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The Accommodation

We have the exclusive use of a self contained ski-in ski-out ’Centre de Vacances’ (French Outdoor Centre) nestled into a wooded snowy paradise with exquisite views.

 

There are 24 rooms and each family has their own simple en suite dormitory (with comfy but by no means luxury nor glamorous 2m long bunk beds). Each room sleeps from 3 to 6 people. The rooms are not particularly cosy. There is however storage space and most rooms have a table and chairs. Sheets, pillows and duvets are provided. We make our own beds on arrival and strip them on departure. The bins are emptied and the shower rooms and w.c. are cleaned daily, but we are expected to keep our own rooms clean and swept. The showers are ‘army-styly’ to save water… i.e.. you have to hold up the shower head. The water is plentiful and deliciously hot!

There is a communal dining area where we all eat breakfast and dinner communally. Lunch is a picnic which we can eat on the mountain or at the Outdoor Centre. If we have lunch at the Outdoor Centre we are expected to clear up after ourselves.

There is a lovely open fire in the open plan lounge and bar.

There is a separate yoga room and movie room and downstairs there is a vast kids playroom with table tennis and baby foot.

Also downstairs is the ski hire and the ski and boot room.

The Food

The week is fully catered from dinner on Saturday evening to breakfast on Saturday morning.

Breakfast is a choice of two cereals, hot chocolate, coffee or tea, yogurt, and bread and jams. We recommend bringing your own favourite cereals, seeds, nuts, fruit, hard boiled eggs and milk alternatives if you wish to!

 

Lunch is a sandwich, 2 snacks, a bag of crisps and a piece of fruit. Again bring your own snacks if you have particular tastes!

 

Dinner starts with a soup or salad followed by a simple main course and a pudding. Dinners may be lasagne, shepherds pie, roast chicken, and one evening we have a raclette. (The food on this trip is basic and far from cordon blue. If you are a real foodie you may prefer our Summer trips!).

 

Vegetarian meals and any dietary requirements must be requested in advance on the on-line booking form. Please let us know if you have any allergies or complex dietary requirements as you might well need to bring some of your own supplies.

 

Teas, herbal teas and coffees are available most of the time. Bring some of your favourite herbal teas to share!

Hot Chocolate and cake is offered at about 4pm.

Ski Passes and Chamonix Ski Area

Our trip includes a wonderful Chamonix ski pass which gives us free access to just about every ski lift and cable car between Vallorcine and Chamonix including the Grand Montet, Aiguille du Midi, Les Houche!

 

La Poya is our local ski in- ski out area which is perfect for beginners and children wanting the freedom to ski with their friends.

 

There is a free train 5 minutes walk from the Outdoor Centre which takes you to all the larger Chamonix lift stations. One of Chamonix’s best ski areas Le Tour/La Balme (accessed from Vallorcine) is a sweaty 10 minutes ski-skate from our door, or a 5 minute train ride. We love this area as it has all levels of terrain and is queue free. Alternatively, you can get the train to Argentiere, or any of the other Chamonix ski areas.

 

The trains leave hourly so don’t miss it! There are also more frequent buses.

 

 

Children's Lunchtime Activities

By popular request, we arrange for one of our hosts to chaperone all the children from ski school at La Poya back to the Outdoor Centre for lunch to give parents an extra couple of hours on the slopes. Ski School is from 9.30-11.30 for 6 and unders and 9.15 to 11.45 for 7 and ups. Our hosts will chaperone, supervise and entertain the 5 to 8′s until 1pm.

 

Older children are welcome to join in the craft and musical activities.

Ski School

The friendly Vallorcine ESF Ski School operates from La Poya, right outside our Outdoor Centre. Their rates are published on their website here.  You get 10% off these rates if you book a week of group lessons. We will coordinate these to ensure you get the best deal.

 

If you are accomplished skiers, but still want lessons, you will be taken to the higher slopes at La Balme/ Vallorcine.

 

You will pay the ESF directly at the beginning of the week. They accept bank transfer, cash or credit cards in their office in Vallorcine.

 

When you fill in the booking form please let us know which ESF Level you think you are.. this is the link to the different ESF levels

 

Ski & Snowboard Hire

The Outdoor Centre hires its own ski and snowboard equipment at the amazing rate of £45 p.p.p.w. including helmets. This is exceptional value but in return the shop has little flexibility with only one slot a day for changes and adjustments.

The quality of the equipment is very good, but if you want more flexibility or to buy anything (googles, gloves), you can go to the local ski hire shop near by who have everything you will need.

Please let us know if you would like skis or snowboards when you book, including your approximate shoe sizes. We will add the £45 cost to your bill.

Booking Process

If you would like to book, check travel costs first. Feel free to call Saskia anytime for advice! When you press BOOK NOW , you will be directed to an on-line questionnaire which will give Saskia all the info she needs to plan your best possible holiday. This info is kept completely confidential. You will be sent an invoice and asked to pay a £50 deposit per person to hold your places. You pay by Bank Transfer or Paypal (3% surcharge). You can read all the T&C's before you pay anything. The balance is due 3 months before the trip.

 

 

You will be emailed a Welcome Letter a couple of months before the trip which has all the information you will need about the trip so you don't need to print anything now. Do book travel and travel insurance as soon as possible. For travel insurance, we recommend Insure&Go.

 

The Hosts

Saskia leads this trip. She set up the La Source Eco Lodge in 2007  running back to back ski and adventure holiday and yoga retreats until it was sold in 2011. Since then she has run her favourite trips and has pioneered this unique communal family ski holiday.

 

There are 6 incredible hosts! Marianne Grove runs the circus company Circorumbaba . Sam Petter runs Tattybumpkin a children's yoga company, Kevin Davidson teaches games at Steiner Schools around London and is completing his Masters in alternative education. He is a master fiddle player. Chris Petter teaches Music at the Central School or Art & Design, Olly Scott is export manager of Britain's oldest brewery and is famous for his dancing! 

What to Bring

We recommend good goggles (cheap ones fog up) and mittens (as they are much warmer than gloves). You will also need good thermals, a fleece, ski socks, balaclava or a Buff, water bottle that you can put a sock over to keep warm, a day back pack, ski trousers and a jacket. Try not to wear cotton near your body as if it gets wet, it stays wet all day.

 

We recommend buying ski gear from Ebay (there is no point buying lots of expensive kit for 1 or 2 weeks a year!) If you are in the UK, you can also usually get low cost essentials from shops like TKMaxx or Sports Direct. It can get very cold! 

If you have fast growing children or you are beginners you may want to hire your ski clothes. Ski Stuff was recommended to us by some of our guests.

SKI-STUFF

Tel: 01548 830953
Email: hire@ski-stuff.co.uk
http://www.ski-stuff.co.uk

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