Originally two villages, the natural advantages and resulting popularity of Crans and Montana led to the two villages joining under one name in the 1960s. Those advantages begin with the resort’s wonderful location, on a sunny terrace of lakes and woodland with views across the Rhone Valley and out towards the mountain peaks of the Matterhorn and Mont Blanc.
Famous for its pure mountain air, Crans Montana today is a large, cosmopolitan resort boasting over 60 international restaurants, an excellent range of shops, lively nightlife and culture, a comprehensive program of activities and a wide-ranging choice of sporting activities beyond skiing. A free bus service links all the different sections of the resort. Crans Montana is also building a reputation as an international conference centre similar to Davos, attracting scientists, economists and politicians from all over the world to events based in its Regent Congress Hall.
Crans Montana has a long and illustrious history in winter sports and Swiss tourism in general dating back to the early years, although the resort also recognised the potential of golf from the start, opening the Severiano Ballesteros 18 hole course as early as 1906 and staging the first Swiss Open in 1939. The first hotel, Le Parc, opened in Montana in 1893. Over 100 years later there are now more than 30 hotels, with total tourist bed numbers of over 40,000. The resort’s history is inextricably tied up with the Central European Latine culture, a tradition still clearly visible today.