Her time in Switzerland gave Tina Turner a glimpse of a normal life after a tumultuous life in her native United States.
KÜSNACHT, Switzerland — In her adopted country, Tina Turner was more than just a spinning rock, R&B and pop superstar. She moved to Switzerland unapologetically for her discretion and calmness, taking her very public persona to a very private country. He enjoyed his life as a Swiss citizen – and the feeling was mutual.
Love seems to have something to do with it, too: In her 2018 memoir, “My Love Story,” Turner opened up about her feelings for her longtime boyfriend-turned-husband Eron Bach — a German record producer. which was established in Switzerland. She moved to join him in the mid-1990s, nearly a decade after they first met.
Mourners laid flowers and candles Thursday outside the gate of the couple’s lakeside villa rental, “Chateau Algonquin,” in the upscale town of Kuesnacht, southeast of Zurich, where they settled in 2013. They married, and lived together for decades. Death on Wednesday At the age of 83
It was an unusual tribute – reflecting the Swiss discretion that had drawn him to the rich Alpine country.
Neighbors didn’t bother asking him for autographs or photos. Many Swiss took pride in being able to retreat from the pressures of media attention here. It gives her a glimpse of normal life after a tumultuous one in her native United States, including at the hands of her late ex-husband Ike who discovers her, marries her and – according to her memoirs – Beat with violence.
Past celebrities including Charlie Chaplin and Freddie Mercury, as well as living stars such as Sophia Loren and Shania Twain, have been drawn to Switzerland – often for its well-known respect for private lives. Roman Polanski briefly hid out in an Alpine chalet to subvert American justice, and some of the world’s financial experts and business gurus were drawn to the country’s relatively low taxes and secrecy in money matters.
Turner, who immigrated in the mid-1990s and took Swiss citizenship in 2013. Parting with his US passport – was arguably the most famous resident in recent years.
Swiss President Alain Berset tweeted tributes to Turner, calling her an icon and saying her thoughts were with the relatives of the inspirational woman, who found a second homeland in Switzerland.
Markus Ernst, mayor of Quesnacht, a bucolic town on the shores of Lake Zurich, said Turner was active in the community – regularly lighting the annual Christmas tree and once inaugurating a municipal rescue boat named “Tina.” has been — but the natives went there. Going out of their way to help even a loaded public figure enjoy a private life.
“One of the reasons he came to Switzerland was to live a completely normal life,” he said by phone. “She could go to a restaurant without being photographed all the time … on the street, people wouldn’t stare at her or ask for her autograph.”
Coming to pay his respects, art dealer Renate Fetscheren, who has lived in the town for decades, said people in Switzerland “would never bother anyone, you know?” And the couple can rest easy: “They don’t have to worry about the paparazzi because we don’t have them!”
“Quissnacht was very proud to have such a famous person here,” Fetscheren said. He recalled how Turner and Bach—clearly for good—were rooted in Switzerland. Reportedly bought a villa last year. Down the lake from the city.
At his upscale eatery just a couple of hundred meters from the villa, restaurateur Rico Zandonella remembers Turner as a “very dear friend” and a frequent guest who once visited his colleagues there. had a birthday celebration with “the one who sang for him: it was really a great celebration.”
“Tina Turner is a huge personality when she walks into a room. She has a really great aura — a personality that explodes like a bomb, like she’s on stage.
A statement from her longtime manager, Bernard Doherty, said a private funeral was planned among close family and friends, adding: “Please respect her privacy.”
Years ago, Turner described his life’s milestones and his love and commitment to Switzerland in a glossy TV ad for the communications company Swisscom, which featured young actors who played key moments in their early lives and careers. Portrayed him in both.
He pointed to stereotypes about Switzerland as the home of William Tell or the center of ice-skating prowess; She was sitting in a rocking boat in a lake with a mobile phone in her hand. Turner described how her friends had to adapt to her Swiss tastes, as an actor portraying her made a dish of cheese quizzically from fictional guests.
Another actor watched fans gasp as flashbulbs went off as she climbed into the back seat of a limousine next to the real Turner, and the superstar quipped: “As time went on, I found out about Switzerland. Learned more, like security and discretion are for people. Top priority – like they are for me.”
“And when I finally moved to Switzerland, it immediately felt like home,” he reflected. “People here respect each other’s privacy, care for each other.”
Jamie Keaton contributed to this report.