As controversial as this may sound, skiing doesn’t have to be everything. Cruising the slopes is obviously amazing – but it’s not the be all and end all when it comes to playtime in the peaks. A ski season is an all-singing, all-dancing winter experience.
Iona is a Senior Marketing Executive for Crystal Ski Holidays and has worked as a Resort Rep in Avoriaz.
Want to stay in the snow? You can jump on a toboggan, ski-doo, husky-pulled sled and loads more. Would you rather warm up? Loads of ski resorts have great spas – treat yourself on your day off and pretend you’re living the high life. Kicking back in a hot tub or loosening up with a massage will mean you’re on top form to hit the hill again the next day.
If you’re similar to me, eating is definitely classed as fun and, boy, do ski resorts deliver. From the cheesy goodness in France’s tartiflette to the carby warmth of Austria’s tiroler gröstl, food is generally scrumptious in the peaks. And don’t give me that ‘diet’ nonsense, on the slopes you’re burning calories like they’re going out of fashion so dig in.
Seasonnaire Iona – Avoriaz Resort Rep
Most importantly – especially for those who like a boogie – is après-ski. Directly translating as ‘after ski’, this basically involves piling off the piste and into the pub. But après – to it’s friends – is so much more than that. This is an art that you can’t learn in ski school.
Each mountain has its own take on après, here are a couple of my faves.
You can’t mention partying on the piste without a nod to the Folie Douce festivities in France. These are larger than life bars on the slopes with a colourful team of dancers, DJs and musicians. Spraying champagne, dancing on tables and saxophone solos are everyday occurrences.
La Folie Douce | Val d’Isère
In Austria, a genius combination of oompah music, Europop tunes and steins make it arguably the best place to party. The warm Austrian spirit will keep a smile on your face from dawn ’til last orders.
And, if you enjoy an evening that’s more wine bars and crackling fires then the mountains deliver that too – there are loads of cosy nooks to discover. The main thing is, it’s your season so après-ski can be whatever you want it to be. If it’s sipping a hot chocolate on the apartment balcony reading your book then, kick back. If it’s throwing back jägerbombs and dancing ’til dawn in fancy dress. You do you and let the haters eat yellow snow.
The mountains are about enjoying yourself and getting more winter – whatever that looks like.