Sauze d’Oulx, pronounced “Sow-zee-doo” was one of the most successful Italian ski resorts on the 1970s and ’80s, expanding rapidly. Located on a high sunny ‘balcony’ in the Susa Valley, the resort is surrounded by larch forest above. The trails cut down through this natural amphitheatre have an excellent snow record. Its success resulted from its large and varied ski area, linked to Sestrière, its lively night life and reasonable prices. The resulting growth has led to the construction of a large number of rectangular concrete apartment blocks, mirroring its French partner, Montgènevre, now lift-linked to Sauze at the other end of the long Milky Way circuit.
Although Sauze still has a delightful ancient heart of stone buildings, narrow streets and a cobbled square with water fountain, as well as locals prepared to dress in traditional attire for ancient festivals, these are all somewhat swamped by the newer developments all around.
If you are looking for a ski destination that combines stunning scenery, great skiing, and lively nightlife, then Sauze d’Olux might be the perfect choice for you. This charming Italian resort is part of the Via Lattea ski area, which offers over 200 pistes across two countries. Sauze d’Olux is also easy to reach from Turin airport, making it ideal for a weekend getaway or a longer holiday.
We, @clauandben_skitravels, visited Sauze d’Olux on 16-17 January and had a blast. It was our first ski trip together and we fell in love with the place. Here are some of the highlights of our stay and why we think you should visit Sauze d’Olux too.
The Milky Way (aka Via Lattea) ski area is now one of the largest in Europe, with 212 routes, many of which wind through beautiful tree covered landscapes. Lying on the west side of the area, Sauze has a reputation for being a red-run paradise, making it a great destination for intermediate skiers. More advanced skiers will enjoy the varied routes and the ability to ski all the way across to Montgènevre, while beginners are not left out, with plenty of gentle blue runs to choose from.
One of the best things about Sauze d’Olux is that it is connected to the Via Lattea ski area, which spans Italy and France. You can ski to the neighbouring resorts of Sestriere and Montgenevre using the linked lifts. If you are feeling adventurous, you can even ski across the border and experience the French side of the Milky Way.
Our favourite slope was the 2000 red run, which starts from the top of the Clotes chairlift and goes all the way down to the village. It is a long and flowing run that lets you pick up some speed and enjoy the scenery. The slope also takes you past the Sestriere chair link, which offers amazing views of the valley and the mountains.
Sauze d’Olux is not only a great place to ski, but also a great place to party. The resort has a reputation for its lively après scene, which attracts a lot of British skiers and snowboarders. You can find a variety of bars and pubs that cater to different tastes and budgets.
Our favourite spot was La Grangia, an outdoor terrace at the bottom of the slopes that you can ski into. The atmosphere was electric, with a DJ playing on a balcony, fireworks lighting up the sky, and people dancing and drinking. It was the perfect way to end a day on the slopes.
If you are looking for a more sophisticated après vibe, you can check out Miravallino, a stylish pub and restaurant that offers live music and a DJ set into the early hours. You can enjoy a cocktail or a glass of wine while listening to some tunes and mingling with other skiers.
For a more casual and fun atmosphere, you can head to Ghost Bar, a no-frills pub that has great DJs, excellent atmosphere, and beer towers. You can also join the locals and tourists in dancing on tables and chairs. The drinks are very reasonably priced and the service is friendly.
Sauze d’Olux has a lot of options when it comes to dining, from pizza and pasta to burgers and steaks. You can find some delicious and affordable places to eat in the village or on the mountain.
One of our favourite places was Sport Cafe, a cosy and modern cafe that serves really good pizzas and burgers. The prices were very reasonable, between 10 and 13 euros, and they also showed live sport on many of their screens. It was a great place to relax and watch some football after a day of skiing.
Another place we liked was Pizza House, a takeaway place that sells slices of pizza for 3 euros. The pizza was really tasty and filling, and they had a lot of toppings to choose from. It was a quick and easy meal to go when we were in a hurry.
For a mountain stop, we recommend Bar Ristorante Alpette, a lovely place located on the mountainside in Sestriere. It was a great place to stop for an afternoon hot chocolate and a snack. They also served a local specialty called bombardino, a hot drink made with brandy, egg liqueur, and whipped cream. It was very warming and delicious.
Sauze d’Olux is a fantastic ski resort that offers a lot of fun and value for money. It has a great ski area, a lively après scene, and a charming village. It is also easy to get to from Turin airport, making it ideal for a short or long ski holiday.
We had a wonderful time in Sauze d’Olux and we can’t wait to go back. It is one of our favourite ski destinations and we highly recommend it to anyone who loves skiing and partying.
If you want to see more of our ski adventures, follow us on @clauandben_skitravels. We are on a mission to visit 24 ski resorts in 2024 and share our experiences with you. Stay tuned for more reviews and tips.
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Skiing has been popular here for over a century and world champions like Piero Gros, a gold medalist of the 1976 Olympics, have been based here and more recently the resort was a venue for the 2006 Winter Olympics. Skiing first began on the local slopes at the end of the nineteenth century when a Swiss engineer, Adolfo Kind, taught skiing to locals and guests using wooden boards strapped to the feet.
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