We’re bombarded by advertisements all day, every day, virtually everywhere we look. This kind of over-saturation can lead to “ad blindness,” where we just sort of tune out the ads around us to the best of our abilities.
While some brands work to find ever more irritating ways to get through to their target audiences, others are growing savvy to the fact that if you want to reach people, entice them to buy your products, and build trust in your brand, you have to actually provide them with something useful.
Swiss running brand On demonstrates one way to do that with the “On Mountain Hut,” a beautiful reflective cabin set high up in the Alps on the Piz Lunghin. The project marks the launch of the brand’s latest collection, including its first hiking shoe, but it’s also designed to offer a little something special to runners and hikers in the area.
Swiss alpine huts are a centuries-old tradition, and while some can be rented and reserved ahead of time, others are first-come, first-serve and free to anyone who may come along.
The company explains: “For us, the mountains are a source of energy, ideas, and innovation. They have the power to invigorate and provide fresh perspective. In fact, the first ever On business plan was put together by our three co-founders while hiking in Engadin. You might say that if it wasn’t for these mountains, On wouldn’t exist. Literally, they are our source.”
“Since then, they have continued to play a pivotal role in our development; shaping our technology, our products, and our ethos. And why not? Overcoming mountains demands serious research, planning, perseverance, and commitment. You have to do things right; there are no shortcuts. We are proud to champion the same approach with our innovations.”
On’s designers say they wanted to “go back to the source” of their inspiration to celebrate the release of the Cloudrock waterproof hiking shoe. Their intention is to celebrate the beauty of the Engadin Valley while also offering a peaceful place to rest for everyone who passes by.
Inside the minimal mountain cabin, which is only accessible by foot, is a simple plywood-clad interior with built-in tables and seating, a wood stove and kettle for heating up simple meals, picture windows overlooking the incredible views, and even a lofted bed.
There’s room for two people to relax inside the self-sustainable cabin, which is powered by solar panels and features a rooftop rain collector that filters rainwater for use inside. You might expect to see references to the shoe and other products by On plastered all over every surface, but the brand keeps it simple and subtle with just a single logo on the exterior.
Minimalist and modular, the off-grid refuge is made almost entirely of local wood and designed to disassemble easily so it can be removed at a later date, giving it a light footprint on the land.
Whether adventurers set out to find the cabin or happen upon it by accident, chances are they’ll remember the hospitality it provides and associate that feeling with the brand well into the future.