For the first time in France since 1962, Val d'Isere is hosting the Alpine World Ski Championships whiich will be held from 2 - 15 February 2009 on the opposing slopes of the Bellevarde and Solaise mountains.
For the new season (2008-09) which opens on 29 November there will be special holiday offers on hotel accommodation and ski passes as well as equipment tests. Stunning lights, Father Christmas and a Christmas Market should entice early season enthuisasts to the resort where there will be 2 x 4* L/hotels; 6 4* hotels and the opening of a new 51-room establishment - L'Avenue Lodge; together with 11 3* hotels and a large number of quality residences and chalets so skiers will enjoy plenty of choice. Altogether Val d'Isere provides 28,000 tourist beds which works out at an impressive 2 million beds occupied during the winter!
The village of Val d'Isere is also entirely re-thinking the lighting decoration of the resort and will be encouraging hoteliers, shop owners and private residents to follow their lead by illuminating the entire village in white. A newly designed 1200 sq m ice rink that resembles a frozen lake will be attractively landscaped and discreetly lit to blend perfectly into the centre of the snow. A 6-man chairlift - Les Marmpttes - will provide a much-needed link between the Las Daille.
The resort of Val d'Isere, at the top end of the Tarentaise, has long been a favourite with the British winter sports enthusiasts as it enjoys a long season from early December through to the end of April because of the diversity of piste on offer.
There are already 90 lifts giving access to heights of over 3500m and used by over one million annual visitors who can enjoy 154 different downhill runs and new this winter has been the high speed 6-seater chair which has a capacity of 3000 skiers an hour. This now enables the Glaciers summit to be accessed in just six minutes instead of the previous 13 minutes! The resort's 154 slopes provide 22 green; 61 blue; 46 red and 25 black so plenty of choice whatever level of skier you are.
The high speed Bellevarde Face cable car has a capacity of 2,600 persons an hour. It is unique as the cable car relies on just three pylons to enable it to reach the summit at an altitude of 2,700m.
The Laisinant chair lift has been described as something of a "mini revolution" because it means you can now get onto the Solaise area from the Laisinant which saves a huge amount of time each morning and avoids the previous use of various lifts to reach the same ski slopes!
Not only does Val d'Isere and the resort of Tignes - to which it is linked - enjoy a long season but considerable investment continues to be made in ensuring winter sports enthusiasts enjoy the very best of facilities.
When you have finished skiing or perhaps fancy taking an afternoon off, then Val d'Isere now offers Husky sleigh rides with professional "mushers". You can travel at speeds of up to 60km/ph on a sledge drawn by as many as 12 huskies and enjoy the exhilaration and excitement usually reserved for those who venture to the "Far North"!
A new 4* hotel - The Savopie - opened for the 2007-08 winter season and is located in the centre of Val d'Isere. There are plans for a night club but no completion date for this have so far been given. The resort already offers 27,665 beds so no shortage of accommodation - or ski slopes - as the area is really vast and great value for money.
The original village of Val d'Isere dates back to the 11th century when it was a a village used by farmers where the surrounding hills offered excellent summer grazing. There are strong suggestions a village existed long before this time.
There are British pubs, excellent French bistros, creperies and pizza restaurants and night entertainment continues until the small hours, so if you like your sleep, ensure your hotel or apartment is well away from the centre of night life!
We have teamed up with PV Holidays, leading supplier of French Skiing accommodation to offer a Christmas offer of one night free with every booking.