cereneo Schweiz AG, About us and motivation
cereneo Schweiz AG, About us and motivation

cereneo is a Swiss clinic and research institution specialising in neurorehabilitation. It is located on the banks of Lake Lucerne and was founded in 2012.

cereneo is unique. Specialised in terms of its various therapy approaches and the individual support it provides. cereneo is motivation. cereneo can call upon a highly motivated team with lots of specialist knowledge. This then motivates patients to test their limits every day and enables them to win back their freedom and independence in daily life.

Motivation & Sports

Motivation matters. Motivation is the motor of progress. Motivation is the key to change. Motivation makes it possible to go beyond boundaries. Motivation starts from within.

cereneo - the clinic and its team - are convinced of this. They recognize that the recovery process depends on an interwoven combination of

  • the patient,
  • their social environment and
  • the medical and therapeutic support.

cereneo consistently involves the patient and his or her social environment to implement therapeutic measures in an individualized and flexible manner. Therapists and doctors provide daily information about improvements and next steps to actively engage, and better motivate, the patient in his or her own recovery.

"Never, never, never give up." It’s the message cereneo brings to its patients; and it’s an attitude that optimizes the mindset and high performance of a top-level athlete. That’s what inspired cereneo to connect with the elite triathlon scene through the development of a dedicated program for potential world champions. The idea is to foster knowledge exchange between the two fields and incorporate the latest approaches for increasing motivation – into therapy for patients, into training for athletes, and into lifestyle choices for everyone who wants to reduce the risk for stroke and other conditions.

Motivation. It’s the common denominator shared among the cereneo clinic and its patients as well as cereneo triathlon and its athletes.

Please read more about our engagement in triathlon: cereneo Triathlon - Motivation matters.

Testimonial H. P.

"In October 2014 I suffered a stroke and was taken to the University Hospital of Zurich, where they recommended cereneo to me. My stroke was a "tsunami in my head" - I could no longer write, which was a nightmare for me. The cereneo team gave me back part of my independence and freedom. I learned the small things of life again and, with the active support of cereneo, battled my way back to life one step at a time. Before my stroke painting had been my hobby; I can now enjoy this again thanks to the efforts and patience of the therapy term at cereneo! I was very well looked after, everyone was there for me and I made really good friends! Finally, I would like to say: cereneo set me major challenges every day – but without cereneo I would never have recovered so well!"

H. P.


Michael Horacek


CEO & President of the Administrative Council

Michael Horacek, born in Austria, is the Managing Director of cereneo. He was shaped by entrepreneurial values from an early age and his passion lies in successfully launching start-ups and project management.

As a triathlete he understands the important interaction between technology and people. And this is precisely what he implements at cereneo. World-class medicine and corresponding treatment require exceptional performance from the team and the best research. A global network of experts and the specialisation in neurotherapy make it possible to achieve the best possible progress for the patients. Michael Horacek is also convinced that the approach will reduce therapy costs in the long term, as treatments are targeted and more intense.

  • cereneo Group: CEO & President of the Administrative Council (since 2012)
  • Foundation council: cereneo - center for interdisciplinary research (cefir) non-profit foundation
Prof. Dr. Med. Andreas R. Luft


Medical Director

Prof. Luft is a neurologist and clinical scientist, Professor at Zurich University and Medical Director at cereneo. He also runs the Stroke Centre at the University Hospital of Zurich.

He is known internationally for his research in the field of neurorehabilitation. As the creator of the medical and scientific concept of cereneo, he is convinced that patients who have suffered brain injury or a stroke need constant and empathetic support based on the latest clinical findings in order to make the best possible recovery.

  • Degree in Human Medicine at Tubingen University, Germany (1991-1998)
  • Training in Neurology at Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, USA and Tubingen University, Germany (1998-2005)
  • Assistant Professor for Clinical Neurorehabilitation at Zurich University (2008-2013)
  • Professor for Vascular Neurology and Rehabilitation at Zurich University (since 2014)
  • associated Professor at D-HEST at ETH Zurich (since June 2016)
Dr. Kai Lutz


Scientific Director

Since qualifying as a psychologist, Dr. rer. nat. Kai Lutz has conducted research into the human brain using neuroscientific methods. In particular, he has had many articles about the motor system published in internationally renowned specialist magazines. In his capacity as Head of Research and a neuropsychologist he deploys his established knowledge to continually improve diagnostics and therapy at cereneo.

  • Degree in Psychology at Düsseldorf University, Germany (1991-1997) and at the Health Sciences Center, Oklahoma City, USA (1994-1995)
  • Doctorate at the Institute of Medicine, Jülich Research Centre, Germany (1997-1998) and at the Institute of General Psychology, Magdeburg University, Germany (1998-2002)
  • Postdoctoral researcher and Assistant Professor to the Chair of Neuropsychology, Zurich University, Switzerland (2002-2013)
Leopold Zizlsperger


Deputy Medical Director

cereneo offers a unique connection between modern neurorehabilitation and the bases of neuroscientific research, and I find it a motivational and creative place to work. Multidisciplinary teams make it possible to provide innovative and individual treatment tailored to every patient.

I am personally motivated by the goal of helping every individual patient to achieve maximum functionality and independence, so that they can enjoy an active lifestyle and a high quality of life. I am also motivated by continually improving the strategies for rehabilitation.

I find my work at cereneo very satisfying: together with our help, patients and their families can successfully reorganise their lives, also on an emotional, cognitive and social level.

Marta Gonzalez


Head of Therapy

I've been working at cereneo since the beginning and was able to play an active role in the development. In our small and dedicated team we work closely together with the doctors and carers and, through the constant exchanges with them, can develop the ideal therapies for our patients.

I am motivated and fascinated by the use of the latest high quality resources and devices, experiencing how the therapy forms constantly develop, and seeing how the patients get better and can go back to their former way of life.

Dragana Cujic


Head of Care

At cereneo, a highly specialized team works together with the patients to provide best in class service.

Care at cereneo is based on the definition of professional care in Switzerland. The focus is on neurorehabilitative care. For us this implies close cooperation between the interdisciplinary team and the patients and their relatives.

The satisfaction of patients and family members and of course, the patients ´progress are our highest priority. In order to achieve these goals, I am keen to create the ideal conditions, to enable the best possible qualitative development of specialized neurorehabilitative care. This includes a motivating working environment in which satisfied nurses and apprentices work.


Irene Christen


Administrative Head of Therapy

cereneo offers space for innovation and highly patient-oriented work. This requires flexibility in the operational structures and, above all, from all of the employees as no two days are the same.

I enjoy the opportunity to think creatively, develop ideas and implement them quickly to offer our patients the best possible rehabilitation. The interdisciplinary exchange with the management team is very enriching and creates an exciting place to learn every day.

Filomena Gomes


Nutrition Specialist

cereneo offers therapies in line with the latest scientific standards. Working in a highly motivated clinical and research-oriented team enables me to offer our patients exceptional and balanced nutrition. cereneo is unique as it offers customised care plans tailored to the needs of the individual patient – including their nutrition. cereneo also provides an appealing international environment and makes it possible to develop research cooperations.

I am convinced that nutrition plays an important role in the different stages of neurological illnesses and thus has the potential to optimise the patient’s rehabilitation. Seeing this become reality at cereneo is the greatest motivation for me!



2010: An idea

An idea

The field of neurorehabilitation is not yet making full use of its potential to improve neurological disability. A better understanding of the physiological processes of recovering and learning in the brain, the use of new procedures and a higher therapy intensity (longer therapy duration) offer the prospect of improved recovery after damage to the brain.
The foundation, Michael Horacek and Professor Andreas Luft discuss existing institutions, concepts and the need for a neurorehabilitation clinic.


2011: Development work

Development work

A needs analysis and business case for the clinic in Vitznau are created together with specialist partners from the fields of hospital planning, the insurance industry, science and many other experts. This is followed by many discussions with insurance companies, doctors, health authorities and personnel development specialists. The vision of a clinic with a new therapy concept, where all patients are treated equally and there are no differences between insured patients and those paying themselves, starts to take shape.


2012: The foundation

The foundation

After a two year preparation phase, cereno AG was founded in Vitznau in April 2012. The new neurorehabilitation clinic is the first new provider in this segment for decades. The differences from the other providers in the canton are clear to see. The architecture and facilities were created with great attention to detail and with the aim of providing excellent neurorehabilitation. At cereneo there is a lot of space and facilities - this is done in the interest of the patients and their relatives.


2013: The opening

The opening

cereneo opened its doors to patients for the first time in 2013. At this time the team at cereneo consisted of 16 people. For the carers, therapists, doctors and all of the other employees it was the start of an exciting journey towards building a new clinic with a new structure and new concepts. Evidence for the ideas was sought.


2015: Proof of Concept

Proof of concept

The clinic is now established. At the start of the year there are 10 carers, 14 movement therapists and 2 doctors working in the medical area. The scientific advisory board is set up. Three members are appointed (Professor Nick Ward, University College of London, Great Britain; Professor Gert Kwakkel, VU University Medical Centre in Amsterdam, Netherlands; Professor Jon Krakauer, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, USA).


We are continually searching for highly qualified and motivated personnel for our team. Unsolicited applications are warmly welcomed at all times.
Please send your application to .

Casemanager f/m (100%)

to commence immediately or by agreement

Job description as PDF

Occupational and/or Physiotherapist (f/m)_UAE (100%)

to commence immediately or by agreement

Job description as PDF

Speech therapist (f/m)_CH/UAE (80-100%)

to commence immediately or by agreement

Job description as PDF

Physiotherapist or occupational therapist f/m (100%)

to commence immediately or by agreement

Job description as PDF

Getting here / contact

cereneo Schweiz AG
cereneo International AG
Seestrasse 18
6354 Vitznau

Icon Phone+41 41 399 67 00 (switchboard)
Icon Fax+41 41 399 67 71
Icon E-Mail

Brochure German
Brochure English

The best way to get here is via car: in 40 minutes from Lucerne, approximately 40 minutes from Zurich, 1 hr 40 minutes from Basel, 3 hrs from Milan and 4 hrs from Munich. The closest airport is Zurich (1 hr 10 minutes). For small private aircraft it is recommended to fly to Buochs airfield, which is around 15 minutes away from Vitznau by boat.

It is possible to get here on public transport via train, bus or boat; exact timetables and routes can be found under www.sbb.ch.