Champagne powder snow, rugged Rocky views and contagious Canadian cheer: mountain life is but a dream in Canada’s greatest ski resorts.
Ski world-beating terrain, soak in hot springs and natter with the natives in cosy fireside bars. Then hit the hay in iconic hotels and do it all again tomorrow.
General consensus crowns Whistler the world’s best winter resort: this is ski country supreme, with North America’s biggest ski area, a fun-loving mountain town and all kinds of après: bars, spas, shops, sports… You name it.
Bang in the centre of a UNESCO World Heritage Site, one thing this timber and stone town isn’t short of is a jolly good view. Or a ski area - it has three - or, as it happens, good old fashioned Canadian charm. In a nutshell: Banff is brilliant.
Quite possibly the most spectacular ski resort on the planet: Rocky mountain peaks frame a magnificent frozen lake, where the iconic Fairmont Chateau sits regally and - every now and again - the Northern Lights dash overhead.
Sun and Peaks: two of the greatest things in the universe in one wonderful place. This is Canada’s second largest ski area with snowy bowls, glorious glades and everything in between – with a European style village to explore it all from.
Low key lux in wonderful wilderness is the order of the day in Jasper, where we’d happily hole up all winter long. A mammoth national park’s your playground – UNESCO listed for its natural splendour – while warm log cabins welcome you home at the end of the day.
Inside and out, Canada has some of the most spectacular hotels the mountains have ever seen.
We’re talking about truly palatial properties, packed with luxuries from grand foyers to some of the nation’s best spas – heated outdoor pools, whirlpools, mineral pools, the lot, with all treatments imaginable to relax and rejuvenate you after a day on the snow.
Often the highest end hotels have a range of restaurants, where local and organic ingredients are transformed into Canadian classics, alpine favourites, Italian food and more.
Fabulous features of bars are sweeping views of lakes and mountains and roaring fires to cosy up by, while the best baristas, sommeliers and mixologists in the business prepare your tipple.
Stay in a suite and you can wake up to sights of UNESCO-listed landscape, with features like log fires, balconies and sofas.
There are some super ski apartments – or condo’s – in the top Canadian ski resorts. Whether you cook in the comfort of your kitchen or try nearby restaurants, for afters, nothing beats putting your feet up by the fire in a property with a log burner. The best lodgings have outdoor, indoor or rooftop pools for guests to use, and some are connected to gyms and spas where you can work out or wind down.
The European concept of catered chalets doesn’t crop up much here in Canada but that’s not to say you can’t lap up the luxury of your own mountain home, with a chef preparing the food for you. A case in point: the chalets and cabins of the Fairmont Jasper Park Lodge – oozing mountain charm and moments from the Fairmont restaurants for all the nourishment you’ll need.
|Property||Resort||Favourite features||£ Price from (pp)|
|Four Seasons Resort Whistler||Whistler||Highly rated hotel, great food & après ski|
|Rimrock Resort Hotel||Banff||Stunning elevated position, spa and pool, fabulous food|
|Fairmont Chateau Whistler||Whistler||Ski in/out, outdoor pools & hot tubs,|
|Le Westin Resort & Spa Tremblant||Mont Tremblant||Central location, outdoor swimming pool|
|The Fairmont Jasper Park Lodge||Jasper||Amazingly scenic & secluded location, prestigious former guests - including the Queen|
|Westin Resort & Spa||Whistler||Prime position in the village centre, modern spa hotel, indoor & outdoor pools|
|Fairmont Tremblant||Mont Tremblant||Ski in/out, spa & indoor swimming pool|
|The Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise||Lake Louise||Iconic lakeside location, ice rink, indoor pool|
|Sun Peaks Grand||Sun Peaks||Ski in/out, 3 restaurants, super for families|
|Pan Pacific Village Centre||Whistler||Boutique hotel, outdoor pool & hot tubs||Upon request|
We update this list often but facilities can change, so if any specific feature is essential to your trip, make sure you ask us to confirm the details before you book your holiday.