All this week our resident skier Helen is sharing some of her top tips from family ski brands to help you decide if a ski holiday is for you, and how to make it a fabulous experience for your own family. Yesterday she wrote about some of her favourite family ski chalets at ChaletFinder; today she’s excited about the prospect of spending Christmas in a ski resort, and looks at some of the things on offer for families over Christmas with Club Med.
Family skiing at Christmas
Before we had children, my husband and I would often go skiing over Christmas or New Year. There’s something quite magical about seeing in the new year in a frosty climate, with the moon shining over sparkling mountains, then rushing out into the cold, giddy with champagne and excitement, to celebrate with fireworks or a snowball fight. Who wouldn’t want to share that with their children? And a ski holiday has to be the ultimate White Christmas, with snow, sledging, and log fires to snuggle by after a huge dinner, not to mention the gingerbread houses and sleigh bells. Ski resorts go all out for Christmas excess, and I for one love it!
Club Med are renowned for their luxury all-inclusive holidays so it’s no surprise that they have a big presence in the ski travel industry. With 23 resorts in their portfolio, they cover some of the best locations in the Alps, and have impressive fully catered chalets so that you can enjoy a full day on the slopes and relax every evening. But if you’re serious skiers, what you’ll be most impressed with is the extent of their kids clubs. Club Med welcome children from 4 months to 17 years, in 4 different age groups, but in their ski resorts children can learn to ski or snowboard from the age of two. So while you’re enjoying the slopes, the youngest members of your family can be learning their skills and having fun with children their own age, led by fully qualified nannies and instructors.
My own kids have always been nervous about holidaying away from home at Christmas. How will Santa know where we are? And will he still be able to get all those presents through the Eurotunnel? Club Med know how important a family Christmas is, and they’re pulling out all the stops to make sure every festive angle is covered. From tree-decorating on Christmas Eve while the grown-ups sip cocktails, to a proper Christmas dinner, complete with visit from Santa, the whole family will have a Christmas to remember.
Here’s their pick of the best resorts for a festive family ski trip
Fancy a dip in that pool? Located in the heart of a beautifully preserved mountain environment, Valmorel offers a magnificent view of the Alps and is the perfect family environment. Children of all ages are welcome with kids clubs from 4 months to 17 years. Ski passes for everyone are included in the package, removing the stress of organising everything, and leaving more time for family.
- Prices are £1,585 per adult and £1,315 per child over the age of four, children under the age of four stay free.
In the heart of the Southern Alps, Club Med Serre Chevalier provides the perfect escape for those looking for pure air and beautiful landscapes. Next to a charming lake, this resort is undeniably quaint with its stone and wooden chalets contrasting the evergreen slopes. The ski pass included in the package gives access to 250km of ski runs suitable for all levels in the ‘Grand Serre-Chevalier.’ Alpine skiing, snowboarding and multi-sports programme are all included, with professional ski instructors familiar with the local terrain.
- Children of all ages welcome, with children’s Club facilities from as young as four month’s old
- £1,285 per adult and £1,069 per child over four, with children under four staying free
On top of the world, La Plagne 2100 is a modern ski resort with a stunning view of Mont Blanc. With over 425 km of high-altitude, superb Savoie slopes you’ll never be bored, and the Club Med Spa by PAYOT provides the perfect relaxation after a hard day’s skiing.
- Children of all ages are welcome, with Petit Club Med from age two.
- Prices are £1,585 per adult and £1,315 per child over four, with children under four staying free.
Located in Italy’s Piedmont region at an altitude of 1,600 metres, families choosing to spend the festive season at Club Med Pragelato can either stay in the newly-built resort or one of its charming chalets offering premium family accommodation. Hosting the Turin Olympics in 2006, guests can follow in the path of champions In Europe’s second largest ski domain. Your ski pass gives you the freedom to enjoy the entire ‘Via Lattea’ (Milky Way) ski area.
- Children’s clubs cater for children of two to seventeen years with sports activities, games and entertainment evenings
- £1,605 per adult and £1,355 per child over four, with children under four staying free
Nestled in the heart of The Three Valleys, Club Med Val Thorens offers the perfect balance of exceptional skiing with the pleasures of après-ski. Opened in 2014, this modern resort caters mainly to families with slightly older kids, providing guests with a whole host of new sensations and experiences. Relax in the afternoons with a session in the Club Med Spa by CARITA or keep your adrenalin pumping on the 10-metre climbing wall in the lobby of the hotel. And when you’re done with all that, spend some quality family time by the log fire in the evening or enjoy a taste of fine-dining by Michelin-starred chef Edouard Loubet.
- £1,635 per adult and £1,355 per child over four, with children under four staying free
Feeling ski inspired yet? Come back tomorrow when we’ll be telling you some of the things you can do on a family ski holiday if you’re not really a skier…
Club Med have been awarded “Brand of the Year” at the 2015 World Branding Awards, the Silver award in Prima Baby’s “Best Family Holiday Brand for 2015”, 26 of their resorts have been awarded the ‘2015 TripAdvisor Travelers’ Choice Award’ and 42 Club Med resorts have received ‘2015 TripAdvisor’s Certificate of Excellence’.