Whether you're staying up for a Prosecco-fuelled shindig or turning in early to catch the New Year's sun rise over the Dolomites, skiing Italy will set the year off to a cracking start. There's unlikely to be any regrets for leaving the bubble and squeak at home while you're eating your way into a roomier pair of salopettes. Plus, if recent years are anything to go by, pistes should be gorgeously quiet and the snow cover will have you crying ‘Mamma Mia' like a true native...
Best Italian ski resorts at New Year for:
After a busy Christmas at home, we love that from the moment you step inside a catered chalet, all housework is taken care of. Wolf down a hearty breakfast, get back in time for afternoon tea and pile dinners high. New Year's Eve is traditionally done the social way, with a special slap up dinner for guests. Take advantage of the host's night off to eat out in a local restaurant, let's just say Carluccio isn't the only Italian with a passion for the kitchen…
We have some terrific family-orientated properties: in Gressoney, the folk at Chalet Hotel Valverde know what makes a great trip with the brood, from their services and facilities to the fact that the bouncy castles, tubing and sledding slope at the kid's snow park is under 5 minutes away.
In Selva, Chalet Soldanella is 20m from the Ciampioni gondola, making it easy-as-pie to roll out of bed and ski the famous Sella Ronda.
Cover all bases with the Club Med Chalets in Pragelato, where pretty much everything is included in the holiday, letting you focus on skiing the Milky Way.
Chalet Hotels combine chalet catering with hotel-sized properties, just the ticket for a super-sociable New Year. In the SW1 of the Dolomites, we love Cortina's Chalet Hotel Parc Victoria and another favourite for snow sure skiing is Cervinia's Chalet Hotel Dragon – now it just comes down to which view you want to wake up to on January 1st: the Cinque Torri or the mighty Matterhorn…
Hotels help make New Year ski holidays comfortable and hassle-free. With half board, there's no having to fret about booking a table on NYE as most hotels put on impressive gala dinners. Some even have their own bars if you like the sound a bottle of vino without having to stray too far from your room. On the other hand, picking a B&B gives you the chance to experience what Italy does best, and you'll find no shortage of places to eat from family-run pizzerias to Michelin star restaurants.
For something to really impress, check in to the Grand Hotel Miramonti Majestic in Cortina; they certainly mean “grand” - Elvis has stayed there... and if it's good enough for the king it's good enough for us!
When it's all about the skiing, Hotel Cristallo is slap bang in the middle of Sestriere within a minute's walk of the lift, ski school meeting point and town centre. If you've got the brood in tow, or are just after some high altitudes, Club Med in Cervinia should be on the shortlist. See if they're still including things like ski lessons, all meals and an open bar in the package.
The Kronplatz mountain has fabulous skiing and lively après; you'll find some lovely family-run hotels in its surrounding villages. See if you can book a New Year's lunch looking out over Pustertal from the huge surround-windows of the Kronrestaurant. One of our favourites is the iconic Hotel Monte Sella, only a couple of minutes from San Vigilio centre and the Skitrans Bronta gondola.
If this New Year's resolution is to watch the pennies, self-catering in Italy's one of the cheapest ways to ski. Food in Italian shops and restaurants is generally cheaper than you'll find in the other big ski nations, so even if you choose to abandon the kitchen and eat out now and again, there's a good chance you'll stick to your resolution. Often apartments are linked to local hotels, with the option to upgrade to a half-board holiday - you'll still have your own space but won't have to bother with the cooking.
The budget is sure to go further in duty-free Livigno where, staying at the Galli Apartments, you'll be right in the action, ready to spend those extra euros on the local Valtellina wine.
If the skiing's your priority, pick a ski in/ski out property like the Planibel Apartments in La Thuile, which will see you straight out to ski the Aosta Valley and back that much quicker for the town's week-long festivities (past years have seen fireworks, lantern releases and torchlight descents).
The unpopulated slopes in Bardonecchia are ideal for learners and intermediates. With a lift 200 meters from the Campo Smith Village Apartments, getting out for a New Year's morning on the 2807m Mt. Jafferau should be a breeze.
Groups chasing a party scene shouldn't be disappointed in Italy's après ski capital Sauze D'Oulx. Have a look at the no-frills Max Bar Apartments where you can fall out of your door and into Paddy McGinty's, which always has a lively crowd on the 31st.
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