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Chalet Guide to Courchevel
A guide to finding the perfect chalet in Courchevel
A luxury ski chalet in Courchevel embodies the quintessential winter sports holiday, who hasn't dreamt of staying in the perfect chocolate-box chalet after a day on the slopes? Even better if there's a plush sofa you can snuggle up on in front of a roaring fire or an outdoor hot tub to unwind in while surrounded by deep powder fields and high snow-capped peaks. That’s exactly what staying in a chalet is all about.
Considered by many to be one of the Alps' biggest luxury ski resorts with exceptional access to the Three Valleys ski area, Courchevel is the place to come for a boutique chalet holiday in France. There are hundreds of chalets available here, offering a range of services from high-end, fully-catered luxury holidays to self-catering accommodation for short breaks. Whether it's a traditional Savoyard-style converted farmhouses or a contemporary Alpine abode, they're the perfect home away from home on your winter holiday or your summer escape to the mountains.
This guide will help you choose the perfect chalet for your holiday. Let's dive right in.
Things to consider when booking a chalet in Courchevel
When planning your break away to a chalet in the mountains, here are a few things worth thinking about before you decide what to go for.
We recommend you book your chalet as soon as possible. Chalets usually sell out quite quickly and a lot of people book as early as January for the next winter season. Book your accommodation before buying your flights or train ticket, the reason being that availability may be limited and chalet start/end dates are not always as flexible as travel options.
As for the best time to stay in a chalet, they're usually open for bookings during the winter and summer high seasons – from December to April and from June to September. However, some chalet companies may offer their chalets up for interseason rentals, especially for large parties such as company retreats or events.
How long you want to stay
Most ski chalets in Courchevel are rented on a weekly basis only. You’ll find that Saturday to Saturday rentals are most common, but increasingly with the times being as they are, dates can be flexible and some chalet companies may provide a mix of Saturday and Sunday changeovers.
Plus shorter and longer ski breaks are becoming more and more popular, so some chalet companies may be flexible on their rental dates on request. Summer chalet bookings in Courchevel are generally much more flexible on dates and length of stay, especially outside the peak months of July and August. This means that you can come for a long weekend, for ten days or for a few days mid-week more easily.
Chalet holidays are suitable for all sorts of group sizes: couples looking for a romantic escapade, families, groups of friends and even large corporate retreats, as they usually have at least two bedrooms with some offering space for up to 15 people and more. Solo travellers and couples can opt for a room in a larger catered chalet while couples looking for independence can check out the charming one-bedroom converted mazots (small wooden huts traditionally used to store valuables and food) on offer in Courchevel. However big or small your group is, you’ll need to know the exact number of people and the ages of the children coming with you on your holiday before booking.
Go shared or rent the whole thing
Many chalets in Courchevel can either be booked by the room or as a whole property. Catered chalets are more often than not rented by the room, meaning that you share the chalet and its facilities with other guests, while self-catered chalets are rented out as a whole property, exclusively for your party. Booking rooms in a shared catered chalet is a great option for small families, groups of friends and couples. Some catered chalets can also be rented out on a whole property basis for larger groups, or even if you'd just prefer private use of the chalet without using the full occupancy. To learn more about whether to choose a catered or a self-catered chalet, read below.
Know your wants and needs
There are hundreds of chalets on offer in Courchevel, some providing simple accommodation at the foot of the slopes and others boasting five-star luxury facilities. Most come with WiFi as standard, but check before you book if it's important, some have ski-to-door access and state-of-the-art boot warmers, some don't, and if you need a large terrace with breathtaking views, a cinema room, designer décor or a pet-friendly property, make sure you book as early as possible.
You'll also find that many high-end chalet companies offer concierge services who’ll take care of everything, from your ski passes to your lessons, your equipment hire, chauffeur services to take you to and from the slopes or drive you around resort, private chefs and spas with massages on demand. You're spoiled for choice in Courchevel!
Catered vs self-catered chalets in Courchevel
When booking your chalet in Courchevel, you’ll find that there are two main options: catered or self-catered. Essentially your meals are included in the price of your chalet rental or they're not.
Catered chalets in Courchevel
Catered chalets include accommodation and meals under the same roof. Generally managed by one or more chalet hosts who take care of cooking, serving and cleaning, the chalets are usually half-board and include at least breakfast and dinner in the price of your accommodation. Usually rented by the room and priced per person, they suit small families and groups of friends, as well as couples and solo travellers who want an easy, effortless holiday with no cooking or washing up involved. Some chalets have triple or family (quad) rooms available and sometimes the chalet company may rent out a catered chalet as a whole property for large groups.
- Catered chalets are the best option for those searching for a hassle-free holiday, as there’s nothing much you need to do other than enjoy your stay.
- You’ll wake up to the smell of freshly cooked breakfast, come back from skiing to homemade cake and tea, and sit down to a three or four-course dinner in the evenings.
- Chalet hosts will also clean rooms and common areas.
- The price per person of catered chalets is usually higher than that of self-catered chalets. However, you also get more bang for your buck since chalet hosts will cook your meals and clean after you.
- You will be sharing your accommodation with other people you haven't met before.
Worth noting: Chalet staff usually have one, sometimes two, evenings off during the week. When this happens, you’ll get a continental, self-service breakfast left out for you by your host, as well as afternoon tea and cake. For dinner, you’ll get the chance to sample the local restaurants. Alternatively, some companies provide self-service dinner, carefully prepared and left out for you, often in the form of a traditional Savoyarde fondue or raclette.
Self-catered chalets in Courchevel
Self-catered chalets include only the rental of the accommodation, so you need to take care of your own meals. They are ideal for those who want the chalet all to themselves, don’t mind/like cooking and ordering take away, and are happy cleaning up after themselves throughout their stay.
- Self-catered chalets are rented out as a whole property, so you get the chalet all to yourself.
- They are generally cheaper than catered chalets, which means that you'll have more cash to splash on Courchevel's great selection of restaurants.
- If you have children, fussy eaters or those with specific dietary requirements in your group, it can be easier to cater for them in the comfort of your own kitchen.
- You'll need to sort out your meals and clean up after yourself.
Worth noting: Many companies can arrange mid-stay cleans and linen/towel changes if booked in advance, and self-catering nowadays is much easier than ever thanks to the array of catering options available. Some chalet companies provide welcome packs or can arrange shopping deliveries and private chef services. And in the post-Covid world, food and drink delivery services are springing up in resorts making flexible self-catering much more of an option. Gone are the days when self-catering meant someone cooking every night of their holiday (however, someone definitely still has to load the dishwasher I'm afraid!)
Luxury chalets in Courchevel
As you may imagine, finding a luxury chalet in Courchevel is not exactly difficult as it is possibly the swankiest resort in the Alps and the destination of choice for a whole host of international celebrities.
What's included in a luxury chalet?
When we talk about luxury chalets in Courchevel, we refer to chalets boasting five-star facilities: large ski rooms with boot warmers, cinema rooms, stunning central-piece fireplaces, playstations, large chef-style kitchens, spa rooms and, of course, floor to ceiling windows so that you can soak in the views from the warmth of your living room. Luxury chalets usually come with concierge services that'll take care of everything for you, from ski passes to lessons, equipment hire, airport transfers, shuttle service to the lifts, etc. A private chef or a 24hr chauffeur can usually also be added as options.
Where can you find luxury chalets in Courchevel?
While there are luxury chalets in all areas, the most extravagant of these are to be found in Courchevel 1850 and offer glitz and glamour in abundance. State-of-the-art gyms, swimming pools with panoramic views and even private chauffeur services are the norm here. Basing yourself in Courchevel 1850 for your chalet holiday also means that you are within easy reach of the town centre with its Michelin-starred, gourmet restaurants and upmarket boutiques.
Group chalets in Courchevel
If you’re looking to organise a group or corporate ski trip, Courchevel is the perfect place to host it. A charming Alpine village with great nightlife and loads of choice when it comes to group accommodation, Courchevel has lots going on and it’s situated in one of the biggest ski areas in the world.
Where can you find large chalets for groups in Courchevel?
Your budget may ultimately decide your location but groups would do well to book a chalet in Courchevel Moriond. Self-sufficient as a village, with its own nightlife and character, Courchevel Moriond has great skiing and is within easy reach of the rest of the Three Valleys ski area as well as chic Courchevel 1850. There are plenty of large chalets here that are suitable for large groups and quality ranges from mid-budget to the extravagant.
Family chalets in Courchevel
Courchevel is really well set up for mountain-loving families, with plenty of activities for all ages and a host of family-friendly chalets.
What should you look out for when booking a chalet for your family in Courchevel?
Family holidays tend to have their own, unique requirements, the most important of which is finding a large chalet with a garden big enough to build a snowman. A family-friendly chalet is generally one that is near gentle ski slopes and ski schools, and there are loads of these in Courchevel. Where you choose to base yourself will be budget dependent but, if you’re looking for less bling and a more relaxed ambience, it may be wise to avoid Courchevel 1850. There are plenty of family-friendly chalets in the pleasant and friendly resorts of Courchevel Moriond, Courchevel Village, Le Praz and La Tania while childcare is also widely available here, leaving you free to make the most of the world’s largest ski area.
Budget chalets in Courchevel
When it comes to Courchevel, the term ‘budget’ never really makes the headlines but, despite this, options do exist for those looking for slightly cheaper chalet accommodation.
How can you save money on your Courchevel chalet?
Courchevel Moriond is where you can find chalet accommodation that is comfortable, cosy and won’t leave you bankrupt. This lively town with a friendly vibe has become increasingly popular over the years with skiers looking to make the most of the fantastic skiing on offer in the Three Valleys without having to pay central Courchevel 1850 prices.
Ski-in & ski-out chalets in Courchevel
Unlike many other Alpine resorts, finding ski-in/ski-out chalet accommodation in Courchevel is relatively easy. Most of the villages that come under the umbrella of Courchevel have lifts directly onto the pistes so, even if your chalet is not actually ski-to-the-door, you’re going to be on the ski runs pretty quickly and easily.
Where can you find ski-in & ski-out chalets in Courchevel?
Courchevel 1850 has pistes running through its streets and a high proportion of ski-in/ski-out chalets, while Courchevel Moriond and Courchevel Village are more ski-in than ski-out as the lifts are located above most of the accommodation. Of all the villages, Le Praz is perhaps the least convenient as lifts are located a short walk from the village.
Our guide on Where to Stay in Courchevel will help give you an indication of the character and feel of the different resorts. Courchevel also has plenty of self-catered apartments available to rent, take a look at our Holiday Rentals page to see what's on offer and read our guide on the best self-catered ski apartments for more information.