Turner, who immigrated to the country in the mid-1990s and took Swiss citizenship in 2013 — giving up her U.S. passport — is arguably the country’s most famous resident in recent years.
Swiss President Alain Berset paid tribute to Turner on Twitter, calling her an icon and saying “his heart goes out to the relatives of this impressive woman who found a second home in Switzerland. “
Markus Ernst, the mayor of Kuesnacht, an idyllic town on the shores of Lake Zurich, said Turner was active in the community, regularly lighting the annual Christmas tree, It also inaugurated a municipal rescue boat named Tina.
However, he said locals went out of their way to help a most public figure enjoy his private life.
“One of the reasons she came to Switzerland was to have a completely normal life,” he said. “She can go to a restaurant and not be photographed all the time … on the street, people don’t stare at her or ask for her autograph.”
Renate Fetscherin, an art dealer who has lived in the town for decades and stopped by her villa, said the Swiss “never bother anyone” and the couple always had peace of mind: “They don’t have to worry about the paparazzi because we No.”
“Kuesnacht is very proud to have such a celebrity here,” Fetscherin said.
At the upscale restaurant just a few hundred meters from the villa, restaurateur Rico Zandonella recalled Turner as a “very close friend” and a regular who celebrated birthdays there with colleagues. “They sang for her: it was such a great celebration”
“When Tina Turner walks into a room, she’s such a personality. She has a really great aura — a personality that goes off like a bomb, like she’s on stage Same,” he said.
Years ago, Turner featured milestones in her life and her love and affinity for Switzerland in a glitzy TV commercial for communications company Swisscom, with young actors playing her role.
It alludes to stereotypes of Switzerland, such as the home of William Tell or the center of skating power; she sits on a rickety rowboat in a lake surrounded by majestic mountains, her phone in hand . Turner recounts how her friends acclimatized to her Swiss tastes, and an actor playing her greets the odd gaze of fictional guests with a tin of fondue.
Another actor waved to fans as the flash went off as she climbed into the back of a limo next to the real Turner and the superstar.
“As time went on, I learned more about Switzerland and felt that safety and caution were people’s top priorities – as they were for me,” Turner said.
“When I finally moved to Switzerland, it felt like home. People here respect each other’s privacy, [they] Take care of each other. “
Get a note directly from our foreigner correspondent About headlines around the world. Sign up for the weekly ‘What’s In The World’ newsletter here.