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Accommodation choice

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Planning a first family trip next Easter, I'm looking for your opinions.....

On your standard ski trip, location irrelevant, do you choose:

a) Hotel/B & B

b) Catered Chalet

c) Self-Catering Apartment

d) Other

And most importantly, why?

Thanks in advance
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
My standard ski trips don't offer chalets (I think), so it's hotel or s/c apt depending on cost. Why? My judgement of value for money.
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
The older I've got, 36 now, the more I orientate towards a hotel with wellness facilities, can't underestimate how much it helps recovery.

In my twenties I was happy with a box studio apartment with bunk beds, just as long as I could see snow from the balcony. We don't seem to get Chalet offers from Ireland unfortunately.
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I think for family trips a self catering chalet/apartment is best. Keeps a lot of options open. e.g. eating in or out or just chilling out together,board/card games watching movies in a lounge for example. Last few holidays we have gone with another family, we tended to eat out at lunchtime and cook dinner in the chalet at night or get a takeaway. Depends on the age of the kids as well and what your budget is.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
I generally want some single rooms for my group, so renting an apartment is generally best. I also really enjoy cooking and the ability to choose a particular restaurant for dinners out some nights. We prefer to have access to a pool/spa too so s/c helps keep costs reasonable, especially if the accommodation is near enough to pistes to return for lunch some days.
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For a middle aged couple (but also when younger): self catering ideally, else cheapest b& b, both with TV and preferably bath.
Why? Firstly food allergies & a picky eater. Secondly, keeping costs as low as possible. Thirdly (if can sc) can get 'home' and just chill in slippers and PJs (or equivalent) without bothering about redressing after much-needed hot bath/shower, and can eat and drink what and when we want, etc (including coffees, water, soft & alcohols), as early or late as we wish.
Not great ones for 'Apres', us; nor are we foodies. Buy beer/wine, water & coke at local supermarket and drink in room if have b&b.
Sleep, ski/board, eat/drink & repeat...
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
We normally go self catering. It fits nicely with the family nicely, where we'll eat out at lunch and generally eat in for dinner. Plus we can watch movies in the evening.

Feels like a home from home for us where we can properly relax.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
We chose Chalet Holidays before having kids, as they were cheaper than Hotels, back then.

We chose SC when the kids were small, as it was easier coping with their eating preferences...and discounts for children in Hotels/Chalets, even when sleeping in your room, were terrible (especially given how little they actually eat).

I now go to Hotels, as I like being looked after, hate shopping, cooking and cleaning when on a skiing holiday....and find Chalet Holidays have got much more expensive, especially when you add in the cost of eating out one night (for some, that's a benefit).
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Another self caterer partly on economic grounds with usually two plus ski trips per year but also just quite like the sociability of sitting down with a drink and a natter with those we've come on holiday with and preparing simple meals.
Chalets I find over cater for my tastes and one of our regular party who can't eat gluten had some pretty bad experiences with a couple of chalet companies and doesn't really like them.
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Self catering. Mainly to keep costs down, but also because I'm an unsociable Fitzwilliam and therefore find the whole chalet thing a bit weird.
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Sc chalet with hot tub and sauna
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
Self catered for cost, flexibility and the freedom of the family to sit on the sofa wearing 'jamas and eating crisps, if that's what we want to do.

For the last few years, the EoSB and SFaB have served us very well, with very comfortable apartments.

Before family life, I took whatever was a good deal, last minute; hotel, chalet, SC apartment.
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So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
Yup, as at home normally, decent hot meal sitting down at lunchtime, then a larger or smaller snack in the evening. S/c allows to control timings with youngsters (in Andorra the restaurant opens as our two would go to bed!). In Canada we get a hotel suite, which has a separate internal bedroom and kitchenette where we prepare basic breakfast and evening snacks.
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
It's changed over the years and has never involved SC (but then no kids)

First to Austria B&B hotels so can eat on the mountain at lunchtime and have evening meals at restaurants of our choice

Then went to Chalets in France for about 10 years until had a major issue with others staying at the chalet

So, went to small French hotels until the SO stopped ski-ing; now go Club Med as they have lots of wellness facilities, is all inclusive and guarentees me people to ski with

None of which is probably relevant to the OP
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Half board hotel. I can't be arsed to cook and clean on ski holidays and I like the (usually) convivial atmosphere in hotels.
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Self catering prefered. I don't like hotels - never feel comfortable and feel I'm trapped in a tiny box. Chalets are OK ish.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Really depends on the appetite / expectations / capacity / (age?) of your kids.
Went for sc when my eldest was small, but after a lengthy hiatus, if I’m skiing with him, I’d always got for somewhere including food and plenty of it, so probably catered chalet.

Proximity to piste also a factor with small people as you’ll invariably be carrying all their clobber too.
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
When the children were young, self catering with a couple of catered chalet holidays, followed by mainly catered chalet with the occasional hotel holiday. Now I have retired and no longer restricted to one week a year the logic of 2 weeks self catered for the price of 1 week catered became irresistible, allied to the fact that we can no longer consume the amount of food provided on a good catered chalet holiday.

Self catering for all the positive reasons above plus it's just so much more relaxing, eat what you want when you want, everything from the wonderful French bread and jam or cheese through convenience microwave ready meals from the local supermarket to the excellent local takeaway pizzas and burgers or one of the lovely local restaurants. Lunch snack, large lunch or nothing. Tea or dinner, just decide in the moment. None of this "if we don't get back to the chalet by 3:30 then those greedy other guests will have scoffed all the food leaving nothing" or dinner being late because people are late back from the Apres.

Unfortunately I don't consider staying in hotels a holiday no matter what facilities they have. I spent far too many nights in hotels when I was working to enjoy staying in them now.
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Self catered every time with a family - but as a single/couple catered chalet (adult only) worked well.

Key features - oven and microwave, kettle, mugs, sharp knife (I take my own)
Wifi - teens & up its imperative
TV with HDMI connection (so we can stream from the tablet)
Comfy sofas
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Lots of variable on this one.

1. Where are you going?
In my experience:
France has a lot of self-catering apartments and both catered/self-catering chalets but fewer hotels/B&Bs.
Italy and Austria has a lot of hotels/B&Bs and self-catering apartments but fewer chalets.

2. How big a group are you?
Simple family of 4:
Apartment if you like your own space.
Shared, catered chalet if you play nice with other people.
Hotel if you're like everything being done for you.
B&B if you like being able to try different restaurants each night.

Big family/groups of families:
Large apartment or either catered/self catering chalets work well.
Hotels and B&Bs less so as you're in your individual rooms or in communal spaces shared with everyone else in the place.

3. How old are your family?
Young children:
Self-catering means you can feed the children when they need feeding, not just when your acomodation says meals are served. Also easier to cover "I'm not eating that.".
Older or grown-up children:
Any option works.

4. How much do you want to spend?
Self-catering is going to be cheapest as you could just live off oats and water if you wanted to.
B&B more expensive but gives you freedom for lunch/dinner but removes the "Sugar, we were meant to pop in the shop and buy breakfast on the way home. Who wants to get up and walk to the shop?" question.
Hotel most expensive and you can feel 'obliged' to eat in the hotel because you've paid for it, even when what everyone wants is to go to the pizza place over the road.

5. How are you getting there?
Clearly this doesn't matter for catered chalet/hotel/B&B but if you're self catering the small shop in the resort will be expensive and have a limited range of produce, which can add to costs. If you're driving, either from the UK or in a hire car from the airport you can stop en route to do a big shop and save more money.
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Quote:

How much do you want to spend?
Self-catering is going to be cheapest

Not necessarily. The cost of an apartment is as long as a piece of string, as is the amount you spend on eating and drinking, whether in the apartment or out in a variety of restaurants at lunchtime and/or evenings.

I dislike hotels and would always choose the privacy and freedom of my own place, with the freedom to try a range of restaurants or to cook for myself. If money was really no object I would rent a place with its own private swimming pool, a cinema and a private chef. My son has cooked for people in places like that and in my view that really is the ultimate. Take some family and friends, talk to the chef the week before about the kind of food you like. Probably also have a vehicle and driver to take you to the slopes - clear snow, etc etc. But the cost, of course, is stupendous.
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Hotel on B&B terms, ideally with a wellness area. We like to be able to try out different restaurants for dinner and can't be bothered to cook (or clean up afterwards!) on holiday.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
I'd certainly prefer B & B to half board, in a hotel, but being able to get myself a decent hot cup of tea and a simple breakfast, whilst in my thermals, is infinitely preferable to having to put in miles round a big dining room collecting the bits and pieces I want to eat and being given a teabag and a jug of lukewarm water. Even if I do have to put my dirty dishes in a dishwasher afterwards. I also enjoy another two or three cups of freshly made tea after skiing, probably back in my thermals again. I do like a good sports massage but otherwise not interested in "wellness areas" and would always avoid anything involving soups of other people's bodily fluids mixed with quantities of unpleasant chemicals.

People are so different - my dislike of hotels is akin to my having avoided halls of residence as a student. Being in my own flat, out in the community, with good friends (I lived with the same three girls for three years), even though the flats were invariably scruffy and sometimes damp, was infinitely preferable to having my own room in a high-rise on campus. But when I spent a year in a university in the US I opted for a room in a graduate dorm, in order to have a bunch of people around me - some of whom became good friends. Indeed one of them asked me to marry him! I'd have been lonely out in a rented room in a town I knew not at all.

When doing short trips away now I would always opt for an AirBnB with its own cooking facilities rather than a hotel, particularly as I want my own bedroom, regardless of who I'm travelling with. Did that in Vienna, with my sister - we bought super food at a nearby Deli, and ate out quite a bit. The cost was a lot less than two separate rooms in an equally well-located hotel. I also had a great holiday with a family party in Turin, in a superb AirBnB apartment with four bedrooms - two of us, the grandmothers, had our own rooms. The party included three competent cooks and one brilliant cook - we ate simply but extremely well and drank Barolo (and similar quality wines) for the price of an ordinary bottle of red in a restaurant. There was a wine shop just across the pedestrianized street outside, and we asked for recommendations. And there were lots of super toys for the 4 year old. There was a huge book case full of interesting books (many in English) and hundreds of CDs. And a big Apple desk top computer and internet access. The owners were clearly in need of extra cash and decamped to one of their mothers' places when they had paying guests - it was a fascinating insight into the lives of the Torinese. No hotel could have provided a comparable experience.
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@pam w, I love a decent cup of tea, too, so I take a travel kettle and some PG Tips!
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Quote:

but if you're self catering the small shop in the resort will be expensive

LOL

Last week in gressoney I think we spent around £300 in the pissy little supermarkets (corner shops) in the villages. Almost bankrupted us.
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@TheGeneralist, If you drive, or if you can persuade a transfer/taxi (and yes I have persuaded a taxi luckily at no extra cost because he had another fare he could do) always stop off in the nearest valley supermarket before climbing up to resort.
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
TheGeneralist wrote:
Quote:

but if you're self catering the small shop in the resort will be expensive

LOL

Last week in gressoney I think we spent around £300 in the pissy little supermarkets (corner shops) in the villages. Almost bankrupted us.


I take as much as possible in the luggage so that we don't spend a fortune in resort. This year we arrive on Sunday and supermarkets enroute shut at lunchtime so it will be touch and go if we can stock up en route.
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
TheGeneralist wrote:
Quote:

but if you're self catering the small shop in the resort will be expensive

LOL

Last week in gressoney I think we spent around £300 in the pissy little supermarkets (corner shops) in the villages. Almost bankrupted us.


I take as much as possible in the luggage so that we don't spend a fortune in resort. This year we arrive on Sunday and supermarkets enroute shut at lunchtime so it will be touch and go if we can stock up en route.
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
Quote:

LOL

Last week in gressoney I think we spent around £300 in the pissy little supermarkets (corner shops) in the villages. Almost bankrupted us.


We took a bag of food with us. Curry sauce, bolognese, rice/paste, pesto, biscuits for pockets, coffee, tea, sugar and squash for example all we needed was meat, fruit and beer and patisseries/baguettes. Just making simple meals is easy and pans go in the dishwasher. My main outgoing is beer!

First time self-catering and loved it, relaxing with the children that's why we go one holiday isn't it to spend time having fun with the people we want to spend time with. All my catered chalet experiences kids have to go to bed early and I have to talk to people I really I hope I never see again! (The feeling is probably mutual wink )
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Nowadays I do all my skiing on bashes so the choice of accommodation is made by @admin. Smile
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
I now recall two trips 25 years ago when I was single, staying in chalets. On both occasions I met loudmouths who it took resistance not to punch, or at least rise to a major argument. No I don’t want to pay my hard earned to go on holiday with such people thanks.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
suffolkski wrote:
Planning a first family trip next Easter, I'm looking for your opinions.....

On your standard ski trip, location irrelevant, do you choose:

a) Hotel/B & B

b) Catered Chalet

c) Self-Catering Apartment

d) Other

And most importantly, why?

Thanks in advance


Depends on the standards and prices of each style, which is often dependent on the resort in question.


Last edited by Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person on Thu 27-02-20 13:35; edited 1 time in total
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Quote:


I now recall two trips 25 years ago when I was single, staying in chalets. On both occasions I met loudmouths who it took resistance not to punch, or at least rise to a major argument. No I don’t want to pay my hard earned to go on holiday with such people thanks.


I totally agree, you were a tad more blunt them I!
There's always someone who been to more places, riden more steep, has all the stories. NOONE CARES!!!!
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skimummk wrote:

Key feature sharp knife I take my own

I hadn't realised that knife culture had become so embedded in our society that you now have to bring your own piece to a ski holiday. Shocked Shocked Shocked
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Spent many years when divorced with a mate in catered chalets and loved meeting different people, Tuesdays with a wife in tow plus grown up kids and grandkids we go self catering and love that too, can take most non perishable food with us which keeps the cost down.
Horses for courses the only thing I need for a Good holiday is for it to be skiing the rest is minor
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T Bar wrote:
skimummk wrote:

Key feature sharp knife I take my own

I hadn't realised that knife culture had become so embedded in our society that you now have to bring your own piece to a ski holiday. Shocked Shocked Shocked


It's a consequence of the unsavoury chalet occupants, above.
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
LOTA wrote:
@pam w, I love a decent cup of tea, too, so I take a travel kettle and some PG Tips!


I have got to the stage where, once the cats have been hurded in to selecting where to stay I start scowering the photos to see if there's a kettle in the place Smile Slightly torn on my next trip - B&B in Austria with no in-room kettle, but the bar's open till 00:00 and has a full coffee machine. Do I take the travel kettle or just the tea bags and get "Heißes Wasser und etwas Milch bitte"...?


CaravanSkier wrote:
@TheGeneralist, If you drive, or if you can persuade a transfer/taxi (and yes I have persuaded a taxi luckily at no extra cost because he had another fare he could do) always stop off in the nearest valley supermarket before climbing up to resort.


We had a good French reader in our group for my last trip and did a Carrefour Drive shop online before we went. Didn't seem to be any issues paying on a UK-based credit card and made the stop painless*. Assuming you're on some kind of private transfer shoud be easier to get the driver to stop for a quick, en-route shopping pick-up...

\* At least the drive pick-up was painless. The second car managing to take 25min longer to get from Geneva to Annece so the planned quick lunch/quick run-around supermarket alcohol and treats shop/back on the road turned in to a drawn out quick lunch for us, wait for them, ask if they wanted anything picking up while we shopped/they eat and get told "No, we're fine", we shop, get back to find them gone, call them to find out...they are now going around the supermarket... Deep breath in...deep breath out. Deep breath in...deep breath out.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
Orange200 wrote:
T Bar wrote:
skimummk wrote:

Key feature sharp knife I take my own

I hadn't realised that knife culture had become so embedded in our society that you now have to bring your own piece to a ski holiday. Shocked Shocked Shocked


It's a consequence of the unsavoury chalet occupants, above.

True, probably abetter way of dealing with loudmouths than a punch.
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We've self catered when travelling as a group. Means you can get the kids to bed earlier and then enjoy the evening. Also means you can share the cooking - we travel as 2 couples and a family, and share the cooking as:
couple A, couple B, couple C - 1 night each. Girls one night, boys one night. Takeaway pizza one night, eat out one night. Works perfectly. We stick to simple stuff (bolognaise, fajitas, fish pie, jacket pots etc). We also got an online shop delivered the last 2 years - wprked a treat. It meant we only needed to top up on alcohol and bread. We took a few basics with us (tea/coffee etc).

If travelling just as a couple, we prefer to go half board in a hotel (or possibly B&B). We tend to be in Italy, where the food is tasty and 'simple' rather than overcomplicated and rich. We choose our hotels carefully - making sure there is a nice bar/lounge where you can spend a pleasant evening. We have done chalets, and they're great, but I just don't want to eat as much as they want to feed you!
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