Known by many as the “Diamond of the Alps”, Obergurgl is a stunning traditional Austrian mountain resort. As a very snow sure resort with a huge variety of runs as well as an abundance of things to do other than ski, Obergurgl will satisfy the non-skiers as well as every standard of skier, making it the perfect destination for a luxury ski holiday.
The Chalet, at 11° East is Obergurgl’s first and only boutique chalet, nestled right on the nursery piste with stunning views. The unrivalled service, alongside the luxurious interior that captures the flavour of a traditional Austrian chalet, will ensure that your time off the mountain will be every bit as enjoyable as that spent skiing!
If you’re still undecided about where to go this season, we caught up with the team at The Chalet, at 11º East, to share their views on why a luxury chalet holiday in Obergurgl should be on your radar…
How would you describe the skiing in Obergurgl and who is it good for?
Obergurgl has something for everyone; the beginner slopes are right outside The Chalet, at 11º East’s window and the main lift is just a minutes’ walk away. Because it is more of a family resort, the slopes are a pleasure to be on. They are beautifully groomed, wide and interesting with great views, plenty of blues, reds and some blacks. Several allow for a lovely long ski from the very top to the valley without stopping.
The layout of the resort, being twinned with Hochgurgl, means you never get bored and can ski different areas in the morning and afternoon. The resort is also known for its challenging off piste but it’s best to book in with a local ski guide. The lift pass now covers Obergurgl, Hochgurgl and nearby Soelden, which offers a completely different experience and is well worth the trip if you are looking for more of an adventure during your week in Obergurgl. The 4 fun parks should also keep most trendy skiers and boarders happy!
Tell us a bit more about the amazing snow record and the early and late conditions that Obergurgl is famed for…
Obergurgl has wonderful early and late season skiing with top to bottom skiing possible when many other famous resorts are offering grass skiing. The season runs from mid-November to early May and The Chalet, at 11º East’s team usually ski every day of the season to test the conditions out!
What are your favourite ski runs in the area?
All the runs in Obergurgl are great fun but The Chalet, at 11º East’s team are rather partial to warming up on Piste 16 off the Steinmann lift or on the famous T-Bar in Festkogel, followed by a blast down 12 which leads to the horizontal bubble going to Hochgurgl.
In Hochgurgl, a little-known favourite is the number 32, which few other than the locals have discovered, so it’s a quiet backwater perfect for some stylish skiing and can be followed by a steep ski down from the Schermerbahn on 28 or from the Top Mountain Star (no. 27). One can ski from above 3,000m all the way down to the valley of Pill/ Untergurgl without stopping, a change in height of 1200m.
Not to be missed is the piste favoured by the US Ski Team for their training – this is underneath the new Kirchenkar gondola. The team are excited to try out the new pistes and super-fast gondola built during the summer which will rise to over 3,000m above Hochgurgl.
What would you recommend for non-skiers in Obergurgl?
Obergurgl is the perfect resort for non-skiers as it is very easy to meet the skiers in the group at a wide range of venues on the mountain, either by foot or gondola. There are well prepared walking tracks along the river, one of our favourites being the walk right outside The Chalet, at 11º East in the centre of the resort, down to Pill/Untergurgl or in the other direction up to the Rotmoos Waterfall. Some of the walks can be combined with a bubble ride to remote mountain huts or to explore nearby Hochgurgl.
The active ones could try snowshoeing (footwear that resembles a tennis racket!), cross country, indoor golf, bowling, spa days, ice skating, curling or horse riding (Obergurgl boasts a super modern indoor glass riding arena with lessons on the pretty Haflinger horses). Besides this we highly recommend a trip to the city of Innsbruck to see the Christmas market, the Bergisel Ski Jump or the many churches and historic sites. Set amidst the mountains, Innsbruck is one of the prettiest old towns in Europe. For those who need a day off from skiing, all will enjoy the facilities at the Aqua Dome in nearby Längenfeld with its outdoor thermal baths.
Where are the hot spots to enjoy varied cuisine in Obergurgl?
Recently rebuilt is the iconic Schönwies Hut (Schönwieshütte), located in the middle of nowhere and a great lunch spot, also accessible to non-skiers. Very friendly service and best of all you get to ski behind a Ski-Doo to get there!
At the top of the mountain we like the typically Austrian interior of the Hohe Mut Alm and their warming local cuisine. A chalet favourite is the smoked salmon served on a bed of Rösti with sour cream.
There is always a warm welcome at the Neder Hut (Nederhütte) on the Gaisberg, super fast service, very friendly atmosphere and efficient staff. People rave about the ribs but if you haven’t tried Kaiserschmarrn and chocolate sauce, why not?! You haven’t lived!
Give us the low down as to where we should head for an après ski party…
Obergurgl is famed for on mountain après ski at the Neder Hut (Nederhütte). Expect great music, dancing on the tables in your ski boots and a Ski-Doo to take you down the piste if you are too inebriated to safely navigate the floodlit run! The food and drink are great too. Come the warmer weather, the band moves outside and the atmosphere is more convivial with an iced glass of rosé rather than winters local tipple of a hot gluehwein.
Tuesday’s are party night in Obergurgl and the ski instructor night show and night skiing are followed by a pit stop in the Ice-berg Sportsbar alongside the piste and on to the Josl nightclub. The Picnic is a good bet for a pizza en route.
What do you feel makes The Chalet, at 11° East stand out from its competition?
The Chalet, at 11º East is Obergurgl’s only boutique ski chalet and the staff are on a mission to provide fantastic levels of customer service. So, whether your kids want to stir the cake, learn how to make mocktails, need some tips on where to sledge, or you’ve arrived home exhausted and just want someone to help take your boots off, we try to go the extra mile!
A huge thank you to The Chalet, at 11º East’s team for giving us such a fantastic insight into why Obergurgl is a great destination for a luxury ski holiday!
If you’d like to speak to one of our Ski Specialists about a ski holiday to Obergurgl or would like some more information on The Chalet, at 11º East, please do not hesitate to drop us an email or give us a call on +44 (0)1202 203650.