Save Chalet Martin! Mountain Hostel

CHF15,580 of CHF50,000 goal

Raised by 124 people in 9 months
We are so grateful that you are taking the time to read about our campaign. We hope that our friends can help us save our beautiful hostel before Chalet Martin as we know it is lost forever.


To those who know this place, I need not explain its importance or its beauty. Perched on a hillside in the alpine village of Gryon, surrounded by the majestic landscape of the Southern Swiss Alps, lies Chalet Martin. Travellers young and old and from all walks of life have wandered off the beaten path and through our doors over the past 7 years. Inspired by a love of exploration and adventure, these travellers have arrived as guests and left as friends. We now need to ask those of you who have fallen under the spell of Chalet Martin to help us. We are in danger of losing the place that has stolen all of our hearts.

The owner of Chalet Martin wishes to sell, and he is willing to sell it to us for a very reasonable price as he would like to see it continue as a hostel. However, what is a reasonable price in Switzerland is still unaffordable for us. We have saved, begged and borrowed as much money as we possibly can from our family so we can preserve and continue sharing this iconic experience of the Swiss Alps for years to come. But it is not enough. It is now crunch time and we have been given less than 2 years to raise $100,000. It seems like our dreams of saving the chalet are slipping away. 

This is our last resort. We know that there are many problems in the world greater than ours. But we know that people coming together can make magic happen. We know that your act of kindness in helping to save this awesome place makes you a part of something truly special.

The chalet itself was built in 1909 and has been operated by us, Merlin and Gemma, for the past 7 years. During this time the hostel has won many awards for its outstanding atmosphere and hospitality; the most recent being the 2017 Certificate of Excellence and the 2018 Travellers Choice award from TripAdvisor. However these awards cannot begin to describe how special and important this place is to us and the people that come here. Unlike other hostels, Chalet Martin truly feels like a home from home. From those who are thirsty for adventure in the mountains, to those who seek solitude and solace, our guests are united by a desire for an authentic and unique experience. We think this is special, and something that is worth fighting for.

Any money that is donated will go entirely towards purchasing the chalet and the further renovations that are needed to preserve it for the future. During our years here we have spent over 30k of our own money on renovations alone to improve it for everyone, and more still needs to be done. 

This place means so much to myself, Gemma and our two children, Willow and Winter. It is our home. But it is also a home to everyone who comes here and experiences this unique little piece of the world. We want to continue sharing this building, this space and these adventures with people with a lust for life who may not otherwise be able to afford Swiss prices. We want to continue to inspire, excite and unite people from all over the world. 

As a small token of our huge gratitude for anything you can give, we are offering these reminders of
Chalet Martin.

Donate $10 or more and receive a Chalet Martin snowboard/ski/helmet sticker.

Donate $50 or more and receive a limited edition Chalet Martin A4 print created by the hugely talented Gemma.

Donate $100 or more and receive a Chalet Martin T-Shirt and 20% discount on your next stay.

Donate $250 or more and receive a Chalet Martin hoodie, a limited edition A4 print and a 30% discount on your next stay.

Donate $500 or more and receive a free 2 day stay for two people in one of our dorm rooms with free ski or snowboard hire and a vineyard tour for two (and some goodies).

Donate $1000 or more:

SNOW - receive a 3 day weekend for 2 in the “En-Suite” room, with free ski hire (and some goodies)

SUN – receive a 3 day weekend for 2 in the “En-Suite” room and a local tour of vineyards and free access to summer lifts (and some goodies).

Donate $10,000 or more:

SNOW - receive an all-inclusive 7 day stay in our Rustic Suite, ski hire for 2, lift pass for 2 and a personalised guide through the local Alps with cross country ski or snow shoes (aerial video of your experience included!), plus a life time of gratitude! And we will rename a room after you!

SUN - receive an all-inclusive 7 day stay in our Rustic Suite, lift pass for 2 and a personalised guide through the local Alps via mountain bike or road bike (aerial video of your experience included!)

We would like to thank you from the bottom of our hearts for whatever you can give, no matter how small. If you can’t give anything please like and share our message on Facebook and help us make our dreams a reality.

Love Merlin and Gemma
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Update 2
Posted by Merlin Cousins
25 days ago
Dear All,

Merry Christmas and a happy new year to everyone! We wanted to give an honest update on our project. After the amazing response from the go fund me campaign we have been working non stop to secure the finance for the project. I (merlin) took on an extra full time job to add to the project fund. We have secured the 25% we needed for the down payment for the Chalet but now it’s in the banks hands. We wanted to thank you again for your generosity and support we are committed to honoring our promises. We hope to bring you more news in the new year.
Thanks again for your patience generosity and support, have a good new year!
All the best
Everyone at Chalet Martin X
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Update 1
Posted by Merlin Cousins
7 months ago
Hi Everyone! Thanks so much for your support! It has been amazing! We have received so many personal messages as well as donations, feeling very humbled.. and Great full, Thank you... Progress report: We are meeting next week to try secure more funding for the project!We will let you know how this goes. Regarding the goodies these will be ordered/made as soon as we secure the sale..Rest assured we have not forgotten your kindness and the rewards will be with you as soon as possible. Lots of love Merls, the W's and everyone here at Chalet Martin
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CHF15,580 of CHF50,000 goal

Raised by 124 people in 9 months
Created April 21, 2018
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Matt Goodwin
2 hours ago
Lyn Campbell
2 months ago

I donated because this is a little piece of paradise that should be available for all to share and enjoy forever. It is the people running it and the friendliness of those you meet who create such wonderful memories. Thank you and looking forward to returning soon xx

tyler flake
4 months ago

Keep living the dream my friend. Hope it works out. You have a beautiful family.

Matt Jordan
4 months ago

Good luck, and see you in the Spring! X

Cassandra Graham
5 months ago
5 months ago
5 months ago
Vivian Norris
6 months ago

Love this place Love Gryon See you soon!!

The Barnes Family
6 months ago

May your dreams come true!

Xeve Feliu
6 months ago
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