As much as we love a hotel with a spa or star-spangled restaurant, it’s proximity to the piste that really matters.
Putting you in schussing distance of alpine adventure, doorstep-skiing’s when you just want to get up and go.
'Doorstep skiing' conjures images of opening a front door, extending a leg and gliding straight onto a piste. And while this dream is reality in a lot of ski hotels, there can be a bit more to it than that. Hotels anywhere up to 250m from a run use the term; others are moments from a lift rather than the slopes.
Follow these tips to finding your perfect piste-side pad > >
1. Know your level
The doorstep label's so general; the nearest run to your hotel could be a black – one man's morning thrill, another's waking nightmare – so you need to tread carefully here. Most with “skiing to the door” are accessed via “unpisted track”, a short dash - mostly manageable for a good skier, which might vary wildly with snow conditions. Even when access is to a set of lifts rather than a run, it's worth finding out what colours the trails at the top are - in Alpe d'Huez having doorstep access to the GDE Sure lift's no good when you need the Les Bergers beginners area on the opposite side…
2. Find out the figures
Pay close attention to the number of meters yours is from a piste or a lift, and how hilly the walk is. 50m might feel like a trek for tired legs in ski boots if it's an uphill climb, where 150m of flat could be a lot more manageable. If you can't find the details, ask our experts to do some digging.
3. Can't live without doorstep skiing?
We're the first to admit – after a week staying piste-side, anything further out sounds like a drag. But if you find a fantastic place that's not on the piste, a short morning commute isn't so bad – especially if you book ski lockers. Leaving skis, poles and boots at the lifts overnight and walking to and fro in comfier shoes makes a mighty difference (and often lockers come free with ski hire).
4. Widen the search
If you have a daily school run to be on time for, proximity to a lesson meeting point will be invaluable. And there are lots of benefits to staying closer to the action in town… Particularly if you're staying with non-skiers, or want to make the most of the night life.
Other good options are hotels with their own shuttle service - these deliver you fresh to all the main ski spots, without the chaos of the public ski buses.
5. Pick a purpose built resort
Not all resorts were created equal in the ski in / ski out stakes. If ease of access is important to you, purpose-built snow sanctuaries like Avoriaz, Flaine, La Plagne and Val Thorens are going to have much more to offer than lower places that look pretty. See our top 10 resorts for doorstep skiing here.
|Club Med Meribel Le Chalet||4 tridents||Meribel||France||34||Ski from the door into the 3 Valleys|
|Hotel Pic Blanc||4||Alpe d’Huez||France||92||Opposite the lifts, ski school meeting point & beginner slopes|
|Hotel Hermitage||3||Sauze d’Oulx||Italy||26||On the main slope back to the resort, opposite the chairlift|
|Club Med Tignes Val Claret||4 tridents||Tignes||France||229||Ski to the hotel door|
|Hotel Vancouver||3||La Plagne||France||42||Piste-side|
|Hotel Bristol||3||Saas Fee||Switzerland||19||Ski in/out, opposite slopes and ski school meeting point|
|Club Med Aime La Plagne||3 tridents||La Plagne||France||243||Ski to the door|
|Hotel Koh-I Nor||5||Val Thorens||France||63||At the top of the resort, ski in & out|
|Hotel Club Les Bergers||3||Alpe d’Huez||France||194||Ski in access – at the foot of the slopes & near lifts|
|Club Med La Plagne 2100||4 tridents||La Plagne||France||326||At the foot of the slopes|
|Hotel Village Montana Le Lac||4||Tignes||France||79||On the slopeside|
|Hotel Les Grand Rousses||4||Alpe d’Huez||France||52||Ski in/out, next to drag lift & opposite ski life|
|Hotel Ducs de Savoie||3||Courchevel||France||71||In Jardin Alpin with direct access to slopes|
|Hotel Des Dromonts||4||Avoriaz||France||34||Ski in, Ski out onto Portes du Soleil|
|Club Med Meribel Antares||4 tridents||Meribel||France||70||Mountainside location|
|Hotel Jenewein||4||Obergurgl||Austria||40||Ski in/out opposite gondola, next to ski school meeting place|
|Hotel Les Cimes du Soleil||4||Avoriaz||France||252||Ski in, ski out onto the Portes du Soleil|
|Hotel Arlberg||5||Lech||Austria||52||Can ski from & to the door|
|Taj-I Mah||5||Les Arcs||France||48||Ski in/out location with lifts & ski school meeting point opposite|
|Waldorf Astoria Park City||5||Park City||USA||175||Ski-in hotel at the foot of the mountain|
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.