A decade or so ago, luxury skiing meant a nice-looking chalet with a view and a hot tub thrown in. Since then, the bar has been raised to a new level of super lux. An army of billionaire investors, top architects and designers are re-writing luxury mountain living in the Alps, cherry picking the most exclusive spots in the world’s best ski areas and building awe-inspiring alpine homes.
Today home cinemas, private spas, swimming pools, wine cellars and gyms have become the norm for superlux chalets with some costing over £100,000 to rent for a week with a team of staff that can include housekeeper, butler, gourmet chef, masseuse, nanny and a chauffeur at your service. Yep you could buy your own small apartment in some less swanky resorts for the same price as just one week in these classy chalets in high season.
This is the super ski high life for anyone who likes champagne - Cristal for breakfast and the off piste powder variety via heli and your personal IFMGA mountain guide. At this level of luxury living not many will be trawling TripAdvisor for the best recommendations. But if your best mate isn't Richard Branson offering you The Lodge in Verbier and you can't trust your PA not to book you into La Plagne, then there are luxury chalet specialists such as Sno who can organise your trip right down to the nearest heli pad (that is, if it isn't actually ON the chalet roof).
10 of the Most Luxurious Chalets in the Alps
Chalet Marco Polo, Val d’Isere
Big skiing in the Espace Killy and bigger après ski parties are the order of the day in Val d’Isere. There are loads of luxury chalets here, but the king of the castle has to be the award-winning Marco Polo. The swimming pool looks up to a ceiling imported from a Moroccan souk, tiled in gold with disco lighting and smoke machines for poolside parties.
£24,500 - £46,000 for 7 nights
Chalet Le Namaste, Courchevel
Courchevel is as glamorous as the French Alps where the designer shopping is as good as its skiing. Let boutique staff fawn over you or ski the vast Trois Vallees, then relax with Jereboams of champagne in sleek piano bars later on. Le Namaste is the former summer house of Margaret Thatcher where you can choose to snooze in designer bedrooms, a fireside leather armchair, out on the sun terrace OR in the private spa.
£18,700 - £61,000 for 7 nights
Chalet No. 14, Verbier
European royals, movie stars and millionaires are drawn to Verbier like bees to honey for its famous nightclubs and, of course, the incredible off piste. Make Chalet No. 14 your bolthole and you have a private spa to pamper you, gourmet cuisine and a chauffeur at your service.
69,000 CHF - 99,000 CHF for 7 nights
Chalet Shalimar, Zermatt
The views of the Matterhorn are pretty impressive but wait until you see what’s hidden within the walls of the wow-factor wooden houses in Zermatt. After a day of snow sure skiing, gourmet lunching and mountainside après ski, head home to Chalet Shalimar with its indoor swimming pool and spa.
40,050 CHF - 57,150 CHF for 7 nights
Chalet Maria Schnee, St Anton
Famous for its après ski, with a big reputation for extreme skiing to boot, yep, it's St Anton. In Chalet Maria Schnee, antique Tyrolean woodwork meets modern art and plush furnishings. The spa and sauna ease any aches from a day on the Arlberg, while a driver transports you between the mountain madness of the Mooserwirt and your luxurious alpine home.
€33,815 - €55,800 for 7 nights
Chalet Grand Corniche, Les Gets
Who would have thought that this quiet Portes du Soleil village would be hiding one of the coolest chalets on the planet? Grand Corniche in Les Gets rivals the swankiest chalets in Verbier and Val d’Isere, with facilities that’ll leave your inner child grinning: a glass sauna, an outdoor heated infinity pool, AND a slide that links the fourth-floor bar with the wine cellar, where the dining table can transform into a snooker table.
£22,800 - £47,500 for 7 nights
Chalet Chesa Falcun, Klosters
Ask an A-Lister what they like about Klosters and the answer is almost always its understated atmosphere. Hollywood icons and royals may well be regulars, but locals don’t hound them for selfies – everyone comes here for the peace, quiet and no-fuss nature. Indoors, luxury lodgings keep things comfortable, none more so than the Chalet Chesa Falcun which looks over the valley with six en-suite bedrooms, a wellness area and an open-air jacuzzi.
50,000 CHF - 125,000 CHF for 7 nights
You’re super closer to the Lech-Zurs ski area from ski-out chalet überHaus, but you might find yourself praying for a two-day Arlberg white-out as an excuse to stay home and enjoy the cinema room, gym, spa facilities, library and wine cave. Request some sunshine too though, if only to appreciate the beautiful views from the outdoor pool.
€42,700 - €134 500 for 7 nights
Mont Tremblant, Meribel
Winner of Best Luxury Ski Chalet in France in the 2016 World Ski Awards, Chalet Mont Tremblant occupies its own grounds in the centre of Meribel. Stay in the master suite, which takes over the whole first floor and includes a double shower, open fire and beautiful views. There’s a cinema and massage area, while you’ll find a hot tub outdoors, plus an infinity pool fitted with a jet stream.
£23,750 - £72,500 for 7 nights
Chalet Jejalp, Morzine
After spending your days skiing the vast 650km of pistes in the Portes du Soleil, the Chalet Jejalp in Morzine lets you kick back and relax the five-star way. Surrounded by floor to ceiling windows, the third floor features a private spa, with a sauna, hot tub and relaxation zone. There's also your own private cinema and games rooms, a terrace and firepit and a fully stocked bar with a two-floor glass wine cellar - and champagne on tap all day.
£17,900 - £22,500 for 7 nights