09 Sep Myth-Busting: Courchevel is frighteningly expensive and only visited by the super-rich
Kaluma Travel founder, Richard Lumb, is fed up with the myth that Courchevel is a ski resort reserved for the super-rich.
If you have been avoiding it because you think it’s frighteningly expensive it’s time to rethink, says Richard:
Too many times I hear that Courchevel, particularly 1850, is the reserve of the super-rich. Having lived there for well over a decade, I will concede that some of the resort may have gone a Jimmy Choo step too bling.
The center of Courchevel 1850 has seen the arrival of the top names in fashion and jewellery. Chanel, Prada, Panerai watches, Graff diamonds, Lacroix, Brentana furs and ‘Save the Rich’ (no I didn’t make that up!) are all exclusive brands with outlets in the resort. Moncler is so last year. darling.
And if you have a few minutes while the kids go ice skating, it’s even possible to rent yourself a super-yacht for the Spring St Tropez weekend.
Courchevel is ahead of the curve
So far, so bling, but this kind of capital does not flow without serious consideration and very good reason.
There has been a fascinating cycle at play, but I would argue that the resort is ahead of the curve versus its competitors, and is in fact on the way to future-proofing the level of luxury accommodation available.
Between ‘big name’ resorts, there has always been an undercurrent of quiet, but fierce competition to win big ticket bookings and to be perceived as the final word in luxury. As a result, there have been some incredible developments in terms of hotels, chalets, restaurants, retailing, infrastructure and, of course, ski lifts too.
The real secret of Courchevel’s success: A superb ski area
The underlying and major reason for the Courchevel’s enduring success is the mountain. Nowhere else on the planet is there such an array of superb skiing, delivered with the ultimate ski-in ski-out convenience.
And there is so much of it, all connected as if it had been deliberately sculpted by the glaciers to deliver the best ski slopes that nature could muster. Add a snowstorm of hundreds of millions of euros of ski lift investment and centuries of local heritage, et voila, Courchevel is the real deal.
Ignore the negative press
Ignoring the negative press and taking a few steps away from the 5-star palaces and super-yacht styled chalets, there are loads of fabulous options to enjoy great accommodation, authentic but not overpriced restaurants, friendly and highly knowledgeable locals, riotous après ski (the legendary Folie Douce is just .one ski lift away) and just the best skiing you can find anywhere.
I say that as someone who has been lucky enough to ski in over 50 resorts during my twenty-year career in the ski industry. I still end up concluding that for an all-round resort, Courchevel cannot be beaten.
Book with a specialist company
My advice is to make your enquiries for the perfect trip with an experienced specialist company, not a generic ‘ski agent’ – aka; jack-of-all master-of-none merchant.
A proper local expert will advise you on every detail, so your valuable time and money is maximised. Each day will exceed your expectations, each run skied should be perfectly matched to your ability and hand-picked lunch spots will surprise and delight.
All of this is possible and much more, and that’s without feeling the pressure to relax in a bath in vintage champagne just to keep up with the Joneses. Unless of course you particularly want to!
In-resort Concierge Service
If you’d like to find out more about the best that Courchevel has to offer, then please contact our team of experts in our UK office on 01730 887527. Once out in Courchevel you can enjoy our in-resort Concierge Service to ensure every last detail of your holiday is taken care of (even filling a bath with champagne, if necessary!).