Working for a ski company means that familiarisation trips out to resort and the chalets are part and parcel of the job. Perk yes, but absolutely necessary! It is essential for us to know as much as we possibly can about each chalet we sell, to avoid any kind of disappointment once clients reach resort. This time round, James and I jetted off to, well, everywhere. Val d’Isere, followed by Verbier (I wouldn’t recommend that trip, it’s a long way, especially on a hangover!), followed by Les Gets, Morzine and finally Avoriaz. We saw loads of chalets and thought we would share our honest opinions.
Chalet La Rocheure in Val d’Isere is a fantastic looking chalet and I would say a very good quality. The chalet has a great feel to it and has been finished to a high standard. The interior has visible ceiling beams which date back centuries as the owner has used the wood from his distant relative’s barns and farm house. There’s also a nice wellness area.
Chalet Hotel Rosalp in Verbier has an amazing location and the view from the bar is incredible. The hotel itself has a random layout and feels a little dark at times, but the rooms are very spacious and the valley view rooms are definitely worth the additional room supplement. The Verbier ski area is fantastic and it feels well linked, but we did have a ski guide. The off piste in Verbier is incredible and really could test the best of skiers.
The chalets we saw in Avoriaz were the Marie, Les Lauzes, Violette and Perce-Neige and all have true ski in – ski out positions on the mountain. They all are modern feeling chalets with good lounge areas, but the rooms that I saw, were not the most spacious and seating in the lounges seems as if it would be a little tight if the chalets were fully occupied.
Moving to Les Gets, Chalet L’Hermine was a great chalet for 8 guests with a good sized lounge area and dining area – the bedrooms were also a good size. Chalet Chez Rose was one of the smallest and cutest stand alone chalets I have ever seen! Perfect for a family of 4, a bit of a squeeze for 6. It is set alongside La Cognee, which I also loved. A very traditional and cosy Savoyarde chalet, without feeling too small, with evenly sized twin/triple rooms and a bus stop just outside to run you in to town.
We stayed in Chalet Ysopes, which is adjacent to Chalet Johmarons. I was impressed by how spacious and well furnished these chalets were, and only 5 minutes from the town centre. An added bonus was the shared outdoor hot tub. They are located up a fairly steep, but short hill, so the maintenance guys would need to be hands on with the snow shovelling! Also, beware of the shared bathroom between a couple of the rooms – I was unaware of this and had an unfortunate walk in incident on one of the others on the trip…we learned our lesson fairly quickly.
Chalet Monet was the most central chalet that we saw, fantastic location and very well decorated chalet. The dining room and living areas were lovely, with another kids lounge perfect for X-box playing and games. The rooms were nice, although being such a large chalet, at times it felt more like a hotel, not so open plan as the other chalets in resort.
We also saw La Chaumiere chalets; Karine, Martine, Aventine and Justine. I loved these ones, very clean and well furnished with nice spacious living areas. The outdoor hot tub looked very relaxing, and the location was perfect for families, being set back off the main road but close enough to get to ski school. There was also a well equipped nursery and children’s club, and hundreds of well trained nannies milling around.
As a resort, Les Gets is a lot bigger than I had imagined, with some decent bars around. The ski area wasn’t fully open, but the runs down into town looked perfect for beginners and families, as did the resort as a whole.
It was a very informative trip, the highlight being beating James at table football more than once. He knows the football results only too well. And obviously the skiing wasn’t bad either!