Over a metre of snow has fallen across the French Alps in the last couple of weeks, with the depth now at around 180cm on the upper summits of Tignes. After the low levels of snow during the Christmas and New Year periods, the snow is a welcome relief for the tourist industry and also for those guests booked for later trips in the season.
Tignes Le Lac and Val Claret with an abundance of snow, taken yesterday the 21st January 2016
January is renowned for being a quiet month in the Alps, and due to the sparse snow in December it seems that people that would normally come at this time of year have been deterred somewhat. This is a huge shame as the conditions right now are incredible, with ample snow and bluebird days -the seasonal staff are in their element! Wide, empty, corduroy pistes are there for the taking and with no lift queues at all, so much more ground can be covered in a day. There is still a lot of off-piste powder to be had, with ski touring being offered by numerous guides. In Tignes we would recommend Flossie Cockle from Freeflo and Rab Bickerdike from TDC.
After a busy start to the year, our chalets in Villaroger, Les Coches and Tignes are all fairly quiet right now and as a result we are offering some great last minute deals. Flights are proving to be reasonable last minute too, maybe due also to lack of bookings. A recent flight I was on from Geneva to Manchester was extremely quiet giving me an entire row to stretch out on! So if you have the luxury of being able to take time off as and when, I can only recommend coming out to see us sooner rather than later. If you want to find out more about what’s currently on offer in France, contact email@example.com for more information.
There is no snow forecast for the next week or so but things can change incredibly quickly in the Alps and with the cold temperatures that are currently being experienced, the snow that is already here is set to stay. Add to this, the fact that the pisteurs are working hard to maintain the pistes and the snow cannons are constantly creating new snow and the pistes will continue to be in great condition for everyone to enjoy for weeks to come.
The XXV1 International Snow Festival takes place in Dolomiti Superski this week.
Creation of imaginative sculptures begins tomorrow (13/01/16) in San Candido, in the Sextner Dolomiten region, and from the 18/01/16 in San Vigilio in Kronplatz. This year, over 30 artists are participating in teams coming from USA, Russia, Romania, Latvia, France, Netherlands, Mexico, and Italy, as well as Sud Tyrolean teams from the School of Stone Processing in Lasa, School for Sculptors in Innsbruck and from the Ortesei Art School.
The festival promises to be spectacular. The rules are simple:- Fresh snow is pressed into 3 x 3 x 3 metre blocks which are located in the main streetss and areas of the villages. A raffle is drawn to decide the blocks and each team then carves their design ideas into the snow using tools and nothing else but water which will of course quickly turn to ice in winter temperatures. The artists have just 3 days to complete their masterpieces after which time, tourists and local residents can vote for their favourite. The sculptures will be illuminated in the evenings creating amazing effects that differ from daylight views. The sculptures can be admired until mild weather melts them away and this will hopefully be some time in low winter temperatures.
San Candido, SEXTNER DOLOMITEN – snow sculpture building 13 Jan to 15 Jan 2016
San Vigilio, KRONPLATZ– snow sculpture building 18 Jan to 20 Jan 2016
These pictures are of previous year’s sculptures and we look forward to seeing 2016’s creations of this increasingly popular form of artwork. Our Chalet Hotel Diamant, Kronplatz, is within easy access of the San Vigilio festival and with fresh snow this week and more forecast, our guests will definitely be having fun!
Sculpture of skier
Sculptures in 2015 International Festival, Sud Tyrol
This December marks the 30th anniversary of the Audi FIS Ski World Cup in Alta Badia; the races will be taking place across 20th & 21st December. All the usual big ski stars will be there (last year’s podium : First place for Marcel Hirscher (Austria), second for Ted Ligety (USA) and third for Thomas Fanara (France).
Great news this time round – there’s a new event! December 21st will stage the Parallel Giant Slalom at night, a new discipline in the FIS calendar. Alta Badia are proud to host it for the first time ever on the Gran Risa! We can’t wait to go and watch …
Winter sales are now open for train tickets throughout Europe with special rates for Early Bird tickets. These are limited, book now for the best rates this winter.
Trains to the French Alps run from Paris to Bourg St. Maurice, just 30 minutes from our Chalet Hotel Les Melezes, Tignes, or Pére Marie, Villaroger, Paradiski, and prices start from just £38 return.
DOLOMITI SUPERSKI by train
Paris to Venice from just 35€ one way. Take the Thello sleeper train departing Paris daily and arrive the next morning in Venice. The service arriving on Sunday mornings fits with our transfer service to Albergo Frohsinn, Alta Badia or Chalet Hotel Diamant, Kronplatz.
Alternative rail routes to the Italian Dolomites include via the scenic Arlberg Pass from Switzerland, or by German rail to Innsbruck.
For really helpful information about rail travel throughout Europe, visit www.seat61.com
For booking trains from UK stations to anywhere in Europe, visit LOCO2. This site makes booking train connections unbelievably simple!
Snow is falling in Tignes & the Dolomites today and we’re opening on 9th October for Ski & Board Camp 2015 . Price for a 3 night stay from just £129 per person and includes Geneva transfers, catered accommodation, lift pass and rental equipment.
THIS OFFER RUNS THROUGHOUT OCTOBER HALF TERM and we are running Freeski Courses for junior shredders and we’ve got some great Pre Season Progression Courses throughout the offer.
Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for further details.
Longing to Work A Ski Season?
We are currently recruiting for winter season 2015/16 and have positions available for chalet hosts, house/chalet manager, chef/caterers/chalet cooks, bar staff, drivers and ski techs.
If you are passionate about the outdoors and keen to be in the mountains and have a good attitude to work and customer service we may have the perfect opportunity for you. Please send CV with covering letter to email@example.com
The Ski & Board Camp 2015 is NOW ON SALE – popular as ever, it’s selling fast. Where else can you bag 3 nights catered accommodation, Geneva transfers, lift pass and equipment rental from just £125? Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for further information.
A Via Ferrata is a protected climbing route, the name means “iron road” in Italian. Modern Via Ferratas have a steel cable running along the route which is fixed to the rock every 3 to 10 metres. Climbers can secure themselves to the cable using via ferrata kit, limiting any fall, and use the cable as an aid to climbing. Other aids to climbing such as iron rungs, pegs, carved steps, ladders and bridges may be located on the course and allow potentially dangerous routes to be undertaken with less risk than unprotected scrambling or climbing and without the need for climbing ropes. Relatively inexperienced climbers can enjoy the dramatic positions and access difficult peaks that would otherwise be only accessible to serious mountaineers. Some equipment is required (climbing harness and via ferrata kit comprising of a energy absorbing lanyard with 2 carabiners, plus a helmet) and a good head for heights is essential.
This summer the area of Alta Badia in the Italian Dolomites are going all out to become one of Europe’s top areas for cycling holidays.
The tourist office have created graded routes both for road cyclists and for mountain bikers and increased the number of lifts that can carry cycles.
Road cyclists can take part this summer in a series of guided road bike tours arranged by the Touist Office of Alta Badia in collaboration with Dolomite Biking Guides for just 25€. One of these routes, Passo delle Erbe / Wurtzjoch Tour passes right by our own Chalet Hotel Diamant.
It is even possible to hire electric cycles locally if you need some help with the hilly terrain!
Chalet Hotel Diamant has indoor cycle storage (locked) and an area where you can work on your bike, as well as several bikes guests can hire.
This weekend Kronplatz hosts the Snow Volleyball World Tour for the third time. Courts have been marked out at the top of Concordia 2000, Plan de Corones, and over 200 participants will compete.
Snow Volley ball is volleyball on snow. It took off in Wagrain, Austria in 2008 and was acknowledged as an official sport by the Austrian Volleyball Association in 2011. The annual tour first took place in 2012 and has expanded each year. This winter, tour events have already taken place in Austria, Switzerland and the Czech Republic before visiting Kronplatz in Italy. The movement are working hard to achieve global recognition for this increasingly popular sport and are seeking venues to host an offical European Championship in 2016.
With the atmosphere of a beach party complete with deck-chairs, palm trees, hot tub and cheerleaders, Kronplatz looks set to have an entertaining weekend.
In the words of Skirama who are promoting the event sponsored by Amway – “Good mood guaranteed!”