GRAND HOTEL DES ALPES
Located about 1 hour south of Geneva lies Chamonix Mont Blanc, a quaint French village in the French Alps, best known for skiing thanks to it hosting the 1924 Winter Olympics. The town of Chamonix is situated in a valley surrounded by mountains, with Mont Blanc being the most famous. While these landscapes attract many skiers in the winter, Chamonix has much to offer in all four seasons, including hiking and biking, although the town itself is so lovely that many come far and wide just to enjoy the scenery, shopping, and Savoyard dishes. Chamonix Valley consists of several towns and villages, including the main town of Chamonix, Les Bossons, Le Tour, Les Praz, Argentiere, Les Houches, and Vallorcine. It can be daunting choosing which town and which hotel to stay in to maximize your time enjoying all the valley has to offer. Most people choose to stay in the town of Chamonix, as it has the most sightseeing options, restaurants, bars, shopping, and access to the slopes.
Chamonix is home to three 5 star hotels, with Grand Hotel des Alpes at the top of the list. If you are staying in Chamonix Mont Blanc, this is certainly the place to stay! Of all of the hotels I’ve stayed in internationally, Grand Hotel Des Alpes has certainly been the most luxurious, and at a reasonable rate for the value.
Above all, location is essential to making the most of your time in Chamonix. Grand Hotel Des Alpes is the only hotel located right in the center of town, just steps away from the best restaurants and shopping. As someone who is always running late for dinner reservations, or deciding I want to do a late night run for some sweets at the local patisseries, this provides the ultimate convenience. Everything you need is just steps away from the doors of Grand Hotel Des Alpes!
Grand Hotel Des Alpes was built in 1840, and then renovated most recently in 2019. Its decor and architecture captures the classic charm and elegance of the alps, with modern touches throughout. Upon arrival, you’ll find a large, cozy lobby with a fireplace and ornate woodwork lining the walls and ceilings, a bar area filled with handcrafted desserts and snacks each evening to welcome its guests back after an active day, as well as a charming spiral staircase leading up to the floors. We spent each evening before dinner in the lounge area with a cocktail in hand enjoying the ambiance.
Once you take the spiral staircase (or elevator) up to the rooms, you’ll find a spacious marble bathroom with both a shower and tub for soaking, perfect after a day full of adventure. The rooms are quite large and bright with pristine bedding and decor that captures the essence of elegant and classic French decor. The rooms are stocked with a selection of teas and tea kettle, which I definitely made use of while sitting in bed admiring the most magical view of the town, Arve river, and mountains right outside my window!
With only 30 rooms in the hotel, each guest is treated like family and gets the most personalized attention, including advice on activities in the region, sightseeing, dining, and where to ski. The receptionists even booked our ski lessons and ski lift passes for us, saving us from any stress and giving us more time to enjoy our stay. Each employee knew our names and even our breakfast orders by the end of our stay!
Start the day with the perfect petit dejeuner
Speaking of breakfast, one of my favorite parts of the hotel was the breakfast. Each morning I was greeted with a friendly smile, and got to choose from a buffet selection of fresh meats, cheeses, pastries, quiches, local yogurts, fruits, and eggs, and also had the option of ordering eggs or crepes à la carte. The food and coffee were delicious and provided the perfect start to a long day on the slopes.
Another noteworthy feature that the hotel provides is the complementary shuttle. This is a must when staying in Chamonix! Guests are able to reserve a time slot in which a shuttle which meets you near the ski storage room in the hotel and brings you as well as your ski equipment right at the base of the slopes. There are no ski-in/out hotels in Chamonix, and the mountains are all at least a 10 minute walk from one another, so this made our stay so convenient and gave us more time to spend on the mountains. It was such a luxury not having to carry our ski equipment all over town to get to the mountains, or wait in a long line for the crowded town ski bus. The hotel parking garage where the hotel shuttle meets you is another small, yet largely convenient feature of the hotel. The hotel parking is a covered, underground garage which meant that while the rest of the town was covered in a blanket of snow in the mornings, our car was perfectly clean!
Relax at the Spa
The spa is another wonderful feature of Grand Hotel Des Alpes! One of my non-negotiables for my stay in Chamonix was a spa…and I definitely made good use of it after my long and cold ski days! The spa can be booked for an hour time slot to ensure that there are no more than 8 guests in the area at a time, which provides the most serene atmosphere. It consists of a pool, jetted hot tub, steam room, sauna, salt room, and of course the option for spa treatments as well. The spa is very modern and clean, and is essential to unwind and relax after a day on the mountain!
Whether you are planning a trip to Chamonix in the Winter, Summer, or sometime in between, be sure to book Grand Hotel Des Alpes, you won’t regret it! You will feel right at home within minutes of your arrival.