Snowboard editor Mark Barber spent a few days at the Elevation Alps self-catering Chalet Kapa in Morzine.
Luxury. This is a word that is a word that is overused to the degree of saturation in the ski industry. But, with Elevation Alps, the word seems more than fitting.
I was returning to Morzine after a five-year absence and stayed at the Elevation Alps Chalet Kapa. I was impressed from the moment I walked in. The large living space area, comprising of an open plan lounge, kitchen and dining area, with that delicate balance of looking immaculately modern chic as well as warm and welcoming. An ideal place for everyone to congregate, chill out, and as it happened, spend a few wonderful evenings in.
We were all hungry from our travels, so sat down for a superb lunch of cheeses, pates, cold meats, quiche from the local bakery, as well cakes also sourced from the local bakery. I loved the attention to detail of the dining area. Everything from the long, chunky wooden dining table, to the spectacular chandelier and a stylish clock that wouldn’t look out of place in a chic London five-star hotel.
The lounge area had comfortable seating around a large coffee table. We spent a few evenings relaxing with a beer, having a chat, while listening to music.
The sound system is certainly worth a mention. Controlled by a touch screen controller, we could use a Bluetooth connection to pump out the tunes on the awesome and discreet speakers. In fact, we could choose what rooms throughout the chalet we wanted the music in. This is great for waking up anyone who has dared to go to bed too early!
Although you can’t blame anyone for wanting an early night as the double beds looked very comfortable. All the rooms had large TVs with plenty of choice of English speaking channels.
There was four bedrooms in total. Three large double bedrooms and two rooms together; one with a double bed and the other with four bunk beds.
All rooms had modern and stylish en-suites with walk in showers and oversized shower heads. Hot water didn’t seem to be a problem throughout our stay. Overall, the chalet can accommodate for 12 guests.
Kapa Chalet, as well as all the other Elevation Alps chalets, is self catering. This gives clients complete freedom on whether to cook their own meals, or hire a chef to come in. We chose the latter with Chez Toi coming in each evening to prepare the most incredible food I have ever had. They are a very professional, engaging and talented couple.
The location of the Kapa Chalet was convenient to both access up the mountains as well as the main stretch in town. It was far enough away to be quiet and away from the hustle and bustle, but only about a ten minute walk away from both the nearest ski lifts and the apres ski activity.
Snowboarding in Morzine
The plan for day one was to explore the local Morzine/Les Gets ski areas. Perhaps local is the wrong word to use as the area is vast and bigger than expected. With the lovely Rachael from Supreme Ski School guiding us, we first headed over to Mont Chery above Les Gets. This involved snowboarding to Les Gets and a short walk across town.
The rest of the Alps seemed on lock down due to too much snow, but Morzine had escaped almost unscathed because it is not as high as most of the other big resorts in the Alps. Having said, that, it still had snowed and we had perfectly groomed pistes that made for effortless snowboarding.
After a delightful lunch at Vaffieu, we headed over to the sunnier slopes on the other side of Morzine. Again, perfect piste conditions with almost the whole mountain to ourselves. I was very surprised to how uncrowded the pistes were as we did not have to queue at any ski lift.
On day two we headed up the Super Morzine lift and enjoyed our first off-piste powder riding. The snow was not that deep but enough to have fun.
We then explored more of the Portes Du Soleil area by heading over to the Avoriaz. One of the highlights of the day was riding through the famous ‘Stash’. The Stash is a park with a difference as all the features are cleverly crafted from wood and designed to look natural with the environment. There are many routes to explore through the trees with different features at every turn. This was great fun and I only wish we had more time to have a few more runs.
Morzine is excellent for snowboarding with a mixture treeline runs, plenty of off-piste terrain to explore, and off course the parks including The Stash. I noticed a lot more snowboarders on the slopes than some of the bigger French resorts.
To finish the day, we found some un-tracked powder fields to shred down. We simply traversed two hundred metres from the top of a chairlift and had the mountain to ourselves! The snow here was deeper but lighter so effortless riding through open fields and technical lines through trees. The last bit was a bit tricky getting back on the slope as it was a bit tight, but so worth it. This is what snowboarding is all about.
What made the snowboarding even more enjoyable is that Katherine from Elevation is also a keen snowboarder and came out with us. We had a proper posse out on the mountain!
After a long day shredding it is rude not to get a beer or two, so we headed to the Le Tremplin at the bottom of the Le Pleney lift in Morzine. Le Tremplin has a large outside area with a bar in the middle and a DJ booth. We enjoyed listening to a mix of electro swing and funk from the decks of the superb Lady Eliza. Maybe not to everyone’s musical taste but I loved it! It was the perfect end to a day on the slopes.
We also popped into Bar Robinsons, also fondly known as Robbo’s. This is a lively bar in the main stretch in Morzine and is best known for the strong beer Mutzig. Best not have too many of these if you want remember the experience the next day.
Morzine is a very convenient ski resort to get to as it is only an hour’s drive from Geneva. The Portes du Soleil is a huge ski area and Avoriaz is ideal for snowboarders, but what impressed me most was how big the local Morzine/Les Gets area is. It is a lot quieter than Avoriaz with no lift queues and ideal for hunting out fresh tracks in powder.
Elevation Alps have many chalets in Morzine and I was lucky enough to be taken on a tour of them. One thing they all have in common is that they are modern, highly luxurious, but homely.
Elevation Alps, and in particular, Katherine, helped make our to trip to Morzine a truly memorable one.
For more information Elevation Alps and their Kapa Chalet:
Mark is also the manager of Jamie Barrow (Britain’s fastest snowboarder)