Travel Spotlight

What’s New: The Most Stylish Ski Resorts to Know Now

December marks the official kick-off to the ski season at Indagare's favorite snowy destinations around the world. Some major mountains—like Zermatt and Vail—are already welcoming visitors, while many others are set to open this week and next. This year's season promises to be an exciting one, thanks to several new hotel openings in both beloved and unexpected destinations, from the Alps to the Rockies. Whether you are an avid athlete in search of untouched terrain or a style maven more interested in après-ski, these are the stylish ski resorts and lodges to know now.

Contact Indagare to plan a ski trip to one of these stylish ski resorts and lodges. Our specialists will match you with the best property for you and tailor a winter itinerary for your interests.

American West

Park City, Utah: Two Resorts to Know

One of this year's most anticipated ski resort openings is the Lodge at Blue Sky, a contemporary, 46-room resort set on a 3,500-acre ranch just a 25-minute drive from Park City Mountain, with heli-skiing also available directly from the property. Part of the exclusive Auberge Resorts Collection, the Lodge at Blue Sky focuses on connecting guests with the surrounding environment—whether through its gourmet, organic cuisine (sourced from the 1.5-acre farm on property) or the cliffside wellness sanctuary. While complimentary activities like meditations and s'mores, as well as the Little Vaquero kids club, will delight families, couples and friends looking for privacy can relax in the five Creek Cottages tucked within the adults-only section and enjoy live music at the ranch's High West Distillery, as well as easy access to Park City's nightlife. Plus, with the opening of the billion-dollar, 5,600-acre Mayflower Mountain Resort in 2021 (which will also provide access to Deer Valley), Park City is poised to become the top ski destination in the American West.

Aspen, Colorado: A Contemporary Newcomer

This season, Aspen’s more traditional hotel scene receives an exciting contemporary property: the stylish W Aspen. In addition to its youthful vibe and playful, modern décor (which also nods to Aspen's history as a silver-mining town), the property's most anticipated feature is undoubtedly the WET Deck, the only rooftop space in Aspen that is open year-round. Here, locals and guests alike can enjoy aprés ski in the heated pool and hot tubs, lounging in a cabana or cozying up by the fire pits—all with 360-degree views of the slopes.

Alta, Utah: A Game-Changing Property

With a lack of snowboarders and some of the highest-quality powder in the West, Alta offers a traditional skiing experience akin to what can be found in the European Alps. Stay at the boutique Snowpine Lodge for alpine chic accommodations, easy access to the slopes and views of the iconic High Rustler (or High Boy, as the locals call it).

Jackson Hole, Wyoming: The New Hot Spot

The latest addition to Jackson Hole’s ever-growing ski scene, Caldera House opened last summer as the passion project of a dedicated owner, business mogul Wesley Edens, who has skied and climbed peaks in the area for decades. The result is a spectacularly stylish, Scandinavian-inspired hotel, a cushy members-only alpine club for residents of the Wyoming town, a revived local dining institution and a casual slope-side café that draws visitors and locals alike. With a ski-in/ski-out location at the base of the slopes in Teton Village and spacious, two- and four-bedroom suites that accommodate families and groups with ease, Caldera House is as convenient as it is chic.

Hokkaido, Japan

Niseko: Up-and-Coming Ski Center

Located on Japan’s island of Hokkaido, a two-hour flight from Tokyo, Niseko is known for having some of the finest powder snow conditions in the world. Niseko used to be a bit of a backpacker destination—the main town has long been a favorite with hardcore Australian skiers—but it is rapidly gentrifying, with lots of new luxury hotels opening, including a beautiful, sprawling, ski-in/ski-out Park Hyatt that will debut in January 2020. For now, the top property is Skye, a contemporary ski-in/ski-out hotel with a gym, onsen, spa and restaurant. The Niseko ski resort has incredibly varied terrain, making it suitable for both kids and experts. Another bonus: Niseko is a major foodie destination, so after a day on the slopes, travelers can refuel with everything from ramen and soba noodles to Michelin-starred cuisine.

Sapmi, Sweden

Riksgränsen: The Next Frontier

For the die-hard skier who has conquered all the usual places, Sapmi is the next great frontier. With just six inhabitants per square mile, the region is largely undeveloped and promises truly untouched terrain. In the ski town of Riksgränsen, which sits north of the Arctic Circle, on the border between Sweden and Norway, visitors can access over 60 skiable (and practically empty) glacial peaks by helicopter, while based at Niehku, a new, 14-bedroom mountain villa. Effortlessly cool, Niehku combines sleek Swedish design and indulgences like top-notch, locally sourced food and wine with the rugged spirit of the area. If you love properties like Deplar Farm and Sheldon Chalet, Niehku should be next on your list.

French Alps

Megève: Four Seasons Debut

In the 1920s, the tiny Alpine village of Megéve was developed into a ski resort town by Baroness Noémie de Rothschild, a fierce character and avid skier, who wanted to carve out her own retreat away from the glitzy scene of St. Moritz. The destination quickly won the hearts of Europe’s elite; however, over time, the baroness' elegant resort fell into disrepair. In December 2017, Megève received a much-needed hotel update with the opening of a brand-new Four Seasons property, which features colorful, contemporary interiors, five restaurants—including the two-Michelin-starred Le 1920—a golf course and a spa and offers helicopter “ski safaris” for heli-skiing or to access the resorts in Chamonix, Courchevel and Val d’Isère. Additionally, last December, the original Rothschild resort, Le Chalet du Mont d'Arbois, reopened under the Four Seasons brand after an extensive renovation of all the rooms and suites, which has preserved local tradition and the authentic vision of the baroness, while still delivering the utmost in luxury.

Chamonix: An Anticipated Newcomer

One of the most exciting hotels to open in the past few years, Terminel Neige Refuge is the latest creation from the Sibuet family—the boutique hoteliers behind the beautiful La Bastide de Marie and Les Fermes de Marie. Perched on the Mont-Blanc mountain range and overlooking the Mer de Glace ice cave, it occupies the old Montenvers refuge, which was built in 1880 to house exploring mountaineers. The hotel now has a quirky Alpine décor with original wood paneling and 14 suites, as well as five family rooms and one "Mountaineer Dormitory" equipped with 10 bunk beds. Terminel Neige Refuge is only accessible by the private Montenvers mountain train from Chamonix, so it is best for those who want to stay at a remote resort on the mountain (getting to town takes about 45 minutes).

Méribel: Chalet Update

A stunning new rental property in Les Trois Vallées, Chalet Alpaca sits just a few minutes’ walk from favorite slopes like Doron piste and Rond Point. The chalet sleeps 12 and is perfect for a group getaway in a private, tranquil setting. Spread over three floors, it offers six bedrooms, all of which feature a contemporary décor that makes use of natural materials like oak, stone and wool. The chalet also has a large sitting room, library, bar, dining room, cinema, game room, spa, climbing wall and gym, as well as several wood-burning fireplaces.

Indagare Tip: Méribel is located close to Courchevel but provides a quieter home base for those who are not interested in a see-and-be-seen scene.

Swiss Alps

Gstaad: Chic New Addresses

Known for its legendary list of über-glamorous vacationers, from Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton to Madonna, Gstaad is as much about strutting your stuff aprés-ski as it is about showing off on the slopes. The opening of two new hotels has given this historic destination a fresh update:

With a young, playful vibe crafted by designer Erik Nissen Johansen, HUUS Gstaad offers an alternative to the more traditional hotels that dominate in the area. In addition to the quirky, Art-Deco-inspired décor, guests will delight in the lodge's cozy living room, complete with an extensive library, as well as its inventive restaurant offerings, which include a separate chalet dedicated to fondue and the very first tapas restaurant in Gstaad.

Ultima Gstaad, a collection of 11 suites and six chalets, opened three years ago to great fanfare. The resort blends the social environment of a hotel with the intimate comfort and charm of a private home, and the rooms combine edgy, modern décor with a classic, rustic feel. The chalet residences include two, three or four bedrooms, a dining room, a lounge and private chef services. All hotel guests can access the cinema, wellness center, classic French George Blanc restaurant and the wine cellar.

The Italian Dolomites

South Tyrol: Under-the-Radar Haven

Despite its romantic charm, delicious cuisine, jaw-dropping landscapes and sophisticated luxury hotels, the Italian Dolomites continues to be a lesser-visited ski destination compared to its neighbors, the French and Swiss Alps—but travelers in-the-know will head here this winter for an elegant and relaxed getaway. Top ski escapes in the Dolomites include the stylish spa and wellness retreats Rosapetra in Cortina, Forestis in South Tyrol and Gardena Grödnerhof in Ortisei. The property offers access to miles of pristine powder (where guests can also go ice-climbing and snow-shoeing), the town of Merano for shopping and gourmet restaurants, a buzzy clubhouse with a bar, cinema and outdoor terrace for aprés ski and a vast wellness center specializing in hydrotherapy, with gorgeous lake views.

Where No News Is Good News: St. Moritz & Courchevel

St. Moritz literally invented winter tourism: In the 1860s, a local hotelier invited British summer tourists to return in colder months, promising to reimburse their travels if they were disappointed (they weren’t). The sun-kissed Alpine village is home to a clutch of beloved grand-dame hotels—archetypes for what true ski luxury should look like—and hosts polo matches on its frozen lake every winter. And while St. Moritz is a go-to for timeless glamor, Courchevel is a more recent entrant onto to the jet-setting skier's map, being planned only in the 1940s. It’s the crown jewel of Les Trois Vallées, the largest linked ski area in the world, and attracts A-listers to its beautiful hotels and vibrant dining scene.

Contact Indagare to plan a ski trip to one of these stylish ski resorts and lodges. Our specialists will match you with the best property for you and tailor a winter itinerary for your interests.

Published onDecember 2, 2019

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