Everything might be bigger in Texas, but for interior designer Michelle Nussbaumer, the smallness of the Swiss village of Gstaad is magic to her soul.
By Angela Caraway-Carlton
While flat, metropolitan Dallas, Texas and the soaring, snow-draped mountains of quaint Gstaad, Switzerland, could hardly be more different,
the two distinctive places that renowned interior designer Michelle Nussbaumer calls home often feel warmly familiar.
“As a Texan, we have a love and a reverence for the land, and it’s very similar in Switzerland with the farmers,” says Nussbaumer. “When we were last in Gstaad, we were walking through the woods to the [Mirage] exhibit, and we passed this family of farmers eating their lunch outside, and they were all yodeling together. The soulfulness of their voices—it was magical.”
“Magical” is a word that Nussbaumer uses time and again to describe Gstaad, an idyllic village in southwest Switzerland known for its powdery slopes, gingerbread-brown chalets, opulent resorts—and a reputation for drawing a flashy, jet-set crowd of royals and celebs. Although Nussbaumer was born and raised in Texas, she’s always had a family connection with the picturesque Alpine village; growing up, her uncle had a home there, and later, she met and married Swiss movie producer Bernard Nussbaumer, whose family owns Institut Le Rosey in Gstaad, one of the most prestigious and expensive boarding schools in the world. All four of their children attended the private school, and since marrying 36 years ago, Nussbaumer has spent every Christmas in Gstaad, often staying through winter, and then summering there as well…