois Carigiet. It was in the year 1942. The Second World War was in full swing and the age of the computer and smartphone still belonged in the realm of science fiction. So there he stood at the reception desk, the future creator of "Schellen-Ursli". At that time no one imagined that, after 1945, his children's story about the little Graubünden boy with the pointed cap would make him famous around the world.
Alois Carigiet was born in the Surselva region of Graubünden in 1902 and passed away there, too, in 1985. Almost everything that the Swiss painter, illustrator, lithographer and children's author undertook became a success. So it's obvious how he settled his bill: his solution is still hanging on the wall. Taking a refreshingly pragmatic approach, the hotel staff allowed the artist to pay with a painting. Ever since, an unusually large work by Carigiet has graced the hotel's wine cellar and many other, much smaller, pictures by him hang on the walls. There is also the cosy "Carigiet-Stübli", where we treat our guests to Swiss specialities and fondue. We are very grateful to Alois Carigiet for his Graubünden pictures and we look after them with the utmost care!