Snow is cold…
The best thing about summer coming to an end is that the mountains across Europe will soon (hopefully) be coated with thick layers of fresh snow.
For those of you who, like me, have been brought up skiing you’ll know a summer holiday has to be pretty special to rival one on the mountains.
Which is odd in many ways because, on paper, a ski destination should be a source of extreme panic for women everywhere.
Snow is cold. Although the weather might be hot. But even if it is hot you will fall over and land in snow. Which, as we’ve just discussed, is cold. You may end up with ice crystals on your face but you should wear sunscreen to avoid being burnt. And whether it is hot or not your body will need to be covered head to toe and thermal underwear is advised. So you’ll probably sweat like you’re wearing leather trousers in a sauna.
Eating generally involves cheese and lots of it. With side orders of red wine and bread probably. And after a few thousand calories and a severe dent in your recommended weekly alcohol units intake you’ll clip your skis back on and start again. Much to the distress of your full belly which will be sending pleading messages to your brain demanding a nap, a fire and a Sunday paper.
You’ll ignore your belly though and carry on skiing. Until the lifts close. At this point, just when you would probably swap your grandmother for half an hour in a hot tub, your friends will tell you you’re not going back to your hotel/chalet because you’re headed straight out for drinks.
Out? I hear you say in a confused tone? But I’m wearing thick unflattering clothes soaked in sweat, my face is devoid of anything approaching make up, my hair has spent the day being crushed under a helmet/hat and squeezed by goggles that have also conspired to give me weird tan lines that make me look like a panda.
But despite all this, we don’t panic. There’s something about not caring what you look like and going out in what are essentially sweaty ridiculous clothes that is rather liberating. As you’ll know if you have ever looked at photos of friends on a ski holiday, everyone looks the same. If you have too much cheese it doesn’t matter as nobody knows if you’re a size 8 or a 14. Got panda eyes? Look around, pandas are not an endangered species in ski resorts. And being dressed up to the nines is like turning up to a vegan barbecue with a sack of sausages.
Having said that my advice is to stay somewhere amazing. You’re going to earn it. With a bed worthy of a princess, a picture postcard fire and where possible somewhere you can ski in and out of. That way you might just get a soak in before Après-Ski begins in earnest.
Here’s a few ideas – and never have the adjectives small and luxury come into their own quite like they do on a trip to a ski resort.