29 Jan '19 in Holiday Guides
Booking a Group Ski Holiday for Skiers of Mixed Abilities
Hitting the slopes for a week of skiing or snowboarding with a group of friends is an experience like no other. Spending time together on the slopes, discovering après-ski bars, meeting up for lunch, chatting about your day by an enormous fire or over a beer in the local hotspot – there’s nothing quite like it. But how do you manage to keep everyone happy if people in your group have mixed skiing abilities?
What If Your Group Has Mixed Skiing Abilities?
Never fear! It’s totally common to have a mix of skiing abilities when you’re booking a group ski holiday. You can’t expect everyone to be a black run ninja after all. Your group may have people who’ve skied since childhood, those who’ve dabbled and those who are complete novices (and everything in between).
A good goal to have is to find a resort that not only caters for different abilities but also allows you to meet up somewhere on the mountain. A great goal to have is to find a run that you can all ski or snowboard together by the end of the week.
How to Choose the Right Ski Resort for Groups of Mixed Abilities
If your group has mixed skiing abilities, finding a resort that caters well for everyone can be a challenge – but it’s certainly not impossible!
- You need to look for a resort that offers off-piste for the hard-core among you, combined with some blues for your more leisurely intermediates, and has gentle nursery slopes where that’s easy for beginners to learn the basics and might have decent ski school.
- You may even have the odd non-skier in your group, so you need to make sure that they have something to do while everyone else hits the slopes.
- Check out the resort itself – what are the ski chalets like? Are they ski in/out? Are there plenty of restaurants and bars to keep everyone satisfied? What other entertainment is there?
Unsurprisingly, not all ski resorts can cater really well for groups with mixed abilities. Overall, we’d recommend making the starting point of your search somewhere in the Three Valleys – it’s the world’s largest ski area and that in itself provides plenty of options for different skiing levels. All resorts here are great for beginners; there are large linked runs for intermediates; and plenty of steep blacks and off-piste for the experts among you.
The Best Ski Resorts for Groups of Mixed Abilities
Here are our top recommendations for resorts which offer both gentle runs and challenging off-piste, as well as great après and activities for when you’re not on the slopes.
The centre-point of the Three Valleys, skiing and snowboarding options in Méribel are huge. Because it’s right in the centre of this vast ski area you can reach the slopes of Courchevel and Val Thorens, and easily find your way back. There’s a multitude of après-ski bars including a world-renowned Folie Douce and local favourite Le Rond Point, as well as live music most nights. Ski chalets in Méribel tend to be high quality, and non-mountain-based activities include swimming, skating, a spa and some lovely shops.
Tignes is a high-altitude resort and therefore fairly snow-sure. There’s a nursery slope right in the centre of the resort, and there are some great links between the easy, intermediate and challenging runs which makes it easier for your group to meet up on the mountain. Skiing is conveniently accessed wherever you are in Tignes – and another plus point is that it can be really good value in comparison to the neighbouring resort of Val d’Isere.
One half of the huge Paradiski ski area, Les Arcs offers superb skiing for all abilities. It links to La Plagne’s gentle pistes which are perfect for beginners; intermediates will love the woodland runs as well as some great blues; for experts there’s the hair-raising vertical Aiguille Rouge black/red run and the steep runs to Pré Saint Esprit. Off the slopes there’s dog-sledding, bob-sleighing, ice skating and snow-shoeing – plus a lot more – as well as some decent nightlife spots.
If you need a helping hand to book a group ski holiday for mixed abilities, just contact us and let’s have a chat. We can help you choose the right resort and ski chalet to suit your group.