“There are three essentials for a good ski chalet” says Al Judge, who along with his wife Kat is the joint owner of AliKats Mountain Holidays (see what they did there with their names…?).
“En-suite rooms, a hot tub and good views”. Needless to say Chalet de l’Ange in Montriond, where I’ve just spent a lovely few days, has all three. And more.
Designed by architect Herve Marullaz, this bright and airy chalet is cleverly designed to provide superb mountain views from every one of its seven en-suite rooms (it sleeps 12-14 people).
My room looked out towards the attractive village which sits on the famous Portes du Soleil circuit and is a spit away from better-known Morzine and Avoriaz.
It’s little more than ten-minutes from the slopes of Avoriaz and only five-minutes away from the bars and shops of the village, although to be honest the chalet is so warm and welcoming that after a hard day blasting around the local slopes it’s hard to drag yourself away.
The unusual sunken hot tub is a particular attraction, set in the middle of the chalet’s ground floor from where you get an eclectic mix of tropical plants rising up from beside the hot tub and glorious mountain views through the large windows.
We were indulged in our soaks by Chalet de l’Ange’s exceptional staff Frank and Morgan – cold beer or tea and cake magically appeared out of the ether as we eased muscles shocked by the early season assault upon them; a more affable and hard-working pair of hosts I’ve yet to encounter.
Dragging my noodle like limbs from the hot tub it was difficult to decide whether to chill out in my room amongst the mountain of pillows or relax in the lounge, where the original furniture and lighting courtesy of acclaimed Danish designer Poul Henningsen was especially appealing.
And things just get better at Chalet de l’Ange when it’s time for dinner. Kat is passionate about food and spends ages planning an exceptional menu using superb ingredients that caters for all tastes; as an example, even the meat eaters among our party were blown away by the Tuesday evening ‘meat free menu’ – the savoury aubergine and caramelised red onion baklava was to die for, and when you add in an unlimited and excellent array of personally selected red and white wines (primarily from the Languedoc region) you can see why no one was in any particular rush to hit the town.
We didn’t have especially good snow conditions during my stay, which I think is often the best possible test of a chalet; if you don’t feel like skiing is the chalet going to be somewhere you’re happy to hang out instead of the slopes?
In the case of Chalet de l’Ange it’s a resounding ‘yes’.
How to go there…
Alf travelled with Alikats. For more information visit www.alikats.eu or call +33 (0) 6781 04092.
Equipment rental was provided by Ski Mobile who offer ski and snowboard hire with free delivery and collection.
Transfers were provided by Alpnav Transfers who offer transfers from Geneva International Airport to the Portes du Soleil Resorts of Les Gets, Morzine and Avoriaz (transfers cost from €67.50 return based on a 4 person booking in a shared transfer).
For more information on the Morzine – Avoriaz ski area and Portes du Soleil