Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Enjoying the Delights of La Plagne

One word comes to mind whenever La Plagne is mentioned: variety. From the pistes to the catered chalets to the snow-sureness of the runs, it is always a sure bet that you'll have a blast of a good time here. This variety arises organically from the fact that La Plagne consists, of eleven distinct, separate villages, each of which has its own character and operates in its own way. Of course, what this implies is that the runs and pistes will also have the same character of diversity.

The Villages

If your concern is premium accommodation, then find a gaggle of catered chalets in Plagne 1800. However, all the villages that make up La Plagne have their own hotels, apartments or chalets (did we mention each is self-sufficient?), so that should not be a problem. Despite their distinctions, however, you can basically group the villages into two general categories: seven villages were built for the purpose of exploiting the broad bowl to create on-or-above the tree line ski runs, whereas the other four were actual villages that were only subsequently expanded to accommodate.

The Dining Scene

Again, there is a good variety when it comes to the matter of where to eat while in La Plagne. Of course, aside from the obvious fact that catered chalets take care of everything, meal-wise, there is also a diversity of casual dining choices in La Plagne. In Hotel Carlina's restaurant, simply called 'C', a sumptuous three-course meal awaits the discerning diner. In Plagne-Centre, there is a bunch of good places, such as the aptly named "The Refuge and Maison". There are also pizzerias and places that serve tasty grilled meats. The bottom line: eating out is reasonable and does not leave a gaping void in the pocket. And as for apres-ski choices, let's just say people in La Plagne simply love having fun.

Child-Friendly Accommodation

Many good catered chalets are available throughout La Plagne, most of which are family-run, so you can be sure of a more intimate setting or efficient service. Moreover, there seems to be a conscious, concerted effort to make the whole place more accommodating to kids. This is evident in how each of the self-sufficient villages that make up La Plagne goes to great lengths to provide services that target children. What's more, several chalet operators, such as Esprit, also provide childcare services, or at least a semblance of it. Having facilities where you can leave the kids may be important, especially due to the fact that the pistes in La Plagne are usually crowded, which may pose a certain concern, if not hassle, for people who come with their children. Regardless of hotel, apartment or chalet you choose, however, it is fairly known that La Plagne is home to high-quality accommodations.

Danielle Hodges is the Marketing Manager for Ski Amis, a specialist ski travel agency and booking service offering bonded holidays staying in catered or self catered chalets in La Tania and other fantastic destinations. For a luxury or good-value skiing holiday and the best catered chalets call Ski Amis.

A Friendly, Warm Skiing Experience in La Tania

Still relatively "youngish" as a ski resort, La Tania began life as a mere accommodation base for ice hockey players in the early 1990s. These days, with its slew of cosy catered chalets and its unique, pivotal position that places it right smack in the middle of the more famous large resorts, La Tania has grown into a full-fledged resort that boasts of its own sought-after qualities. For one, despite all the developments it has undergone over the years, it still strongly retains its rustic ambiance-there's still that warm, friendly sense of community, reinforced by its intimate dimensions. In La Tania, even little things can surprise you.

Rustic Charm

Sure, La Tania may not be as sought-after as, say, Courchevel, and it may not have the throng of skiers from all over the world-but there lies its unique quality. It's a serene, relaxing place-never mind that skiing is essentially a white-knuckled, thrilling outdoor activity. The catered chalets or family-run hotels in the area also exude this homey character-from the way your meals are prepared and served, to the staff's attention to every detail just to make it cosy for you. While some people are put off by La Tania's sense of intimacy, it is this very quality that has been drawing its own kind of visitors.

Gentle Challenges

Generally, La Tania's pistes present few challenges-which, if you're an expert, may be a huge turn-off. You might end up being bored here, as even what are marked as blacks feel like reds most of the time, whereas those that are undeniably blacks exist only for short distances. The ski routes, easily accessible from the area's catered chalets, may be considered more challenging by any standard, but to be on the safe side, skiing in La Tania is largely for beginners and intermediates. Beginners should try the short run right at the middle of the resort, supported with a free drag lift. If you soon get tired of it, take the lift to the nearby Val Thorens for a good intermediate run. La Tania has links to the Three Valleys system, which means you're always a couple of lifts away from the posh Courchevel 1850, for instance, should you decide to try it out. And if you can have time to explore without forgetting your safety, there is still so much "untracked powder" to discover. But only with a caveat: do so when weather conditions are good.


What makes La Tania stand out from its more posh neighbours are its family-friendly (read: children friendly) facilities-even the catered chalets and hotels make it a point to answer to your every need. In terms of facilities, La Tania has more than enough for self-sufficiency: its own supermarket, half a dozen bars and eight restaurants attest to this. There's also an unforgettable delicatessen and a decent pizzeria. The apr├Ęs ski scene is also vigorous, with live music and good parties on most nights.