The image of narrow streets and wooden houses tends to place St Martin in the realm of families and an older clientele. Don’t be fooled by the quaint and sleepy look of this traditional village though. There is enough après ski activity to keep most people entertained of an evening. The Piano Bar has music two or three afternoons a week, and a quiz night too. It is certainly ‘low key’, but regular visitors will tell you that it is not unusual to stumble across a spontaneous party or two.
With only around a dozen or so bars and restaurants it won’t be suitable for those with a drink-dance-sleep-drink approach to ski holidays. The nearest nightclub is 15 minutes away in Les Menuires. For something a little calmer keep an eye on the events programme for the regular classical, jazz and blues nights organised by the parish church.
The restaurant scene
Perhaps the biggest surprise is the way in which the range of food available far exceeds the expectations of a small alpine village. In fact the resort has been shortlisted by the ‘World Snow Awards’ as ‘Gastronomic Resort of the Year’. Restaurants in St Martin can best be described as ‘quality over quantity’ and the area has an established 3-star Michelin eatery, La Bouitte.
Le Montagnard is a lovely family-run restaurant by the button lift (where you can meet their pet rabbits no less!). At La Voute and the L’eterlou you can get a decent plat du jour. And for a thoroughly authentic Savoie experience try the Ferme Auberge Chantacoucou offering rustic home-produced fare.
The restaurant industry has flourished in St Martin due to the popular trend for people staying in other Three Valleys resorts to ski here for lunch. With this in mind it may be worth booking a table if you have a particular lunch stop in mind. There are a few mountain restaurants on the slopes of St Martin, but with the resort being so accessible the better options for lunch are often found at the bottom of the piste.