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Thursday October 27, 2016 - Email this article to a friend

Val d'Isere won the coveted title of Ski Resort of the Year at the World Snow Awards. Crystal Ski was named as the No1 UK tour operators & Jenny Jones takes the lifetime achievement award.

The awards recognises the best of the best in the skiing and snowboarding.

It has now been taking place for 5-years and is widely recognised as the leading awards within the UK snowsports industry.

There were 22 awards, 167 entries, 106 shortlisted entries, 4 awards chosen by public vote and 500 skis tested.

Val d'Isere has seen a host of improvement in recent years and next season sees the Solaise area completely re-developed.

It is one of the most popular resorts with the British who make up almost 40% of its visitors.

"It is a team award and recognises the hard work we have put in over the last few years.  We would have been happy to have won just one award, but to have won three is amazing, it's crazy!" said the director of marketing for Val d'Isere, Justine Mathé.

Justine Mather, 3-time winnerJustine Mathé, 3-time winner

















As well as Ski Resort of the Year it takes the title as the best European Resort of the Year and Après  Resort of the Year.

In the latter category it pipped the Swiss resort of Verbier to the post.

Val d'Isere, FranceVal d'Isere, France















The Best UK Snowsports operator is Crystal Ski and the best UK chalet company is Treeline chalets.

The new head of Crystal, Chris Logan, collected the award with the purchasing director, Gordon Ritter.

Logan and RitterLogan and Ritter
















"We are delighted that Crystal has won this award for the third time as customer experience is incredibly important to us. We thank all our customers and the readers who voted for us," Chris Logan.

For further information on Crystal Ski, the largest UK ski operator, then see here.

Meribel in Les3Vallees is announced as Family Resort of the Year.

See here for further details on the resort and its family appeal.

Meribel, FranceMeribel, France












Family fun in MeribelFamily fun in Meribel















Saint Martin de Belleville is Gastronomic Resort of the Year.

See here for further information on its restaurants.

Lunch in St Martin de Belleville Lunch in St Martin de Belleville















The award was collected by Paddy Daly.

Paddy DalyPaddy Daly
















Some are chosen by a panel of experts and others go out to vote by the general public.

Among the judges are the editor of Telegraph Ski, Henry Druce, Warren Smith from the Warren Smith Ski Academy, Frank McCusker from the Ski Club of Great Britain, Ian Davis from Neilson and PlanetSKI's editor & founder, James Cove.

The gongs were handed out this afternoon at the London Ski & Snowboard Show by Henry Druce.

Henry Druce hands out awardsHenry Druce hands out awards




















The North American Resort of the Year is Panorama Mountain Resort.

For an earlier PlanetSKI article on how the judges reach their decisions then see here as James Cove gives the view from around the judgement table.

The JudgesThe Judges















The judges also award a Lifetime Achievement Award and this year it goes to Jenny Jones.

Jenny JonesJenny Jones
















PlanetSKI asked Jenny what it was like to win the lifetime achievement award:
"It feels like - does that officially mean I'm old?  I don't feel that I have lived a lifetime yet, but I am very grateful for the award, and to be recognised for my achievements has made me very chuffed.

"Thank you to everybody in the industry for your support.
"I'm going to crack on, keep on snowboarding but I finished competing a long time ago and am now coaching."
Jenny runs "Workshops by Jenny Jones" and is leading a trip to Japan this season and to Sainte Foy in the French Alps.

She took bronze medal in the snowboard slopestyle at Sochi and has since been working tirelessly to promote and develop snowsports.

Jenny Jones takes GB/s first medal on snowJenny Jones takes GB's first medal on snow














See here for our article from Sochi as she won and our look ahead to what it might mean.

Here are the full results that include Snow+Rock as the Best UK Snowsports Retailer and the Nordica Enforcer 93 as the best ski and the K2 Party Platter as the best snowboard.

Congratulations to all!




Runner Up / Commended







Best Ski

Nordica Enforcer 93




Best Women's Ski

Völkl 100 Eight W




Best Ski Manufacturer





Best Snowboard

K2 Party Platter




Best Women's Snowboard

Capita Space Metal Fantasy




Best Snowboard Manufacturer










European Resort of the Year

Val d'Isère




North American Resort of the Year

Panorama Mountain Resort




Ski Resort of the Year

Val d'Isère




Family Resort of the Year





Après Resort of the Year

Val d'Isère




Gastronomic Resort of the Year

Saint Martin de Belleville









Best UK Chalet Company

Treeline Chalets


Le Ski


Best UK Snowsports Tour Operator

Crystal Ski Holidays


Non Stop Ski & Snowboard


Best Specialist Travel Agent

Ski Line




Best Snowsports School

MINT Snowboarding









Best UK Snowsports Retailer










Best Clothing Manufacturer





Best Technologogical Innovation



Fat Map


Best Safety Equipment Manufacturer





Best Eyewear Manufacturer










Lifetime Achievement Award

Jenny Jones




Congratulations to all and here is the full list with the official reasons as to why the winners stand out.

Best UK Snowsports Tour Operator: Crystal Ski Holidays

Britain's biggest tour operator, which features over 130 resorts across Europe, North America and Japan, emerged victorious. They just pipped last year's winner, Non Stop Ski & Snowboard, to the post.

Best Snowsports School: MINT Snowboarding

Olympic medallist Jenny Jones says of MINT: "Tammy is an incredibly passionate snowboard instructor. Combine this with her technical knowledge and years of experience and there's no doubt you will come away having noticeably progressed your snowboarding and had a flippin' rad day!" This ethos runs throughout Morzine-based snowboard school.

Best UK Snowsports Retailer: Snow+Rock

Founded in 1982 with one store in London, Snow+Rock has since expanded to 21 outlets across the country and established an excellent reputation for offering top quality kit with excellent in-store service.

Best UK Chalet Company: Treeline Chalets

The winner for the third year running is catered and self-catering Morzine operator Treeline Chalets. They beat French specialist Le Ski into the top spot by just 30 votes.

Award decided by independent research

Best Specialist Travel Agent: Ski Line

This independent ABTA travel agent works with 189 different ski holiday suppliers and tour operators.

Our independent researchers were particularly impressed with the attractive and clear website, live feed service, and callback request facility.

Enquiries were dealt with efficiently with very good recommendations.

Best Ski awards
These were decided on by The Telegraph Ski test team after trying hundreds of pairs last season.

Best Ski: Enforcer 93s from Nordica

Our testers summed up this freeride advanced ski as "allowing you to drive through turns on piste, where they're super solid in fast carves, and charge hard off piste. Nippy and lively, they hold a great edge and are very supportive when cranked up."

Best Women's Ski Völkl: 100 Eight W

This freeride advanced ski was describe by our testers as very consistent and smooth at speed, plus easy to get on an edge and power out of the turn. Superb off piste, they glide through powder, and get you out of trouble in crud and chopped up snow.

Best Ski Manufacturer: Völkl

This manufacturer is a clear winner this year with nine of their skis winning best on test across various categories.

Best Snowboard awards
These were based on results from the Spring Break snowboard test in Kaunertal.

Best Snowboard: K2 Party Platter

Short and squat, this snowboard packs the volume of a much longer board into an extremely small package, giving incredible manoeuvrability and seeing-is-believing levels of float.

Best Women's Snowboard: Capita Space Metal Fantasy

This board is by far the lowest priced model in this year's selection, but what it might lack in high-end features it more than makes up for simply by being an absolute hoot to go snowboarding on.

Best Snowboard Manufacturer: Salomon

As ever, the Best Manufacturer award was hotly contested, but the winner pipped rivals like K2 and Burton to the post because of some progressive new designs and highly affordable pricing across the (ahem) board. It also won consistently positive reviews, whether for old stalwarts like the Assassin or for brand new models like The Ultimate Ride and the Rumblefish.

Best resorts
Decided on by a panel of industry experts.

European Resort of the Year: Val d'Isère

A new 10-person gondola with heated seats and wifi that can carry 3,600 people replaces a cable car and chairlift, greatly increasing access to the Solaise area. There's also a new beginner area and day lodge at the top of the gondola including a picnic area with mircrowaves and kids' area with cushions and a TV showing cartoons.

North American Resort of the Year: Panorama Mountain Resort

This Canadian destination has opened up 120 acres of terrain in previously difficult to access areas. There's also a new groomed trail that has made terrain previously only accessible via heliskiing possible to explore. On top of all of that the resort is completely revamping the whole of its base area.

Family Resort of the Year: Méribel

This French resort consistently ranks very highly as a family destination. And they've made it even better with a host of developments such as a new terrain park for for all levels, extended a dedicated fun area for kids, the Yeti Park, with a zip-wire, toboggans and igloos, and created a dedicated picnic room and introduced night sledding.

Après Resort of the Year: Val d'Isère

This was a tough one to call, with Verbier coming a close second - but new openings like Cocorico après bar with live bands, Ski Gallery and Fondue factory for families as well as firm favourites like the Folie Douce, Dicks T bar and Doudoune made this year's winner Val d'Isère.

Gastronomic Resort of the Year: Saint Martin de Belleville

This small resort in the Trois Vallées is chock full of amazing restaurants including La Bouitte. The father and son team behind this three-Michelin star restaurant have recently opened a new gourmet bistro on the slopes.

Ski Resort of the Year: Val d'Isère

There was a very clear winner this year for the significant investment the resort has made to transform the experience of visitors.

Best Clothing and Equipment Awards

Best Clothing Manufacturer: KJUS

This is for a very precise layering system, called 7sphere, which comes in its own box. Different combinations ensure the same kit system is equally at home in extreme cold and sunny conditions.

Best Technologogical Innovation: Arc'teryx

This is for the Procline Carbon Lite Boot, which combines all of the features of a classic alpine climbing boot with those of a lightweight ski mountaineering one to create a new benchmark of agility and lightness for mixed ice/rock ascents with unmatched support and power for technical ski descents.

Best Safety Equipment Manufacturer: Arc'teryx

Unlike traditional compressed air cylinder airbag systems that are limited to one deployment per charged cylinder, The Voltair Airbag System is powered by a heavy-duty rechargeable battery that allows the user to deploy the air bag multiple times.

Best Eyewear Manufacturer: Atomic Marker

The judges were particularly impressed by the way you change the lense of these winning goggles, Revent Q.

When the conditions change, you click the lens out and simply click a new one in without taking the goggle off your face. Also the goggles feature Live Fit technology that moulds to your face and allows a snug fit.

Lifetime Achievement Award: Jenny Jones

This professional snowboarder became the first Briton to win an Olympic medal in a snow event after scoring bronze in slopestyle at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi.

It's the crowning moment of a stellar snowboarding career which has also seen Jenny Jones become the first UK athlete to win an X Games gold medal and then go on to win two more.

Her bubbly and infectious enthusiasm means that following her Olympic success she has become known far beyond the boundaries of snowboarding.

World Snow AwardsWorld Snow Awards















See here for the main PlanetSKI news page with all the latest stories from the world of snowsports.

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