WEsayThis glitzy and glamorous resort is the playground for the rich and famous. Not a resort for bargain hunters but definitely worth the money if you've got it.
Courchevel has the reputation of being the world’s best ski resort and is undoubtedly the chicest in France. The resort is split into four quite separate villages at different altitudes and between them they offer something for everyone. They are brilliantly linked both to each other and to the whole of the Trois Vallees area, which includes the resorts of Val Thorens and Meribel. The scenery here is beautiful and the pistes are immaculate.
The skiing is truly outstanding and on an incredible scale with over 600km of piste in the Trois Vallees area. From 1850 the pistes and gondolas spread out in all directions providing lots of picturesque, gentle skiing for beginners or those who just want to take it easy. For a more vertical challenge experts can head up to the highest point Souliere with the infamous Couloirs. Only the grand couloir remains a marked piste, but it is something of a rite of passage for all good skiers and is much trickier than it looks.
Courchevel is just as entertaining for non-skiers with swimming, ice-skating, bowling, climbing, snow-mobiling, paragliding, a 2km sledge run from 1850 down to 1550 and 20km of groomed hiking trails. Or alternatively flex your credit card and hit the plethora of shops.
Courchevel 1850 is probably the most prestigious resort in France. The jet-set, elite and rich all flock to it, drawn in by the unrivalled accommodation and services in the world’s biggest ski-area. At this level there is fantastic skiing for every level of skier within easy reach and it is especially convenient for beginner, with the area’s best nursery slopes close by. The nightlife at 1850 is as vibrant as it comes and puts the rest of the resort in the shade. Gourmands will also be staisfied with a vast number of excellent restaurants, including two that have 4 Michelin stars between them. 1850 is definitely for those who prefer the finer things in life.
New for 2016/17
Further major investments in snowmaking are being made. The already impressive children s village is being further developed. As part of the Handiski scheme to make snowsports accessible to disabled people, a dedicated teaching area will be opened at Pralong, above 1850, with 12 specially qualified instructors. Work has started on erection of a replacement for the Arondiaz gondola out of 1650 (Moriond), but it won t be completed until next winter.
New for 2015/16
The much anticipated leisure pool and wellness complex, Aquamotion, opened in the valley between 1550 (Courchevel Village) and 1650 (Courchevel Moriond) and it is very impressive, with a wide range of watery options. It will eventually be linked
New for 2014/15
A six-pack replaced the adjacent Aiguille du Fruit and Gravelles chairs at Praméruel between 1650 and 1850. The ancient Forêt gondola from Le Praz was replaced by a six-pack. The Park City run has been reshaped as a blue.
New for 2013/14
There were major changes above La Tania: a long six-pack was built from below mid-mountain to the top, replacing two draglifts, one of which was moved down the hill to become the Stade drag; the Col de la Loze and Crêtes chairs were removed. A new mountain restaurant, the Cave des Creux, opened above the altiport. A new 5-star hotel, the Apogée, opened in the Jardin Alpin. Various runs were re- classified notably, Creux and Lac Creux from red to blue.
New for 2012/13
At 1850, the Biollay quad was replaced by a six-pack, increasing capacity by around a third.
- Extensive, varied slopes that many visitors dont bother with
- The rest of the Trois Vallées boasts Impressive snowmaking and piste grooming, and a decent lift system
- Partly wooded setting means you have options in bad weather
- Choice of four very different villages Some great restaurants and top-notch hotels and plenty of reasonable options in lower villages