Totally Frenched Out

From the blogger formerly known as Samdebretagne

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

We'll be saying goodbye to the mountains in a few short hours - it was a lovely time, with relaxing mornings and sportif afternoons. In case anyone else is thinking about a ski break, we went skiing at the Isola 2000 ski station and stayed at the Hotel Chastillon. I found a really good half-pension deal on Promovacances.com. Most ski deals are a week long, so I really liked that they offered some shorter 3-5 day séjours.
I'd read some reviews of the hotel before booking, and they all said the rooms were a bit old-fashioned but that the employees were great. Our room actually turned out to be very nice (minus the wall-to-wall carpet) - but it had balcony and a nice, big bathtub. The hotel itself is located literally on the edge of the main run and is the closest hotel from the bus stop. It has a sauna and a very small exercise room. There's also a ski location counter in the basement of the hotel, so you can literally go from your room and out the door to the slopes. The prices were also cheaper than all the other places we checked. Oh, and the hotel has free snowshoe rentals, which was nice since C doesn't ski (but you do need to bring your own winter boots).We had breakfast and dinner in the hotel every day, and the food was pretty good and varied. Drinks were included at breakfast, but not at night. Besides us, there were mostly families at the hotel, which was meant that we got the small table next to the fireplace almost every night. And the employees really were great - genuinely nice and smiley. You guys know I spend about two weeks per month in hotels, and in all my years of traveling in France, I have never stayed in a place where the people were this nice. They were so willing to help us out, answer questions, etc. So all of that definitely made up for the slightly-outdated room décor.The station itself is pretty good too - there's a cinema, a bowling alley and small gallery of shops (including a grocery store). Our hotel didn't have wifi, but there was free wifi in the gallery. What I liked best about the station though was the number of intermediate runs it had - 21 in total. I only ski about once a year, so I really appreciated that they had a ton of nice, long, not-to-difficult runs. Plus, I was expecting it to be very busy since it's the school holidays, but since it is such a family-orientated station, everyone pretty much stayed at the bottom, leaving most of the upper runs free and clear. I was usually the only person on the lift going up and would maybe cross 2 or 3 people on the way down. It was really nice and peaceful. And a little tip - the Isola 2000 website has "ventes flash" every Tuesday, usually offering 50% off your lift ticket.To get here, we took the train to Nice and then from there, there's a 2hr bus ride to the ski station. The best part is that it is subsidized by the government, so it only costs 2€ roundtrip. So all in all, it was a great vacation and I'd definitely come back here again next year.

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6 Comments:

Blogger Anon said...

Thank you for so generously sharing this travel tip. Sounds like you and C had a relaxing time.

Linda

February 24, 2010 at 5:26 PM  
Blogger Leesa said...

WOW! Sounds like a dream of a ski holiday!! Glad you had such a great time!! YAY!

February 25, 2010 at 7:12 AM  
Blogger Beth said...

That sounds ideal! I'm glad you had such a good holiday.

February 25, 2010 at 10:32 AM  
Blogger Animesh said...

Wonderful! Thanks for sharing this KSam! Glad you are having so much fun. :)

February 25, 2010 at 10:42 AM  
Blogger L Vanel said...

It sounds like the perfect ski vacation.

February 25, 2010 at 12:59 PM  
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