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HindustanTimes Thu,10 Jul 2014

Top ski spots in Europe and North America

AFP   January 14, 2013
First Published: 15:44 IST(14/1/2013) | Last Updated: 16:36 IST(14/1/2013)

As many find themselves on ski holidays this month, a roundup of some of the most luxurious and sought-after ski resorts across North America and Europe.

Aspen (USA)
The Aspen slopes in Colorado comprise in fact four ski resorts. Many US celebrities regularly enjoy the Aspen snow like Michael Douglas. A few weeks back, hotel heiress Paris Hilton as well as Antonio Banderas showed off their skiing skills on some of the 94 slopes.

Vail (USA)
This Colorado resort, which competes with world-renowned Aspen, presents itself as the US's biggest. VIP travelers can opt for a room at the local Ritz-Carlton, for about $1,750 a night (€1,330).

Gstaad (Switzerland)
Nested on a 1,050m mountain slope, the Swiss village of Gstaad bills itself as a haven of discretion for the affluent. After a day spent on the slopes, holiday-makers can book a room at Alpina Gstaad, one of the oldest and poshest hotels on site, from €703 to €17,370 a night.

Saint-Moritz (Switzerland)
Saint-Moritz is one of Switzerland's oldest resorts. Many luxury hotels host the world elite during ski season. The best-known five star accommodations of the spot include Badrutt's Palace Hotel, Carlton, Kempinski Grand Hotel des Bains and Kulm Hotel.

Zermatt (Switzerland)
The environmentally friendly Swiss resort, where cars are banned, offers a great view on the famous Matterhorn mountain. VIP holiday-makers such as Phil Collins or Robbie Williams often take ski vacations here. Mont Cervin Palace, whose name is drawn from the French name of the Matterhorn, is a favorite among the international elite.

Courchevel (France)
The Savoy resort is one of the most expensive in France. It hosts a wide range of luxurious hotels, such as world-famous Cheval Blanc, ranked as one of France's hotel palaces, owned by LVMH and les Airelles.

Megève (France)
Megève is also a beloved resort for wealthy tourists who can opt for a room in high-end hotels such as the Alpaga. Skiers with a taste for gourmet cuisine will also be able to treat themselves with an after-ski three-Michelin-star meal at Flocons de sel, concocted by French chef Emmanuel Renaut.

Whistler Blackcomb (Canada)
The US press often refers to Whistler as "the best North American resort". The site hosted an important part of the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics.

Cortina d'Ampezzo (Italy)
The Italian elite meets every winter in this resort, considered the oldest of the country. Its slopes and mountains featured in many films, such as Bond's For Your Eyes Only, in 1981. The most sought-after five-star hotel, the Cristallo Hotel Spa & Golf, is a favorite spot for the regular clientele.

Kitzbühel (Austria)
The "Pearl of the Alps" is the oldest Austrian ski resort. Five-star hotels are scattered throughout the village, such as Kempinski Hotel Das Tirol and the Tennerhof Hotel.


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