For skiers of the world the annual challenge to find the best coverage begins almost as soon as autumn comes to an end. Great conditions create a winter wonderland while too little coverage can result in an unappealing mudbath. If you’re looking for a luxury bolthole in the mountains with almost guaranteed snow coverage then these are the Top 4 spots.
Tignes and Val d’Isere (France)
Even late in the season this part of Europe is fairly snow sure and offers a broad array of ski landscapes. Val d’Isere has north-facing slopes and Tignes has high-altitude skiing, both of which provide great terrain throughout much of the year. The lifestyle here is luxe and the chalets 5 Star – Le Chardon Mountain Lodges can take up to 69 guests over five chalets, each one indulgently furnished and discreetly serviced.
Located in Austria, Obergurgl is Europe’s highest traditional ski village, which makes it a great option for lots of snow. Spacious, open slopes running to 110km and a chic resort demonstrate why Obergurgl calls itself ‘the Diamond of the Alps.’ Obergurgl is also famous as the site of a 1930s hot air balloon crash – Auguste Piccard crashed here after taking his balloon to a record height of nearly 16,000m and was rescued by the locals. Accommodation such as The Chalet provides classic Austrian interiors and warm mountain style.
Whistler Blackcomb (Canada)
Whistler is one of the largest resort areas in the world and has an average snowfall of around 12m. This makes it one of the most exciting ski areas and also one of the most snow sure. As well as the wide selection of runs there’s also plenty of cosmopolitan entertainment, from spas to restaurants. Given the A-list clientele luxury ski chalets here are easy to come by, well positioned and beautifully designed.
Although you can’t ski at Riksgransen until April because it’s just too cold, this Swedish resort extends the season right through until June and offers some pretty unique winter sports experiences. Think skiing at midnight more than 200km north of the Arctic Circle and you have one seriously memorable trip. Given the location, snow coverage is almost guaranteed and Riksgransen has some great off-piste routes – you might even spot a reindeer.