Posted on 26 July 2022
Known for glitz and glamour, Courchevel in France attracts high-flying members of society worldwide, including royalty and celebrities. Yet many people misunderstand Courchevel. They think mountain lunches with the best food and upmarket ski chalets means pricy holidays. But there is more to Courchevel than hefty prices. Additionally, there is not just one ski resort but four altogether. The villages below each have their character distinct from Courchevel 1850 and are worth visiting for an alternative destination with lower prices, but equal standards.
Guide to Courchevel in France
Alpine Courchevel Le Praz
Not everybody who visits France is after the sort of nightlife in 1850, Val Thorens or Meribel. Some people like small, Alpine hotel retreats to retire to at the end of the ski day. Courchevel Le Praz, the lowest of Courchevel’s four villages, is also the oldest Alpine retreat and an ideal place to stay. Popular amongst families, the 1850 lift gets kids on time for morning ski school. While much of Courchevel is partially purpose-built, Le Praz is the oldest part of the resort with the most traditional character. The other places have plenty of charms, but we think Courchevel Le Praz is underrated. This is mainly due to the low altitude and whether property buyers in Courchevel can find that ideal ski in ski out chalet.
Visit Courchevel Moriond
Courchevel Moriond 1650 underwent massive changes that altered the public image. This makes this ski resort an ideal choice if you are looking at property in Courchevel. With some of the liveliest après ski in the Courchevel Valley, the immediate pistes are suitable for intermediate skiers. The area isn’t as rustic or glitzy as Le Praz in 1850. Moriond combines elements of old farming towns with large purpose-built, wood-clad apartment buildings lining main streets. While Moriond isn’t pretty as Le Praz, it’s more snow-sure, so apartments or chalets are as close to ski-in / ski-out as they can get.
Explore Courchevel 1550
Less exclusive than luxury 1850, quieter than Moriond, and higher than Le Praz, Courchevel 1550 is an excellent hotel base for skiers in France. The village centre’s weekly food and clothing market sells local cheeses, cured meats, and preserves like jam and chutneys. Pick up second-hand bargains and look at the wares of local clothing sellers. As the village lift to 1850 is open until 12.30 am each evening, it is easy for 1850 residents to pop down for the market and vice versa. Market or not, Courchevel Village is ideal for hotels and property ownership. The village isn’t as lively as during the season as the sister resorts like Moriond, but it’s got more merits.
Skiing in Courchevel
The ski slopes of Courchevel are some of Europe’s best because it taps into the fabulously extensive Three Valleys ski area (Les Trois Vallées). Miles of pisted terrain attract beginners, intermediate, and expert skiers with altitude couloirs and snow parks. If you are looking at properties or hotels in Courchevel, expect great skiing that attracts global visitors. While the Moriond ski area is at the far end of the Three Valleys, day trips to the Val Thorens ski slopes are trickier, but the site is well connected with lifts and good, well-pisted connecting runs. The mountain restaurants at 1850 charge hefty prices, but other places are just as good. Read more in our guide about the Three Valleys ski area of the French Alps.
Après Ski in Couchevel – France
Après ski is lively and varied in Courchevel, from family restaurants that offer quiet evenings to piano bars and vibrant nightclubs for great nights out. Many restaurants provide authentic local French cuisine and international dishes to Italian favourites, but book reservations in Michelin-star restaurants for special evenings with gastronomic delights. Bakeries and butchers in Courchevel sell everything self-catering holidaymakers could want, from vast selections of meats and fresh fish to fresh bread and delicious cheeses. Then, drink it with classy wines and liqueur coffees by a roaring fire in your luxury ski chalet.
Things to Do in Courchevel
The various amenities in Courchevel spoil visitors with choice. Families enjoy the Indian Trail and Native American camp with Tepees, face painting, and archery. Shop in designer boutiques selling everything from ski wear to Louis Vuitton, Valentino, Cartier, Dior, and Chanel. Chocolate lovers should head to the handcrafted chocolate workshop. Courchevel is also renowned for international events throughout the year. Also, marvel at the international fireworks festival, or go skiing by torchlight after enjoying a Savoyard dinner. Don’t forget the indoor ice skating or snow and fire ski show, water sports and biking to take in the breathtaking scenic views. The helicopter sightseeing mountain tours give stunning panoramic views. Then there’s speed riding, a cross between paragliding and skiing; activities are abundant for everyone.
Buying Property in Courchevel
Compared to fully developed Val Thorens, where property rarely becomes available, Meribel and Courchevel have various new-build apartments and chalets. The Courchevel region has a selection of different ski apartments, with two or three bedrooms and some ski-in / ski-out property. There are also several chalets for sale, which is comparatively rare in other ski areas across the French Alps. Buying new-build property often brings more benefits than resale properties. The presence of new development signifies that the property market is still growing and, therefore, ideal for investment. Whether you’re looking at Courchevel or elsewhere in France, see our selection of properties for sale in the Alps. For further information or to arrange viewings, get in touch with us!
Also, About Ski Resort in France
Closest Airports to Geneva Airport: When purchasing ski property, many clients look at resorts close to Geneva because of the airport. The smooth operating air travel hub hosting flights worldwide services the French Alps. Additionally, ski property owners do not want lengthy transfers after flights and want to get into their chalet in no time. Therefore, they hire cars and head to their ski chalet or apartment to kick start their holiday quickly. So, we compiled this list of destinations near Geneva.
Best Ski Resorts in the World: When looking at winter ski resorts, one can only be amazed at the global map stretching from New Zealand to Japan to America and the time-honoured favourites; France and Switzerland. While skiing places in the past always targeted elite society, these days, many mainstream ski markets have excelled as popular winter destinations for everyone. For this article, we based our ratings of ski destinations on several factors, including après ski and other activities. So, let us look at experiencing top-notch skiing vacations, aside from Courchevel in France.