Learning to ski is as easy as deciding you want to. It doesn’t have to be a pain although you will have to accept that you will most likely spend a few moments on the snow rather than gliding gracefully over it. All you have to do is find a well-groomed slope, a well-groomed ski instructor and you’ll be sliding down a slippery slope before you know it.
What more glamorous or beautiful place to learn to ski than in the French Alps? The French know how to do everything with style and skiing is no exception. They are not going to question that you want to end every day sipping champagne. Brigitte Bardot said, “Champagne is the one thing that gives me zest when I feel tired” and it is normal to feel a little tired after a day skiing.
And learning to ski gives you every excuse to do a little shopping to make sure have nice warm clothes that look good and fit well. And French resorts are the perfect place to do that shopping. If you are going to be seen falling over make sure you look good doing it. You don’t many reasons to enjoy a luxury skiing holiday.
So let’s have a look at a few French resorts that won’t fail to charm you.
Courchevel is second to none when it comes to glamour and glitz with Michelin-starred restaurants for the best of après ski, complete with a celebrity or two. There are luxurious chalets and hotels to suit the deepest pocket.
However since you are also there to learn ski, Courchevel 1850 also has some of the best groomed slopes in Europe, maybe the world. There are multitudes of super efficient lifts to cover one of the world’s largest ski areas known as Les Trois Valleés. The facilities for beginners are second to none with easy lifts. (You will learn as improve, that all lifts are not created equal. When you are learning – the easier the better.)
In Courchevel you will also find highly qualified ski instructors from all over the world who can tell you to “Benz zee knees” in a multitude of languages. They still may speak English with a charming foreign accent though. Ski instructors are always great role models to make skiing look so easy, while you snow plough with difficulty. They usually have a good skiing story to share from their experiences around the world. Who knows? You might feature as a character in their next one.
Another gorgeous resort Megève began as the vision of Baroness Noémie de Rothschild who early last century transformed the Savoyard farming village into the chic holiday resort it is now. Rivaling Switzerland’s St Moritz, it now boasts multiples of Michelin starred eateries and five-star hotels and some of the world’s best mountain spas. Relaxation après ski is not be a problem in Megève.
The slopes and well-groomed tree lined pistes make learning fun as well as picturesque. The town itself has retained its natural charm but is filled with quality shops and restaurants serving delicious treats. You will find great ski schools just waiting to kit you out for the slopes and get you curving down the slopes.
Tignes is one of the highest ski areas in the French Alps so consider riding the highest lift to the top of La Grande Motte glacier at 3,455m for the view alone. If you haven’t got the skills you can take in the sights and rid the lift back down again. It will give you goals to aim far as you snow plough down the learner’s slopes.
Tignes village is at 2,100m so this area is also one of the most consistent for snow cover, almost all year round. If you have to make holiday plans months ahead, you can be sure of good snow regardless of the season snow fall.
So there you have some of the best resorts in the French Alps where you can have a great holiday and learn to ski in style. The facilities, the snow piste, the ski schools are second to none in the world. What’s more you get to enjoy the luxury of French cuisine and Gallic charm every day après ski. Start planning some snow time now.
Note: This is a guest post by Tim Baker