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MOUNTAIN SERENITY IN VT - Katie Bamber, Val Thorens
Monday November 27, 2017 - Email this article to a friend

A return to the origins of mountain tourism as Val Thorens opens & concentrates on a calmer way of life. PlanetSKI chills out.



This probably comes as no surprise considering the way we live now - mindfulness, yoga, eating right and exercise are elements of modern life that are pretty hard to achieve.

Many try to take steps to slow it down at home and balance better our work-well being selves, or go on retreats (instead of holidays) to learn how to achieve a healthy mind and body.

So, doesn't it makes sense our favourite active kind of break away should mirror this too?

Skiing and snowboarding go serene.

In past years the skiing holiday & lifestyle, which is after all intended to get us out into the fresh air and doing exercise, has been more closely linked with intense apres ski scene drinking and dancing.

Little sleep and generally playing a little too hard whilst skiing at altitude all day...

Find your space - PlanetSKI in VTFind your space - PlanetSKI in VT















Headspace on the slopesHeadspace on the slopes














It's not a completely new concept for an Alpine environment; I was in Pontresina - St Moritz's more mellow neighbour resort - for a stress and technology free weekend last winter:

But for a resort that years ago was associated with good party crowds, Val Thorens has turned itself into more of a retreat with luxury accommodation, spas and modern-cool restaurants.

"It's a new programme in Val Thorens and the purpose of these activities and exercises are to help visitors to the resort de-stress and relax when they spend time here," Berangere from the tourist office tells PlanetSKI's Katie Bamber.

"A typical day would take in Supernpva for breakfast, a walk to the Cime de Caron with amazing views of the Alps, lunch up there on the hill with a yoga class in the evening.

"And there's lots that fits around the skiing too. Many activities and locations are new to the programme this year so we'll check in when the season gets going.

"It's already attracting a lot of people so it's looking good," Berangere finished positively.

What's more, this scene is accessible and affordable for everyone.

The eating, activities and wellness options:

Throughout the resort are healthier, trendy restaurants and cafes.

Fahrenheit7, the 4* hotel new last year in VT - that has just won best new ski hotel worldwide in the World Snow Awards - is a favourite for lunch.

The atmosphere is buzzing and the menu not your usual (but still well loved) cheese-filled alpine run down but is full of lobster rolls, sushi and ceviche, more asian dishes burgers and super salads.

This is a skier's lunchThis is a skier's lunch




















In the village more and more cafes are popping up offering fresh healthy cuisine and a relaxed atmosphere more like being in a quiet village in England than a busy ski resort.

Supernova is  cafe opened by a former pro-freerider that offers is a vegetarian cafe offering vitamin bursting juices and smoothies, healthy ski breakfasts, vegan dishes, local craft beer and also has a shop to peruse.

Alpine Art is a cafe-cum-art gallery with modern paintings on the walls and an eclectic menu.

The owner is in fact the daughter of one of the founders/creators of Val Thorens - (it was built in 1971).

Alpine Art also offers Qi Gong, a Chinese meditative movement class with subtle movements that when practiced can help us avoid sickness, create energy, reduce stress and become grounded and healthy.

It is run by instructor Caroline Vincent who teaches several classes a week throughout the resort.

Val Tho yogaVal Tho yoga











Yoga sessions at many of the 5* hotels, that also offer spa packages and days for those not staying at the hotel, are plentiful.

And there's yogas on the mountain.

Every day before the lifts open, yoga 'warm-up' sessions are held at 8am.

In ski boots and using your poles it is 30 minutes of pranayama, stretching and meditation to help us prepare for a day on the mountains.

Affordable? It's €5...

Spa-ing in Val Thorens needs it's own website.

Pashmina hotel located at the top of the village has an indulgent spa with outside jacuzzis and hot tubs, an indoor pool, a treatment centre and a well being coach to help us achieve this ski break serenity.

More to come as PlanetSKI checks it out...

Pashmina loungePashmina hotel lounge
















This is of course on top of the skiing.

Check out our blog updates of the weather and snow conditions here as PlanetSKI was in resort this weekend for the opening:

Alpine tourism started in Victorian times to improve mental and physical health.

Walking, ski touring, fresh air and mountains cured many ailments - it's no new idea.

It seems like a move back to these times but with a modern twist.

Modern mountain serenity. Empty pistes and snow pumping...Modern mountain serenity. Empty pistes and snow pumping...
















See here for the main PlanetSKI news page with all the latest stories from the mountains.

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