Top 10: Luxury ski resorts to experience now
Slay the slopes this season
E n route to the snow this season? So too are fashion's elite, starting with Lebanese fashion designer, Elie Saab, who is set to open a pop-up shop on the slopes of Courcheval in France. Discover nine other must-experience destinations around the world too as Buro 24/7 Middle East locates the ultimate cool winter getaways...
This season Courchevel ranks at the top of the achingly cool climate list, for two reasons. Firstly, Elie Saab is setting up shop in the snow, with a coveted pop-up that will see limited edition ski apparel available from December until April, think coats, capes, hats and jackets. Then, there's Cheval Blanc Courchevel. The LVMH-owned luxury resort is complete with signature chalets, culinary hot spots and the Guerlain-supplied Cheval Blanc Spa.
Located at the centre of the world-class Three Valleys ski area in the French Alps, Meribel Ski Resort is one of the best all-around skiing resorts in the region. The traditional wood-clad, chalet-style resort offers a wide range of perfect skiing and snowboarding terrain, along with one of the busiest resorts in the Alps.
Meribel accommodates skiing intermediates, experts and snowboarders and aside from the obvious outdoor activities, there are a wide variety of must-try French eateries dotted around the resort, as well as an indoor climbing wall and a swimming pool.
Hidden within the Chugach Mountains on Alaska's south central coast, Alyeska is located just 68km south of Anchorage, Alaska in the quiet town of Girdwood. The resort boasts the only four diamond rated hotel in the state, the Alyeska Prince — part of the hotel company, which dominates Japanese ski resorts. Alyeska also is host to the 650m vertical feet of lit night time terrain — one of the biggest night lit vertical ski terrains in the world.
The resort also holds one of the country's most picturesque restaurants, Seven Glaciers, located 2,300 feet above sea level at the top of the cable car.
Situated amidst the Alps of Switzerland is one of the world's most magical snow-clad destinations, Zermatt. The resort is nestled at the foot of one of the world's most renowned peaks, the Matterhorn, and holds a ski area that includes the highest-altitudes pistes in Europe. With divine mountain restaurants and breathtaking views, Zermatt is a must for holiday-goers looking for a luxurious adventure.
The resort even has three inter-linked ski areas: The Sunnegga-Rothorn area, which is ideal for beginners, the neighbouring Riffel-Gornergrat-Hohtalli area, and the summit sector of Stockhorn (3,532m) which is an experts-only zone. There are also over 100 lively apres ski venues in the surrounding area of the resort.
Revelstoke ski resort has become one of newest winter destinations, boasting the longest vertical in North America of 1713m, 3,121 acres of skiable terrain, 9-14 metros of annual snowfall and 65 pistes. This Canadian resort is ideal for intermediate and advanced skiers.
There is also a large choice of post ski options, all nestled in the picturesque town of Revelstoke — a 15 minute drive from the resort — which is filled with local eateries and lounges.
St Anton, Austria
Located in the the Arlberg region of Austria, St Anton Ski Resort is famous for its unique apres ski scene and excellent ski terrain, offering visitors some of the most challenging slopes in the Alps. Renowned for being one of the world's longest established and most historical skiing destinations — St. Anton saw one of the very first cable cars in the Alps installed on the Galzig mountain — making the white wonderland one of the leading ski destinations in the world.
The hotel is situated in a narrow valley close to the Arlberg Pass, in the western most Arlberg region of the Tyrol, and is made up of several suburbs and settlements. Visitors will not be bored with the bustling day time activities in the resort and bustling nightlife in town.
Telluride, Colorado, US
Located in the San Juan Range of the Rocky Mountains in south-west Colorado, Telluride was originally one of the world's richest gold-rush towns, and since opening its ski area in 1972, has turned into a town rich with snow. Remote from any major towns or cities, there are two centres to the resort, both of which offer vistors direct access to the pristine ski areas.
There is even a special beginners area at the Meadows Nursery area close to Mountain Village, while advanced skiers can experience an adrenaline rush blasting off from the plunge chairlift. Alternative activities also include snowboarding, snowmobiling, dog-sledding tours, horseback riding, horse-drawn sleigh rides and ice climbing.
For those non-European skiers, Whistler is the ultimate destination — it's good for beginners, families and non-skiers. A host of Alpine events, including the 2010 Vancouver Winter Games, are also held at the largest ski area in North America. Then there's Whistler-Blackcomb, which is made up of two distinct mountain sectors linked to create a world-class ski zone — skiers can switch slopes from Whistler Mountain to Blackcomb Mountain.
Ranked as North America's number one ski resort, Whistler Village lies at the heart of the resort and provides people with a bustling hub of shops, cafes, 5-star restaurants and apartments.
The ski resort Murren-Schilthorn is the highest-altitude ski region in the Bernese Oberland and gives visitors an impressive experience on the Swiss mountains Eiger, Mönch and Jungfrau. Skiers who visit can enjoy the steep slopes and long downhill runs from the Schilthorn mountain (2973m), the highest peak in the area, which leads down to the family friendly ski village of Mürren. Non-skiers will also be impressed with the 360 degree view at Piz Gloria restaurant on the Schilthorn peak.
Cortina d'Ampezzo, Italy
Known to be one of Italy's most famous and extensive ski towns, the resort staged the Winter Olympics in the 1950s and has remained popular for avid skiers ever since. The beautiful Italian resort Cortina d'Ampezzo sits in Italy's Dolomites UNESCO World Heritage Site, and is Italy's most most stylish skiing hotspot — featuring some of Europe's most spectacular mountain scenery.
With Cortina's skiing grounds split into a number of ski areas, the highest is Tofana, which can be accessed by ski lifts. Aside from skiing, the dining options are also extensive and serve up the best Italian cuisine for miles around.
As it is located so far north, Riksgransen doesn't open until late February, due to the cold and dark weather conditions, however the wait is more than worth it. Riksgransen is 250km north of the Arctic Circle, and was once Sweden's top ski destination, remaining a place on the bucket list for many winter sport enthusiasts.
Throughout the resort there are a handful of choice luxury hotels, including Hotel Riksgransen, which is centrally located only 100 metres from the ski lifts and train station. Riksgransen's ski school is also one of the most highly regarded in the skiing world.
Also don't miss Ralph Lauren's Team USA Winter Olympic uniforms, which are available from December, 2017.