When you book your winter ski holiday, what are the most important elements you consider when choosing a resort? Snow record, altitude, size of ski area, lively resort? All of these are important of course, but there’s one other factor that we all find essential in our perfect ski resort. It’s the reason that the phrase ‘ski-in ski-out’ pulls up over 744 million results on Google. Convenience!
No-one wants to find their perfect ski chalet, only to arrive and realise it’s miles from the nearest lift and requires a lengthy walk with skis in hand, or a cramped shuttle bus journey, just to get to the slopes. This winter, if you’re looking for the most convenient ski resort, in addition to a fantastic ski area, you can’t go wrong with Les Menuires.
Les Menuires occupies a privileged position in the heart of the 3 Vallées ski area, the world’s largest. It’s truly an epic playground for snow sports, with 600km of linked ski runs, unlimited off piste opportunity and a range of snow parks and fun slopes.
Set in the Belleville Valley, Les Menuires links the resorts of Meribel and Val Thorens via the Mont de la Chambre, and as such, is a fantastic place to stay to explore the entire area. Beginners and younger skiers will enjoy the varied learner slopes surrounding the resort, while more advanced skiers can easily get their miles in with quick connections to the area’s plentiful slopes.
You’re able to ski hard here all season long too, so you won’t need to spend the weeks leading up to your Easter ski break excessively doing your living room snow dances! Thanks to its impressively high altitude, the 3 Vallées is one of Europe’s most snow-sure areas, reflected in the ‘Snow Guarantee’ on offer in Les Menuires. The village is at 1850m, with 45% of pistes covered by snow cannons. Plus, with Europe’s highest ski resort, Val Thorens, just up the road, there’s no surprise that this area boasts one of the longest seasons in the Alps.
While you may associate holidays in the 3 Vallées with larger resorts such as Val Thorens, Meribel or Courchevel, we have found that the smaller resorts in the area often provide the better experience when it comes to truly enjoying this awesome ski area. Removed somewhat from the crowds and the craziness of the more popular resorts, these are spots where you can enjoy a more relaxing, peaceful ski break, whilst enjoying the same slopes for a much more affordable price.
Resorts such as Les Menuires offer more character, ambience and charm and as such, are perfect spots for families, romantic getaways and groups that aren’t looking for the biggest parties in town!
Due to the highly convenient accommodation on offer here and the wide variety of beginner slopes, Les Menuires is renowned a fantastic choice for families and beginner skiers, allowing all guests to experience the majesty of the 3 Vallées in the most convenient way.
It’s one of a handful of resorts to have been awarded the ‘Family Plus’ award, a national recognition that it is one of a few French resorts to provide the best quality family offerings. With a number of fun ski zones, beginner villages, kids clubs and free lift passes for under 5s, it’s unsurprising that so many parents choose Les Menuires to introduce their children to the magic of the mountains.
A huge number of activities are available off the slopes for children that might not be able to spend their whole days skiing, with a sports and wellness complex including swimming pool, sports and spas (for the parents!).
On the slopes, tobogganing, snow scooters, dog sledding and snowshoe walks are the perfect solution for any youngsters that just can’t get enough of the snow!
Next to the Chalets de Bruyeres themselves, you can also find the famous ‘Speed Mountain’, a unique mountain coaster that’s always a hit with both parents and children!
This winter, the 3 Vallées have also struck up a partnership with the movie Frozen 2, so you can be sure fans of this movie will be sure to enjoy a holiday here!
Easily accessed by plane, train and road, we can understand why Les Menuires is a favourite with many keen skiers.
The Most Convenient Accommodation
Our top pick for ultimate convenience and service are the Chalets de Bruyeres, a selection of identical chalets with a ski-in, ski-out location just above the centre of Les Menuires. With access right on the piste, serious skiers will absolutely love these chalets, as you can easily ski directly to and from your door. No need to waste time walking to lifts or lugging heavy skis around – here you are ready to go the moment you leave your room, with a lift whisking you straight to the slopes and the Bruyéres gondola lift right outside your back door. This gondola takes you straight up to 2850m at the Mont de la Chambre, the peak above the Meribel valley, from which you can ski down into Val Thorens, Meribel or Les Menuires.
For beginners, Chalets de Bruyeres (pictured below, next to the lift) offers a great location as there is a ski school located right next door. This means you don’t have to worry about getting to your lessons in the morning and can be sure of easy access back to your room! The nursery and swimming pool are also just next to the chalets and all the resorts’ main shops, bars and restaurants are practically right on your doorstep. There’s even a nightclub 200m away, so younger groups will have a spot to dance away the night if they do so wish!
The Chalets de Bruyeres are made up of five chalets – Flora, Gabrielle, Estelle, Delfina and Hayley. Flora, Gabrielle and Estelle are all identical, with 6 bedrooms each, while Delfina and Hayley offer different layouts.
The former can sleep up to 12 adults and 4 children, thanks to two ‘family suites’ on the top floor, and all rooms are en-suite. A living room with cosy fireplace and dining area offers the perfect spot to relax after a long day’s skiing or a delicious, filling dinner, and free WiFi is also available for those that may need to keep up with goings on in the real world!
For alternative options, Chalet Hayley can occupy up to 12 adults across six bedrooms, while Chalet Delfina can sleep up to 14 across seven bedrooms, with the same living and dining area as the other chalets.
You can even book all five chalets as one group, meaning you’re able to sleep up to 75 people in a practically private location.
All the Chalets de Bruyeres have dedicated ski rooms with heated boot warmers, and the piece de resistance – their own outdoor hot tubs. There’s no better way to end a ski day than relaxing those aching muscles in a steaming hot tub, soaking in a spectacular view of the slopes!
So, if you’re looking for the most convenient location, with the best facilities, in the midst of one of the world’s best ski areas, you can’t go wrong with the Chalets de Bruyeres.
As with any resort, in Les Menuires, the best place to stay is with a reputable tour operator that really knows their stuff when it comes to the French Alps.
Ski Amis are a family brand that have been operating in the French Alps for countless years and have huge expertise in the area. They offer a wide range of catered and self-catered chalets and apartments for groups of all shapes and sizes, with a dedicated in-resort team that places huge emphasis on care for each and every guest.
To do so, they strive to ensure ultimate flexibility for all guests. Alongside the large range of accommodation options, you have total freedom when it comes to travel to your chosen resort, as well as full in-resort service. This means that you can pay for what you need (or want!) and not for what you don’t. We all know skiing isn’t the cheapest of hobbies, so this option can come in very handy when it comes to keeping costs down.
As skiers, we are often inundated with messages that it’s cheaper to book an all-inclusive ski package, with food, wine, ski hire and passes all included. However, companies such as Ski Amis offer tried and tested proof that this is not the case. You can personalise your holiday as you like and the team will ensure that you get your perfect bespoke ski holiday for the best possible price.