Skiing is all about luxury and spoiling yourself. From champaign lunches to a nighttime soak in the chalet hot tub, it is your duty to document them all and share your experience with your friends.
No mountain holiday would be compleat with the overindulgence of cheese and this comes in many forms. There is the fondue night, the tartiflette on the mountain, the after-dinner cheese board and not forgetting the stunning displays and tasters on offer at the local market.
Top Tip: Fondue tastes better than it looks especially when it a low-resolution camera in a low light restaurant after a few wines!
The Mountain View
On a clear day, it is the summits are where the Alps is at its most spectacular. With views across to other mountains, sweeping valley vistas and endless horizons. Not to mention the untouched snow full of untapped potential.
Top Tip: Never used the panorama setting on your phone? This is the moment.
The Action Shot
Possibly the hardest one to get done. Let’s be honest very few of us are amazing skiers and even few of us have a camera crew follwing us about taking 1000’s of pictures allowing us to pick the best one.
So get your mate to have a go at getting a good shot of you. You will get better results if the photos are being taken closer to the ground.
And if you get a good one it will be your profile picture for many years to come.
The Apres Ski One
This is the one even your non-ski pals will find envious. It can be hard to get right as many apres venues can be a bit dingy. But choose one like the Folie Douce in Meribel and you’re going to get a winning photo every time.
Why the 3 Valleys lift pass is good value for money.
Next winter the 3 Valleys lift pass will cost €306 for an adult for 6 days and is outstanding value for money. There are are a reported 4.5 million skiers that visit The 3 Valleys each year giving the area plenty of funds to reinvest.
The constant investment ensures it remains great value for money and the best place to ski in the world.Find our how The 3 Valleys spend their money and give skiers the best possible experience.
For your money you get 600km of piste to play on and to put that into perspective all of the ski areas in Canada could fit into the 3 Valleys. If you then break that down into Euros per kilometre you get 2.1 km for every Euro you spend on your lift pass. The next best value for money resort is neighbouring La Plagne where you get just 1.5 km per euro.
Despite the vast area, 85% of runs are above the magic 1800m with the highest peak of 3230m in Val Thorens. This impressive altitude guarantees snow and there is an average base of 80cm and annual snowfall of 155cm. All these stats are the reason that the 3 Valleys features in all snow-sure ski area lists.
Snow Making in the Three Valleys
Being British we know the weather can be unpredictable and maybe this has rubbed off on our colleagues in charge of The 3 Valleys ski area and help them come to the decision to invest heavily in snowmaking. There are currently 2200 snow cannons that can make 5,280,000 cubic meters of snow per day across the area.
In Méribel, there is the DC Area park that features big kickers, a half pipe and is flanked by a boarder cross course. You can also find the slightly tamer Moon park in the same valley. Courchevel has a family park that is suitable for all and has an air bag to help you improve your tricks.
Val Thorens has invested in an expert and beginner slopestyle park that is popular with local riders and there is also FIS standard ski cross course. And finally, there is the BK Park in Les Menuires full of rail and bumps for all abilities.
Three Valleys staff
For many business one of the biggest outgoings is the wage bill and the 3 Valleys is no different. The area employs 1200 people just to operate the lifts on top of this there are security staff, pisteurs, resort staff, bus drivers and maintenance teams. If they were on minimum wages the monthly bill just for lifties would be €1,740,000.
How much does The Three Valleys Invest
We often speak to the management directly responsible for the infrastructure and they always talk in big numbers and they know that it is the continual reinvestment and development that keeps people coming back year after year.
Before last season started at least €50m was spent on improvements and new infrastructure. This included 3 new chairs in Val Thorens, a new chair and multiple piste improvements in Courchevel & Méribel, across the board snowpark improvements, indoor picnic areas, family entertainment, night skiing, wifi and selfie machines.
The Three Valleys is environmentally friendly
There is also investment in what you can’t see such as drainage, waste and reducing environmental impact. The resorts of The 3 Valleys come in the top 20 of environmentally friendly ski resorts in Europe and that is down to its investment in renewable energy to power the lifts.
All the resorts are committed to minimising the traffic and reliance of cars in resort which is combated by providing free bus services at an estimated cost of €5m per season.
What else can you get for the money
For €306 euros you can get a weeks lift pass and go skiing in The 3 Valleys or you could get…
1 day at Alton Towers for a family of 4 plus £50 spending money.
9 hours indoor skiing.
8 hours Wakeboarding.
68 bottle of alcohol free red wine.
685 All Butter Croissants from Lidl
So there you have it The 3 Valleys lift pass is great value unless you like croissants more.
Oh and one last thing..
Is it cheaper to do 6 half day passes?
We get asked if there is a cheaper way to buy a 3 valleys lift passes, such as 6 half day passes. If you were to buy 6 half day passes you would, in fact, spend €42 more. A day pass can be bought for €62 and would get you 4.5 ski days for the same cost as a 6 day.
If you want more information an skiing in the 3 Valleys or want to find out about our catered ski chalets then please give us a call on 01273 466 535 or check out our website alpineaction.co.uk.
The London Ski Show has been going for 45 years. The last few have seen some massive changes as it moved to a Battersea Park and is now called the Ski and Snowboard Festival.
There is more than before to see and do and the outside space that hosts the big kicker (Mount Battersea) and aprés stage is the best part of the whole show.
Below is our guide to what to see and what is new…
Dates: Thursday 25th October to Sunday 28th October (times vary)
Location: Battersea Evolution in Battersea Park
Price: Early Bird – £15 Full £25 Concessions £10 – Children £8 – Under 11’s Free
What’s on at the Ski Show
Skiing and Snowboarding
There is more skiing and snowboarding to watch than ever before which is good as that is what the show is all about.
Mount Battersea is back with its pro riders hitting a real snow kicker pulling off some massive tricks. Expect to see some of our Olympic stars like Murray Buchan taking part in the pro rider demo alongside some emerging talent as well as Q & A’s with the stars of Team GB.
The Ski Club of Great Britain will be making the most of the real snow at the foot of Mount Battersea by offering avalanche training sessions before the big air starts.
If you fancy a bit of skiing yourself then there will be an artificial rolling ski slope for you to develop your skills on. Numbers are limited for this but you can book your place online prior to the event.
Kids & Family
As the show is held during half term this year the organisers are making sure there is a tonne of things for kids to get involved in which will mean that you can spend a whole day there.
During the day there is entertainment in The Lodge area with children’s entertainers Tootles & Nibs that includes winter sports-themed games and activities, winter selfie station, arts & crafts and face painting.
There is also ice skating and rock climbing also available as part of the ticket price.
Husky sledging is a new activity at this year’s festival for you to try, details are slim but we guess it will be a sleigh on wheels being towed by the dog around the site.
The show is also introducing a vintage Ferris wheel to the fun. From the top, you will get great views of the park and the Thames.
And the Apres is being ramped up with a headline set from Sunset Sons on Saturday night.
The truth is that the show wouldn’t exist without the “trade show” element and for many people the chance to shop for all things ski related in one place is the reason they attend.
Naturally, there will be oodles of clothing and equipment for sale as well as the obligatory novelty helmet stand.
Since moving from Earls Court the food on offer is mountains better than in previous years with some of the street food being surprisingly tasty and at quite reasonable prices. It could be your first chance of the winter to get some tartiflette.
Don’t miss out on all the free stuff. Get it right and you could restock your stationery cupboard, bag some new sunglasses & get enough sweets to cover the trick or treaters over Halloween.
There are some exciting changes and including 2 chairlifts and a handful of runs all new in Meribel.
In a video released by Meribel Alpina, the company responsible for the lift system and pistes, details of some of the changes for this winter has been revealed.
Legends: New Chairlift
There will be a new faster 6 man detachable chairlift replacing the Plan de l’Homme and the Roc de Fer lifts called Legends. It will run from the Chaudanne area up to the top of the Elements park.
The new lift can move 3600 people an hour. It is 1650m long, carries skiers up to 2017m above sea level over 580 vertical meters. More importantly, the seats are heated and covered!
You will still be able to access the Olympic and Cherferie chair easily so access to Saint-Martin-de-Belleville will not be affected.
Cherferie: Chair Lift relocation
As previously mentioned this lift is easy to access from the Legends chair and is a great link if you want to drop down into Saint-Martin-de-Belleville. And up until now has been a drag lift that many people choose to avoid.
The lift stations won’t move but the route and the method will. When the resort opens in December there will be a brand new that will take just 4 minutes.
Mont Vallon Refurb
There will be a more comfortable journey up to Meribel’s highest peak this winter. The cars are part of the refurb and will have better seating for the long journey up.
New Runs in Meribel
Along with the changes to the lift system on the western slopes above Meribel, there are new additions to the piste map. The connections between the new lifts are improved along with the creation of two new red runs.
There is a new red piste called the Gypaete flanking the existing Choucas blue run that followed the original route of the Cherferie lift.
Close by and located just under the Olympic Express chair is the new red run called Daguet. This piste will start midway down the black Face run, cut under the chairlift and merge into the meeting point of the Gelinotte and Raffort runs that link Meribel Centre and Les Allues respectively.
Location is the key to a beautiful Insta feed and the towns in the 3 Valleys proved that perfect backdrop.
La Tania is an alpine dream. The sunny village is below the tree line and many of the traditional chalets are located in the spruce forest with branches heavy with snow to make the perfect winter wonderland.
Here are some selfie facts: Snow makes you look cool (literally). Snowsports make you look cool. Goggles, hats, and sunnies make you look cool. Ski and snowboard clothing make you look cool. Being on a mountain/chairlift/skis makes you look cool. Being in a ski chalet/mountain restaurant/ski resort makes you look cool. In short a ski trip is cool.
The 3 Valleys is so Instagram perfect it even provides selfie spots!
Instagram your 3 Valleys Chalet
All our chalets are Instagram compatible. Some are postcard perfect with rooms that ooze alpine style. While others have incredible views to post your morning wake up.
And don’t forget the mountain hot tub update!
Find out why is breakfast important when you go skiing or snowboarding?
OK we admit it, we put our hands up – We are feeders. We can’t help it though, food is important, it fuels us, it can affect our mood and it also brings enormous pleasure. It is for these three reasons that we make sure we put on a seriously good breakfast.
When you head out for a day’s skiing you need to be ready for action, full of energy, in a great mood and you also need to feel like you are on holiday.
A hassle-free breakfast
Before we look into the scientific benefits of having breakfast before heading out to go skiing lets quickly consider one massive benefit that goes unnoticed. Getting ready to skiing, for some reason, is the most demanding part of a ski holiday.
Where are your gloves? Have you packed your ski pass? How many layers do you need to wear? So having breakfast ready for you is helpful, but not quite as helpful as not having to clear it up.
Leaving you to worry about what colour lenses to put in your goggles. If you have children you will need little imagination to realise how big a difference only having to eat breakfast makes.
Benefits of a good breakfast are huge, especially when you are heading out for a long day of extreme sports. Food is fuel, and we need it to function. In the morning your body has slowed itself down because it hasn’t eaten for a while, so tucking into breakfast helps wake you up. It also helps you function and run better for the rest of the day.
The chances are that when you are in the Alps, you will eat a lot of bread, cheese and ham. All these will be available at breakfast time in our chalets, but we also realise that you need a balanced diet. We know that you won’t get all the energy you need from those three food items.
What we serve
That is why in the morning we offer you a selection of cereals, a cooked breakfast, lots of fruit juice and fruit. Not to mention the yogurt and endless tea and coffee.
We also understand that food can affect your mood that is why our breakfasts are full of quality produce, with enough to fill even the largest appetite. One of the worst things is heading to the slopes in a bit of a grump.
It spoils your day and the people who have to share a lift with you. So make sure you take full advantage of our selection at breakfast time. It is also proven that missing breakfast makes you grouchy for the rest of the day.
Eggs for breakfast
Another way that we can make you happy is by allowing you to be fussy. We believe that breakfast time is a very personal meal. Everyone likes it a different way, especially when it comes to eggs.
To make sure you get it how you like we let you tell us how you want them cooked. Boiled, fried, poached scrambled, we can do it however you like
What we are trying to say is that we are on hand to set you up for the fun day of skiing that you have come on holiday for. A days skiing starts around the table and that helps keep you going until lunch.
The other perks are that you get to pick the best room, have the final say and know you won’t end up in a rubbish resort.
Step 4 – Picking your ski holiday
Picking your chalet is the next step and it is this point when many factors will come into play such as size, price and location.
At this stage, you might find yourself with a few options. In our experience as a group leader, you will find it easier if you decide on the best couple of options and pitch it to the group.
You should also be prepared to compromise. If you are a really big group you may struggle to discover a chalet that you will all fit into so you may need to look at ski properties next door to each other.
Step 5 – Confirming your ski holiday
Getting a deposit from everyone is a big challenge and the last big hurdle. You should make sure that everyone is ready to book and can send the deposit to you immediately.
As a rule, most chalet companies will hold a chalet for a week if you are booking early. This will give you time to decide and get the deposits collected.
If you are booking near or during the season you may only get a few days.
Payment is the next step. If you don’t want to get involved in collecting money (and we wouldn’t blame you) then we can help as will collect all the individual balance payments.
Then all that is left for you to do is enjoy your holiday in the company of your friends and family.
Give us a call to find out which chalets in Meribel and La Tania would suit your group. Phone the team on 01273 466535.
Booking your ski holiday early is a good idea – Here are a few reasons why
If you enjoyed your last ski trip you probably can’t wait until the next one which is a great reason to book your next one early. But there are other benefits to sorting your ski holiday out in advance.
Meribel is a unique ski resort with a huge variety of locations and various levels of accommodation. Booking early will mean you get the best chalet in the best location for the best price.
As a result of the 2017/18 winters immense snowfall, there is a reported 34% increase in bookings for the 18/19 season.
Here are few more perks of booking your ski holiday early.
If you are a planning a ski trip at Christmas, New Year, February Half Term or Easter you should think about securing your prefered accommodation early.
These are popular dates to go skiing in Meribel and the chalets can get booked up early.
By the end of April, we are usually 65% booked with returning guest for the next season on these dates.
If there is a large group of you going skiing then getting in early will give you more chalet options to choose from and make sure your get the one you wan’t.
As the ski season gets closer chalets start to get booked and individual rooms taken up making it harder to fit large parties into one chalet.
There are always great offers on at the start of the season from free lift passes to group discounts.
Booking early doesn’t mean you have to pay upfront unlike if you wait until the season starts. We require a deposit and then the final balance is due 10 weeks before your departure.
This gives you plenty of time to save up or pay for the trip in instalments.
The best price is often offered at the end of the season for next winter as demand can often push prices up.
You should always consider where you want to fly from when booking a ski trip early.
A tour operator may have limited numbers of flights from your prefered departure point. Or if you are planning to arrange your own transport you will get better value for money by booking your flights early.
If you are planning to book your holiday to Meribel or La Tania early – Give us a call tel: +44(0) 1273 466 535 and we will find the best trip for you.
A lot has changed in skiing over the 25 years we have been making skiing holidays in the 3 Valleys!
Alpine Action started providing catered ski holidays to the Three Valleys in 1993 and over those 25 years the world of skiing has changed a lot. We thought we would take a look at some of the things that have fallen by the wayside since Dennis welcomed our fisrts guests back in the 90’s.
1. Straight Skis
It is hard to believe but people were still predominantly using straight skis in the early 90’s and it wasn’t 1993 that carving skis were put on mass sale by Elan skis.
2. Chalet Maids
1000’s of people are employed each year across the Alps each year as chalet hosts to work in chalets and look after guests. It is hard to pin point exactly when it stopped but female staff were originally referred to as chalet maids. We are glad that it moved on.
3. Making Cow Noises in Cable Cars
Back in the late 90’s early 00’s it wasn’t uncommon for a busy ride up the Saulire cable car to be accompanied by a chorus of moo’s created by the passengers, this was sketch recreated in crowded téléfériques around the world. It seems that this comedy routine has faded and is no longer performed but like all comedy acts it could well make a comeback.
4.Rear Entry Boots
In the 90’s the design race of the ski boot was coming to an end. At one point the rear-entry boot seemed to be winning with its comfort and how easy they were to put on. In the end, performance won and we all switched to the more responsive front entry boot… well except that mate of your dad who you only ever meet on the annual family ski trip.
OK so we still see them now but they now are no longer a fashion statement and more of a sign that you are incompetent at applying sun cream.
Ski hire had a bad reputation for years. Do you remember how you feared turning up to the hire shop knowing that you would be presented with 3 year old boots and skis with zero edges? Today you can be confident that you will receive comfy fitting boots with a set of sticks that are new that season and have been serviced in-between customers.
One of skiing’s greatest losses was the unironic wearing of the all-in-one. Not only were they warm and comfy they all so came in such an array of bad designs guaranteed to offend the eyes.
9. The division between skiers and snowboarders
It could be one of the worlds most pointless feuds that for us, reached a crescendo when each party tried to blame each other for the creation of moguls. Fortunately we have moved on and share the mountain in relative harmony and leave pointless feuding to the likes of Kim Kardashian & Taylor Swift.
10. Spag Bol AKA Terrible Chalet Food
When you have been out in the mountain air all day you look forward to dinner. These days you will return to the chalet and be fed a 4-course meal designed by experienced chefs accompanied with a selection of wines. Long ago it was deemed acceptable to plonk down a pan of spaghetti bolognese and a bowl of angel delight!
11. The Lift Pass Holder
The fumble fumble of the old photo pass attached to a mini retractable washing line has been replaced by the efficient beep beep clunk of the modern electronic pass that can remain in your pocket. It has also helped reduce queuing time.
12. Novelty Hats
This may depend on your definition of novelty. We are mainly talking about the long and spikey hats made from synthetic fleece and came in a variety of horrendous colours.
13. Long Drag Lifts
There is still a place for the humble button lift. However, the place isn’t over 1ooo vertical meters of tough, steep, icy terrain. Fortunately, they have stopped being installed and most are slowly being replaced. Goodbye thigh burn.
14. Knees together
As the years have gone by the skier’s stance has got wider. At one point a requirement to become a ski instructor was to prove yourself by skiing with a hanky held between the knees. A wider more balanced stance has now been adopted.
15. Head Bands
Since we started operating another type of headwear has disappeared from the slopes, the headband. Once they were the height of fashion driven by floppy hairstyles and non-breathable clothing. Now they have been resigned to the poubelle.
16. The Jump
For 4 years this has been one of our favourite programs on TV. The show featured celebrities learning a variety of snow sports, ski jumping and generally getting injured. Recently Channel 4 announced it was resting the show and we all know what happens when we sit down.
17. UK Ski Shows
There was a time when it felt like there was a ski show in every city from Glasgow to Brighton with Birmingham in-between. This year there is just one survivor left, The London Ski Show.
18. Smoking in Bar
Of course, this isn’t just a ski thing but it always seemed that even more smoking was done in the bars of ski resorts as well as the lifts and shuttle buses.
19. The Courchevel Eggs
For a while it felt like the out dated but iconic egg looking lifts of Courchevel from Le Paraz would never be replaced. But then they were and no one has missed them since!
Seriously when was the last time you saw someone on one except in a novelty competition?
21. Lack of UK Success on snow in the Winter Olympics
In 2014 Jenny Jones took bronze in the Snowboard Slopestyle comp, securing the UK’s first Winter Olympic Medal. Since then a large amount of funding has been pumped into the GB ski and board team and there are high hopes for the 2018 games.
22. Bunny Ears
Putting skis poles to your head is over as people realise it is no longer an efficient way of attracting attention on the slopes or looking cool in holiday snaps!
23. Being Disconnected
Along with Cornwall, the mountains used to be one of the few places left in the world where a mobile phone signal was virtually impossible to get. Today people are on their phones even while skiing down the mountain.
24. Slope Side Photographers
The upside to everyone having a smart phone in their pocket is that we no longer get hassled by photographers when we get off the lift or while skiing down the easy green into the resort.
25. Slopes Without Snow
Snow wasn’t always guaranteed. With the development and investment of snow making facilities, mega resorts like The 3 Valleys can guarantee there will be snow cover on 80% of the slopes for the entire season!
To book a ski holiday with us or find more about our service got to our website.
There are some people that have never been to Méribel, there are many that just miss being there and there are the obsessed that just love Méribel so much that they can’t get enough of it. To help all these people out we have put together a virtual tour of Méribel using a collection of videos. Hopefully it will help the people that have never been want to come, those that miss it feel like they are back there and those that love Méribel can get quick top up.