With one of the longest ski seasons in the Alps, some of the best après-ski in France and a wide range of accommodation to suit all tastes – Val d’Isère is truly the perfect ski holiday destination. We’ve got first-hand advice in this resort guide for everything you need to know for your next luxury ski holiday in Val d’Isère.
Chalet Le Chardon is undoubtedly one of the most desirable and exclusive ski chalets in Val d’Isère. Resting elegantly on the side of the Solaise Mountain, it’s a haven for keen skiers of all abilities. Each of its 10 en-suite bedrooms has floor to ceiling windows offering uninterrupted views up the Manchet Valley and Vanoise National Park.
We caught up with the team at Chalet Le Chardon to ask them why they think you should book a luxury ski holiday to Val d’Isère.
There are so many popular ski resorts in France, what makes a ski holiday to Val d’Isère stand out?
Val d’Isère is one of the first resorts to open and one of last to shut, allowing for 156 days of amazing skiing! There are 300km of beautiful runs to choose from in the Val d’Isère and Tignes ski area, ensuring even the most advanced skiers won’t get bored on their winter break.
With a reputation as one of the liveliest resorts in the Alps, the après-ski in Val d’Isère is arguably the best on the mountain, with La Folie Douce and Cocorico starting the party around 3pm every day. However, the town also has an abundance of vibrant bars in which to enjoy a good après-ski session! There really is something for everyone in Val d’Isère, from the huge variety of restaurants to the range of activities for non-skiers, everyone is sure to have an unforgettable ski holiday!
What are the ski runs like in Val d’Isère ?
What we love about Val d’Isère is that the ski area can be enjoyed by all abilities and ages. With the revamp of Solaise which can be reached by the new Solaise Gondola, all levels of skier can access and enjoy the mountain with some of the friendliest high altitude beginner slopes in France.
Most intermediate skiers head for the Bellevarde side because it gives access to the runs in Tignes and offers so many lovely runs. Confident skiers must try the World Cup Downhill “OK” run which drops from the top of Bellevarde at 2,827m to La Daille at 1,785m and is a fast rolling run, perfect for thrill seekers!
With stunning views and tree-lined sections, the Mangard run in Le Fornet is a lovely blue run that is great for all the family, especially in the morning when the snow is fresh. Halfway along the descent is L’Edelweiss, a lovely mountain restaurant that is the perfect place to stop for a delicious lunch whilst enjoying the breathtaking views.
What activities would you recommend for groups with non-skiers?
There are so many fun activities in Val d’Isère to keep the non-skiers entertained.
- Snowshoeing is a great way to discover a new freedom as you explore a whole variety of mountain trails and take in the spectacular scenery around you.
- The Aquasportif Centre is home to swimming pools, spas, indoor football centres and a whole host more – perfect for those looking for a more leisurely activity.
- A husky-sledge ride is an exhilarating way to see the stunning scenery in Val d’Isère. You can be whisked away up the Manchet Valley in your very own sled led by a pack of beautiful huskies.
These are just some of the activities that non-skiers can do in Val d’Isère, there are so many more that a non-skier holiday experience might just make the skiers jealous!
Which restaurants are a must when visiting Val d’Isère?
L’Atelier d’Edmond is a 2 star Michelin restaurant that serves delicious French cuisine in a nostalgic, rustic old-style chalet. If you want fine dining in a charming ambience, then you must visit this wonderful restaurant either for a hearty lunch on the terrace overlooking the picturesque village of Le Fornet, or for an unforgettable evening meal. The L’Atelier d’Edmond is at the bottom of the Fornet Pissaillas ski runs, 2km from the Val d’Isère exit, going towards the Col de l’Iseran.
La Mourra restaurant is set in a 5* hotel located in the heart of Val d’Isère. The evening menu is a wonderful fusion of Japanese and French classics that will be sure to tantalise your taste buds. The setting is stylish yet relaxed and with a bar designed to mimic the mountain outside, you will really feel like you’re in an alpine retreat.
Le Panoramic is a unique restaurant at 3,032 metres altitude on the Grande Motte glacier in Tignes. Enjoy a gourmet lunch special whilst soaking up the breathtaking 360° panoramic view. Booking is highly recommended as this is a very popular lunch spot!
Awarded the title of “Best Mountain Restaurant” at the European Snow Awards in 2015, Le Signal is a must on your ski holiday to Val d’Isère! With a less formal self service room offering a good variety of lunch and a restaurant that serves traditional French cuisine, there is something for everyone.
What’s new in Val d’Isère for 2018/2019?
A 4-seater gondola in La Daille that has been running for 52 years, has been replaced by a new 10-seater gondola with wi-fi and heated seats. It will only take four and a half minutes to reach the top, where La Folie Douce will be waiting!
Advanced skiers will be pleased to know that after a 6 year closure, the iconic Teleski des 3000 will re-open. The drag lift transports skiers to the Leissieres ridge that separates the Solaise and the Fornet ski area and with an extreme 76% slope, it is only recommended for accomplished skiers.
After a long day skiing, everyone deserves a well-earned drink! What are the best bars for après-ski?
Whether you want to watch a live band over a beer or dance on the tables with a bottle of bubbly, Val d’Isère nightlife & après-ski hits the spot.
- La Folie Douce must be the first pit stop on your après afternoon. Ski here to enjoy some fantastic live entertainment and of course, some dancing on the tables in your ski boots!
- Cocorico is fast becoming the liveliest bar on the slopes. It’s home to some of the best live bands in the Alps and located in the centre of town, it’s hard to beat.
- Le Coin des Amis is a place with a bit more local charm and atmosphere. This is the perfect place to unwind after a day on the slopes… and is favourite with the locals, it’s said to serve the best Génépi in town!
Why are the Le Chardon chalets the perfect place to stay?
Guests will have an unrivalled view of the Manchet Valley that they can enjoy with a glass of bubbly in hand. With a spectacular view, comes a spectacular location. The chalets are right next to the slopes and with the resort chauffeur service, you will be dropped off directly at the Bellevarde/Solaise lift hub and picked up again at the end of the day. You can also use this service if you fancy setting off from a different area one day or if your legs are a little wobbly after some après-ski!
From the moment you wake up, to the moment your head hits the pillow, our extraordinary team at Chalet Le Chardon will take care of every little detail. Expect home from home elegance in a stunning location with fine food, wine and caring, generous and personal staff to look after your every need. When it comes to ski chalets in Val d’Isère, we promise you the experience of a lifetime.
Thank you to the wonderful team at Chalet Le Chardon for showing us why Val d’Isère is one of the best ski resorts in Europe to take a luxury ski holiday!
If you’d like to speak to one of our Ski Specialists about a luxury ski holiday to Val d’Isère or would like some more information on Chalet Le Chardon, please do not hesitate to drop us an email or give us a call on +44 (0)1202 203650.