LES3VALLEES: WHAT’S NEW FOR NEXT WINTER
11th July 2019 | Katie Bamber, Senior News Reporter
Last modified on December 19th, 2019
There’s new activities, innovative additions, upgrades, investments + food & drink spots in one of the world’s largest linked ski areas.
From Courchevel to Méribel, Saint Martin de Belleville, Les Menuires and Val Thorens, Orelle and Brides-les-Bains, it makes up one of the largest connected ski areas in the world.
So what can we expect in this coming season – Winter ’19/20 – fresh to our favourite resorts in Les3Vallees?
Let’s look at the ‘innovations’ – the brand new, forward thinking features added to keep Les3V modern and on top of the game:
Igloo Village, Val Thorens
This season, not just one igloo but an entire village of igloos will open up in VT.
What does a good eskimo-alpine village need to be complete?
An ice bar, a restaurant serving fondue and all other mountain favourites, as well as ice bedrooms to rent for a night.
Located close to the resort centre, one can access the village on skis, foot, snowmobile or by snowshoe.
Val Thorens is also expanding its range of transportation suitable for groups and those with reduced mobility.
The aim is to make journeys flow better, but, most of all, to make life easier.
Berto, a self-driving electric shuttle, made its first appearance in the resort at the beginning of March 2019.
It’ll be in full operation this season.
Carrying 15 passengers, the autonomous Berto shuttle will transport skiers and locals around the resort – for free – while protecting the environment.
This winter sees the introduction of another new vehicle – a tracked electric buggy-likemachine called Z Green.
The aim is to help passengers with reduced mobility get about the place.
There are two to rent for free from the Tourist Office for visitors with disabilities.
In addition, Z Green Park is opening.
This’ll be a snow-circuit for those who want to try out one of these machines and put its through its paces.
Also in Val Thorens, adaptive skiing programmes are on offer to make skiing accessible for everyone.
Highly trained instructors offer support to skiers with disabilities.
NEW RESORT INVESTMENT
A new €27 million multi service building in Courchevel Le Praz.
L’Alpinium will feature an indoor carpark with 500 spaces, the new Le Praz cable car station, the liftpass ticket office, ski lockers and a play area for children.
We look here at Courchevel’s updgrades and Alpinium in more detail:
Following a €15 million refurbishment last year, the Grand Thermal Spa now offers a luxury 2,700m2 treatment and pool area.
This is one of the biggest well being and spa centres in France.
What goes better than skiing and spa-ing.
And talking of…
St Martin de Belleville
The new outdoor Lys Spa opens this winter.
It’s located at heart of the village in Place du Biolley.
It will feature three hot tub jacuzzis, a sauna, a ‘chillout’ area and a herbal tea room.
Entry costs €5.
St Martin de Belleville
There’s an upgrade to the main Saint Martin lift.
The new gondolas will replace all the old cabins, increasing lift speed.
Capacity will rise to over 30% from 1,800 to 2,400 people per hour.
A €15 million refurbishment investment has been made to the Le Praz gondola – linking Le Praz to Courchevel 1850.
This will boost both lift speed and capacity.
Journey time is now just six minutes, with the new cabins seating 10 people – up from four. I
It has been moved to the new L’Alpinium building and will arrive up at the La Croisette complex in the village centre, so perfect for pedestrials wanting to discover the village of 1850 as well as skiers accessing the slopes.
The Freeride Lab in the Creux Noirs area of Courchevel will be new this winter.
At 2,705m, it is a steep high altitude area with two red runs and one black slope and access to super off piste.
The area has been redesigned:
The old chairlift has been removed and a new 350m long drag lift installed to give quick access to the top.
The red and black slopes here will no longer be pisted, so skiers and boarders can enjoy some easy access and safe off-piste powder skiing.
Snow making has doubled in recent years with the expansion of the Altiport and Combes high altitude reservoirs.
Four ski runs will benefit: Bouvreuil Rouge, Mûres Rouge, sections of Combe du Vallon, Choucas.
Two new red runs will open in the Roc de Fer area, which has mostly been blue slopes.
Le 3 D: Dimanche, Decouverte, Domaine
The three S’s in English: Sunday,
Brides-Les-Bains, in partnership with the ESF Meribel, will be running guided tours of the entire ski area every Sunday morning & afternoon.
The aim is to help guests get their bearings, as well as show off the hidden gems, based on local knowledge of ski guides.
Tickets are €25 per person.
Skiers must be intermediate level or higher.
For those who don’t ski, the resort is offering a 3 day/3 night snowshoeing and well being short break special offer.
Thursday to Sunday, half board, with 1.5 days snowshoeing in Meribel or La Tania, with an instructor and access to the Grand Spa Thermal costs from €451pp.
Ride in a piste basher complete with dinner is a new experience starting this season in Les Menuires.
Each week on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday evenings.
Up to 22 guests can take a Pisten Bully /snowcat up to Chalet du Sunny at 2,300 metres.
It’s the perfect place to watch the sun set before enjoying a fondue.
Price: €40 for children and €70 per adult.
Les Menuires is also offering drone flying lessons.
Easy Drone is running lessons using small but powerful DJI Mavic Pro or Mavic Air drones.
You pay €45 and they’ll teach you how to fly and use a drone.
And you get to keep what you shoot for free.
There are also two snow scooter experiences to book.
Easytrott is organizing tours of the snowy paths in the Plan de L’Eau area on 2WD electric snow scooters.
Picture a traditional scooter with large mountain bike tyres, hydraulic brakes and suspension and you’ll get the idea.
Costs from €55 per person for a 1.5-hour tour.
Also in Les Menuires, Roc’n Trott is also organizing downhill snow scooter rides using the 4km sledge run.
This activitiy is priced at €35 for two runs.
A new skicross circuit, The Funslope, opens this season.
It’s the equivalent of a blue run level and free to access for all ski pass holders.
Also opening this season is La Braiz, the highest cross-country skiing run in Les3Vallées.
Starting near the Plan Bouchet lift at 2,350m, this 1km tour is ideal for those who want to discover the Orelle-Les3Vallées in a different way and work on their fitness.
The trail is accessible with a pedestrian lift pass.
Saulire by night – ski in the moonlight accompanied by ski patrol.
The evening starts with a gondola ride, an aperitif and a descent by torch light.
Family Cool is a family area serviced by blue slopes.
During school holidays, entertainers will amuse children with eagle shows, ice carving, biathlon taster sessions, as well as other surprises.
What’s more… it’s FREE.
We’ll be coming back to you soon with more information on what’s new in food and drink in Les3Vallees next season.
For more information on the ski area of Les3Vallees and what’s on offer, visit the website here.