We keep hearing that ski resorts are investing more and more into infrastructure developments, but what actually do these projects entail – and which ski resorts are stepping up their game? From new ‘eco’ tech to linkage projects and more, we’ve got a round up of the most exciting work going on in our top ski resorts.
Eco-friendly tech: Serre Chevalier
One of the biggest ski resorts in its region – and with a fantastic range of property – Serre Chevalier is adding another string to its bow by going green. By using photovoltaic and wind energy, as well as hydroelectricity, its powering its snow cannons and lifts in the most eco-friendly way possible. In total, 30% of the resort’s energy is generated from these sources. An exciting further development is harnessing the water from the snow cannons themselves, passing it through turbines to generate electricity.
As for reducing visitors’ impact on the environment, with a direct train from Paris to Briançon, you can ditch the hire car (and even the plane!). Digital passes are also being rolled out to eliminate the need for paper or plastic waste. The eventual aim is for the resort to become 100% sustainable.
Connecting ski areas: Andermatt
By the end of this year, Andermatt, in Switzerland, will have finished a hugely exciting, €100 million+ project to create the largest ski area in central Switzerland. It will link Andermatt with Disentis and the rest of the Sedrun ski areas. The project includes 14 new lifts and 40km more of slopes – making a total of over 180km.
The whole infrastructure development scheme is part of the wider ‘Andermatt Swiss Alps Destination’ plan, which also has seen the opening of a Radisson Blu hotel and new shops and restaurants around the Piazza Gottardo.
Public realm redevelopment: Val d’Isère
Val d’Isère is going beyond even large-scale infrastructure developments with a €200 million redevelopment of the heart of the ski village. The project, known as ‘Coin de Val’, will last around give years and will cover 22,000m2 of the resort.
Improvements will centre around replacing the Solaise area’s thirty-year-old buildings with new structures built in traditional Haute-Tarentaise materials. There will be new chalets, two luxury hotels with 900 beds, new shops, services and an American-style mid-mountain day lodge. A new restaurant will be built in the Tour de Val on Avenue Olympique, taking advantage of panoramic views over the resort.
It isn’t just buildings, however: an underground moving walkway will connect the area with the key mountain access lifts, and the infrastructure will be in place for guests to ski back in to their accommodation.
Climate change futureproofing: La Rosière
La Rosière has followed in the path of a number of ski resorts now in future-proofing against greater uncertainty over snowfall as time goes by. Two six-seater chairlifts and a whole network of red pistes opened in December 2018, helping to move the resort’s top line to a high altitude. This should help to make it more snow-sure, as well as opening up a large off-piste area.
The infrastructure development has included two new chairlifts, both six-seaters. The first, the Moulins Express, takes you from 1,935m to 2,450m and then the next one, the Mont Valaisan Express adds another three-minute journey up to 2,800m. The project has cost over €15 million euros, and comes on the back of other investments, such as a glass-bottomed walkway at Fort Express (at 2,383m).
Picking a ski resort with potential
These infrastructure developments matter immensely to anyone buying a ski property – not just because you can enjoy the benefits of them yourself – but also because it’s a good sign of a resort worth investing in. If somewhere is spending money on ‘future-proofing’ its offer, you can be confident that it won’t be left until the last minute to keep attracting visitors. And, whether you’re looking to rent out your property while you’re not there, or you want a buoyant market when you do sell, strong demand is always good news.
Once you’ve chosen your resort – perhaps you’re tempted by some of them in today’s article – the next step is to plan your property hunt and purchase. Our free country buying guides give you a comprehensive overview of the buying processes, the legalities and financial aspects. Download your free copy today to get started on your ski property purchase.