Wednesday, March 29, 2023

The best emigrant stories of the year

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The best emigrant stories of the year

+ This is how the Blick community lives in foreign countries

In 2022, too, many Swiss abroad from the Blick community told us their stories. This is how they settled into their new home.


The Zurich couple Sylvia Heri and François Heitz have fulfilled their dream of living in France in a stately home in Francescas near Nérac.

Almost two thirds of the Swiss abroad live in Europe, most of them in France. Roberto Balzaretti (57), Swiss Ambassador in France, knows a few reasons why so many Swiss people emigrate to France and explained this in an interview with Blick. Numerous Blick readers have also found a new home in France and told their motives.

Derelict country estate in France

The Zurich couple Sylvia Heri (45) and François Heitz (53) have fulfilled a dream in France. The two bought a 16th-century royal country estate near Nérac and completely renovated the ruins. The property with 40,000 square meters of land in south-west France cost less than one million Swiss francs. The couple knows that something like this would be unaffordable in Switzerland. The guest house Maison Duroy runs on the historic property.

A Zurich couple revamps a 16th-century country residence

Dream property in France: A Zurich couple revamps a 16th-century country residence(02:57)

For Florence Wibring (49) from Derendingen SO, love was the reason that she moved to Sweden with her dogs. In seclusion, she and her husband enjoy life away from the hustle and bustle. Next, the couple wants to build a guest house next to their own house, which they want to rent out to dog lovers.

“We have to walk two kilometers to the mailbox”

Your new house is remote: “We have to walk two kilometers to the mailbox”(02:52)

Cheese producer in Brazil

Outside of Europe, Brazil is a very popular new home for the Swiss abroad. One of them who has built a new life there is Stephan Gähwiler (63). The qualified farmer has been living in Brazil for 40 years. Outside of Corumbá de Goiás in the state of Goiás, he owns 165 hectares of land and produces cheese on his own farm. The Swiss has received several awards for this in Brazil. Its cheese can be found in many restaurants and gourmet shops in Brazil.

This Swiss makes the best raclette in Brazil

He has lived there for 40 years: This Swiss makes the best raclette in Brazil(02:00)

The couple Kunz-Abraham lives in one of the poorest countries. Robert Kunz-Abraham (79) and his wife Rupa (70) have lived in Oberrieden ZH in India since 2003. The couple with four adopted children set up a children’s home and a school in the village of Elluvila and invested the pension fund money in their project. With around CHF 3,000 AHV, the couple lives well in India. They are convinced that they can do more social good there than in Switzerland.

“Basically, we are privileged – we have the AHV!

The Kunz family emigrated: This is how a Swiss couple lives in India(02:58)

A paradise in Australia

Since his first trip to Australia in the 1990s, Jakob Meier (79) has been fascinated by the country and its people and wanted to emigrate. At 56 he took early retirement and made his dream come true. Meier has lived in Blackbutt since 1999 and runs a bed and breakfast with his late love Lucy Kussler (74). The retired couple does not want to return to Switzerland. They have made provisions so that they can stay in their little paradise.

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