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Swiss dentist to the stars dies in Lausanne at 100

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Swiss dentist to the stars dies in Lausanne at 100
Elizabeth Taylor flashing a whiter-than-white smile. Photo: AFP
21:05 CET+01:00
A Swiss dentist famous for treating movie stars from Charlie Chaplin to Elizabeth Taylor and other international celebrities has died at the age of 100.

Charles F. Vallotton died in his Lausanne home on Sunday, his family announced in a statement issued on Wednesday.

Vallotton, known to be extremely discreet, contributed over the past century to making the Vaud capital internationally known as a medical centre, the ATS news agency said in a report citing the family’s announcement.

He was known for pioneering practices of dentistry in Switzerland, such as treating patients while they were lying down and offering the services of a hygienist.

And Vallotton was renowned for capping the teeth in many a Hollywood smile.

His list of movie star patients included Audrey Hepburn, Yul Brynner, Gina Lollobrigida, Anita Ekberg and James Mason, as well as Chaplin and Taylor.

He also tended the ivories of Coco Chanel, the French fashion designer and founder of the Chanel brand, with whom he was a friend and confidante, his family said.

Vallotton’s fame spread beyond Hollywood and members of the royal families of Spain, Portugal and Romania, all sat in the dentist’s chair at his practice off Lausanne’s Place Saint François.

 Industrialists such as Italy's Giovanni Agnelli, of Fiat fame, American oil magnate John Rockefeller Jr., members of the Rothschild banking dynasty and even aviator Charles Lindbergh sought his services for their pearly whites.

The son of a Geneva customs agent, he also looked after the cavities and bicuspids of less savoury characters, such as Juan Vicente Gomez, the former dictator of Venezuela, and Simon Patino, the Bolivian “tin king”, who paid visits to Lausanne.

A memorial service is set for Friday at the Centre funéraire de Montjoie in Lausanne at 4pm.

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