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Solden.

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Just looking through the resort reviews and it appears the only Solden review is 2009, so I'm assuming it's changed slightly since then!.
Me and my group (advanced skiers but not pushed on off piste that much) have been going to St Anton & Ischgl twice a year for the past 6 years and we thought we might try somewhere different.
Can anyone give me a run down on what the resort/skiing/après/eating out is like in Solden lately.
We'll be going on Feb 6th for a week.
Any help is welcome.
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Can't provide much detail as I only skied Solden for one day in 2017 when we were staying in Obergurgl. Definitely more crowds in Solden vs Obergurgl but the higher up you go, the better it gets. Early March 2017, snow at the bottom was a ribbon of slushy mush vs good snow at least 500m - 600m higher at the base in Obergurgl. That said, I truly enjoyed the process of taking the early gondola up and working my way up lift after lift to get to the glaciers. Very enjoyable skiing and views were astounding! Town seems nice in some ares but too commercial in others. If you're going for a week and the snow is good, maybe use Solden as your base and visit Obergurgl/Hochgurgl and also head over to Kuhtai for a side trip that is a bit further afield. I like being able to hop around and try different mountains.
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dazman wrote:
Just looking through the resort reviews and it appears the only Solden review is 2009, so I'm assuming it's changed slightly since then!


There was the legendary review by savaloy_joy in 2010.....

http://snowheads.com/ski-forum/viewtopic.php?p=1444029&highlight=soldin#1444029


Toofy Grin
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Went to Solden for eight days in March 2013 so just a little more up-to-date than the reviews. Really liked the ski area, less enamoured with the town which is strung out along a pretty busy road (there was talk of a tunnel or bypass but I don't know whether that has come to pass). The bottleneck at the Giggijochbahn has been sorted, I understand, by a brand new state-of-the-art gondola which matches the very impressive Galaischkogelbahn. The skiing is much more extensive than the piste map would suggest and there is huge opportunity for travel between the various peaks and glaciers. Runs back home can be busy but the download option is always there if the snow conditions aren't great lower down. Went to Obergurgl for two days (horrible one one day because of the white-out and poor piste marking, a nice change for the other). The ski bus up and down the valley is extremely regular and efficient. Apres starts early and goes on late and can be as lively or as quiet as you desire. Same for eating out - plenty of choice! Very short and easy transfer from Innsbruck airport. Not many British visitors, either! Very Happy
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The village is much uglier than either St Anton or Ischgl, if that's one any consideration. Shame as Ötztal is a really beautiful valley!
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I go to Sölden at the end of most seasons because the glaciers are usually open into May. Conditions then are more summer than winter, although sometimes you can ride down to the mid station.

They have the Austrian problem with tobacco. I'm sure the "apres" will be similar to Ischgl. The road does split the town a bit, although so does the river. It's not the prettiest of villages.
Eating-wise, at the end of the winter season lots of stuff is closed so choice is limited. The Vaya hotel restaurant serves edible modern food. Corso has been serving good pizza for a long time without fuss.

On the mountain at that time of year it's cafeteria food, with only one (real) coffee machine on the entire mountain. That's at the little cafe above the gear shop at the base of the Rettenbach. That place also has decent cakes in the mornings.
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LOTA wrote:
Went to Solden for eight days in March 2013 so just a little more up-to-date than the reviews. Really liked the ski area, less enamoured with the town which is strung out along a pretty busy road (there was talk of a tunnel or bypass but I don't know whether that has come to pass). The bottleneck at the Giggijochbahn has been sorted, I understand, by a brand new state-of-the-art gondola which matches the very impressive Galaischkogelbahn. The skiing is much more extensive than the piste map would suggest and there is huge opportunity for travel between the various peaks and glaciers. Runs back home can be busy but the download option is always there if the snow conditions aren't great lower down. Went to Obergurgl for two days (horrible one one day because of the white-out and poor piste marking, a nice change for the other). The ski bus up and down the valley is extremely regular and efficient. Apres starts early and goes on late and can be as lively or as quiet as you desire. Same for eating out - plenty of choice! Very short and easy transfer from Innsbruck airport. Not many British visitors, either! Very Happy


It's deffo food for thought with that...
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Alastair Pink wrote:
dazman wrote:
Just looking through the resort reviews and it appears the only Solden review is 2009, so I'm assuming it's changed slightly since then!


There was the legendary review by savaloy_joy in 2010.....

http://snowheads.com/ski-forum/viewtopic.php?p=1444029&highlight=soldin#1444029


Toofy Grin


Well that's just sold it to me....
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We had a gentleman's trip this year (2018) at Hotel Ehrlich which was excellent (good food, nice small spa, good location between two main lifts but away from main road)

Pros would be lift system to get out of town - rent a locker recommended

the glaciers - several lifts to get there but great intermediate slopes - best glaciers Ive skied on and extraordinary long run back to town (well over 10km I think)

The James Bond restaurant from Spectre - the "tapas" was expensive but great value

Day out to Hochgurgl/Obergurgl by free bus was well worth it - and covered most of it in a day.

Negatives would be some bars in town are a bit sleazy - lap dancing anyone? and other après not as bonkers as St A or Ischgl (might be a pro for some)

We did have great weather and snow so always influences but thought it was good choice for us. snowHead
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I've only done one week there but I really liked it (was about 30 years ago though)
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Went last year and had a great time. Didn't see much of the town, but the skiiing was great. Apres was buzzing and enjoyed all the food. Lots of fast skiers on the harder runs, It's not often I'm one of the slowest on the run, crazy speed going on!
As mentioned, take a day out to Hochgurgl/Obergurgl.

Tip: from Apres ski Philip (or the umbrella bar next to it), There's a little funicular that takes you down to pretty close to the middle of the town on the main road. We didn't spot this at first and ski'd down then had a rather arduous trek back to base (via a rock bar so wasn't all bad)
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@sergeantslow, That's some great advice, thanks for taking the time....as for the negatives about the après, I do like a beer in the Kuhstall or Kitzloch (when in Ischgl) or the Mooser & Bar Anton in St Anton - but as for table dancing??...that's Schatzi in Ischgl and that's biggest dump in the resort, So as long as you can get a beer and they're playing really bad Schlager/après party music we're good.
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@Disaster, Am I right in picking up from what you're saying is that it's bit of trek to the lifts from the accommodation??
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That rather depends on where you stay? We stayed at the Hotel Sunny which is at least 50 metres from the cable car. Was about 50 Euro per night for B N B. There is a half board option and their other hotel (opposite) has a pool and sauna.
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Also meant to say, Restaurant Bubis on hill is excellent. And I'm sure they have an espresso machine.
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Ghost Dog wrote:
Also meant to say, Restaurant Bubis on hill is excellent. And I'm sure they have an espresso machine.

Quite possibly, but that section is miles away from the lifts which are actually open at that time of year.
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dazman wrote:
@Disaster, Am I right in picking up from what you're saying is that it's bit of trek to the lifts from the accommodation??


What Ghost dog said, depends. there's 2 main lifts sort of each end of the main road with one being a bit more in town.
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philwig wrote:
Ghost Dog wrote:
Also meant to say, Restaurant Bubis on hill is excellent. And I'm sure they have an espresso machine.

Quite possibly, but that section is miles away from the lifts which are actually open at that time of year.
Sorry, was thinking about OP's dates, not end of season. Mid April last time I was there I could still ski to Bubis tho. Appreciate that's not quite the end of the season in Solden.
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I have done both Ischgl and Solden. Ischgl is more of a party town, although you can still party hard in Solden. Ischgl has tunnels instead of Solden's central road.

Solden has 2 modern lifts with good free buses running along the valley (the Gais lift hardly has any queues). Ischgl is very busy to get going in the morning.

Once on the slopes Iscghl has more to offer including the Smugglers Run into Switzerland. Solden takes a bit more planning to get to where you want to go. There is only one route up to the glacier but it is worth the trip to go on the platform and a long run back down.

Solden this season has a new James Bond experience at the top of the Gais lift.

Getting back down is more 'interesting' in Ischgl. Narrow runs with apres ski skiers. In Solden the Gig lift side is busier at the end of the day, a nice option is to catch some sun on the Gais lift slopes which includes Bubis hut. The run back down is quiet plus you can call it a day on the beginners slopes which are served by a funicular back into the middle of town.
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We've been to both Ischgl and Sölden a few times - & love both.

Sölden has great skiing and, as others have said, stunning scenery. The James Bond restaurant (the Clinic in Spectre) is in a brilliant spot. We've not eaten there but have often had cheap (but tasty) coffee from the vending machine in the hut next door - with amazing views.

The town has a good selection of bars and reasonably priced restaurants and nowhere in town is really that far from a ski lift - as there is one main lift at each end of the town. There are a couple of lap dancing bars, although entry is not compulsory - so it's easy enough to give them a miss if that's not your thing. (And they are not particularly high key).

Obergurgl is also worth a trip. A day there is (I think) included on your lift pass - best to check though.

Yes - the main road runs through the town but we've not found that to be a problem. It's not like the M25. And I'm surprised that some folk think it's an ugly town. It's not as picturesque as a quaint little Austrian village - but neither is Ischgl. Then again its certainly not a concrete jungle and is a pleasant contrast to purpose built French resorts.
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I went two years ago and have been 4 or 5 times to Ischgl. I found it didn't compare both for the skiing experience or the après/nightlife. It's a long strung out ugly resort, a bit seedy and without any of the more classy establishments you get in Ischgl.

By all means try it but IMO I fear you will be slightly disappointed.
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I’ve only driven through it on the way to Obergurgl, but it wasn’t a good sight. Only snow was a ribbon of brown slush down to the village (late March) and the town itself was, as others have said, an extremely depressing ugly sprawl along a very busy road. I’m sure it’s much better up high and when you get to know the result, but we were very grateful we weren’t staying there.
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