Appenzell is a star on the tourist route in this part of Switzerland – it’s full of houses with brightly painted exteriors showing folk scenes and folk motifs. There are plenty of places to stay, but if it’s with- in your budget, it’s worth seriously considering Säntis. It’s on the town square, and brightly painted along with the rest, but not just a pretty face. It happens to be the only four-star in town, which indicates its quality, but, of course, we rate hotels on other factors as well.
  The Heeb family are hands-on owner- managers (we met the friendly Stefan) and there is an intimate, relaxed buzz in the public spaces downstairs, including the attractive dining room with its green ceramic stove. In the right conditions you can eat outside, on the square, under an awning and here we enjoyed the three- course set menu, which non-residents clearly think is fair value.
   Upstairs the rooms are as neat and as comfortable as you would expect, but with some standardized colour schemes and fittings. There is a useful choice of inter- connecting family rooms.
   ‘We never stop making changes’ says Stefan Heeb, who can claim to run the area's best-known inn.