Art Basel is not just about the art—it’s a perfect chance to meet friends and colleagues from across the art world. We asked some Basel regulars about their favourite spots to greet and eat.
Director, Galerie Kamel Mennour
Les Trois Rois is a great place to unwind. It has an amazing view overlooking the Rhine with great food, fresh from the market. I go to the Fondation Beyeler to walk around the gardens and enjoy the treasures of such a fabulous collection.
Artistic director, Pinacoteca Agnelli
Chez Donati is a legendary venue where Dieter Roth went—and many other artists, collectors and gallerists. Bodega zum Strauss is in the centre and popular with the art world. The most eccentric apéro bar in Basel is Schluggstube: in the centre, hidden, unknown but legendary!
Stefan von Bartha
Director, Von Bartha gallery, Basel
There are many places I like to eat—it’s tricky to pick one. A classic is the Rhyschänzli, which is ideal if you love meat. On the opposite end of the spectrum, we have a new and outstanding vegan/vegetarian restaurant called Lauch.The best place to get away from the fair is Spielweg, a hotel and restaurant around 45 minutes from Basel. They have the most insane kitchen and a very charming hotel. For something closer, I suggest the Le Rhin Bleu. You can have a swim and then enjoy dinner overlooking the Rhine.
There are two that always find their way into my programme. There’s the Vitra Summer Party at their campus, which is such an amazing event—last time I was there, Virgil Abloh was DJing in the rain. Secondly, Roma at Hammerstrasse is where I end up eating nearly all meals during Art Basel. Simple, high-quality food and service. It is almost always fully booked, yet they somehow manage to find me a table every time. And no Basel night would be complete without after-hours drinks at Les Trois Rois.
Curator of this year’s Venice Biennale
I haven’t been there in a while but I remember a nice place in Clarastrasse, very casual, called Klara—lots of little restaurants and food stalls near the fair.
Co-founder, Balice Hertling
I go to Chanthaburi Restaurant Sairung almost every day during the fair. I try to stay healthy but can’t help having a massive schnitzel at Zum Braunen Mutz. I also love the restaurant at the Kunsthalle Basel just because I can meet everyone. The art world is a dysfunctional family but somehow we all get together in one place at least once a year!
Partner and executive director, Hauser & Wirth
Every year, the Fondation Beyeler collaborates with the Basel nightclub Nordstern for their “sun.set” series, bringing renowned DJs to play in the surrounding park of the Beyeler. This year they have invited international DJ Peggy Gou to play on Saturday 18 June—one not to be missed… if you can get a ticket. The restaurant at the Kunsthalle Basel is a famed, elegant brasserie. For something more casual, Peng Dumplings is fantastic for homemade Chinese dumplings in Gundeli, and the recently opened Miake Izakaya is one of the best places for authentic Japanese food, with a décor modelled on a traditional Japanese izakaya.