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Visitor reviews for Chatel Ski Resort

Chatel Ratings

Overall: 4.4. Based on 51 votes and 64 reviews. Vote

Snowsure: 4.5

(1) Occasionally gets enough snow for skiing, (2) is often closed due to a lack of snow, (3) occasionally suffers from a lack of snow, (4) rarely suffers from a lack of snow, (5) Chatel is snowsure even in the poorest seasons.

Variety of pistes: 4.7

(1) The ski runs are featureless and unvaried, (3) the ski runs are varied but not extensive enough for a week, (5) Chatel has diverse and interesting pistes including forests and high alpine terrain.

Off-piste: 4.3

(1) No off-piste worth mentioning, (2) off piste is out-of-bounds, (3) some varied offpiste that stays fresh for one or two days, (5) a vast array of off-piste routes that can stay untracked for several days.

Scenery: 4.8

(1) An ugly resort in a bland setting, (3) average mountain views and resort, (5) a spectacular setting and a beautiful / historic resort town.

Access: 4.2

(1) At least one overnight stop, (2) requires a whole day, (3) requires more than half a day – you may have time for a few turns (4) arrive by lunchtime and ski all afternoon, (5) there is a main airport within an hour of Chatel.

Public Transport: 3.8

(1) There are no buses or taxis to Chatel, (3) there are slow or infrequent buses / trains available, (5) getting to the resort is easy with frequent bus / train connections.

Accommodation: 4.8

(1) No places to stay in/near Chatel, (3) a few places to stay in the resort, (5) a wide variety of accommodation suitable to suit all budgets.

Cheap Rooms: 4.3

(1) No budget accommodation available, (3) just one or two hostels so book ahead, (5) several cheap hostels and pensions available.

Luxury Hotels: 4.2

(1) No luxury accommodation available, (3) just one or two luxury hotels so book ahead, (5) several up-market hotels in Chatel.

Ski in/Ski out: 4.0

(1) The ski area is located far from any accommodation, (3) a free ski bus takes you to the ski area in a short trip, (5) Ski-in ski-out accommodation is available.

Childcare: 4.4

(1) There are no child care facilities at Chatel, (5) the resort has excellent child-care facilities including at least one reasonably priced creche.

Snowmaking: 4.7

(1) Chatel relies entirely on natural snow, (3) there are just a few snow cannons, (5) there are snowmaking facilities on all pistes.

Snow Grooming: 4.7

(1) There are no snow groomers at Chatel, (3) occasionally some pistes are left ungroomed and in a poor state, (5) all the runs at Chatel are groomed daily.

Shelter: 4.3

(1) there is nowhere to ski when it is windy or visibility is bad and lifts often shut, (3) there are some trees for poor visibility but main lifts sometimes close, (5) Chatel is mostly in forest where you can ski in flat-light and windy days, lifts rarely close.

Nearby options: 4.4

(1) If snow conditions are poor at Chatel, it will be poor everywhere nearby, (3) there are good alternatives within an hours drive, (5) other locations on the same lift pass provide a rich variety of snowsure ski conditions.

Regional rating: 4.5

(1) Chatel usually has poor snow conditions compared to other resorts in region, (3) has average conditions for the region, (5) usually has the best snow conditions in the region.

Lift Staff: 4.4

(1) The staff at Chatel are rude or unhelpful, (5) lift staff at Chatel are pleasant, cheerful and eager to help.

Crowds/Queues: 4.0

(1) the resort is always busy and there are usually long lift queues, (3) it is quiet apart from occasional weekends and school holidays, (5) it is uncrowded and lift queues are very rare.

Ski Schools: 4.7

(1) No ski schools available, (2) one or two ski schools but local language only, (3) a few ski schools but book early for multi-lingual instructors, (4) plenty of ski schools and multi-lingual instructors available, (5) excellent ski schools with friendly multi-lingual ski instructors.

Hire and Repairs: 4.9

(1) Nothing can be sourced, not even ski-wax or ptex. (3) there are some ski shops but rentals need to be booked in advance, (5) good quality ski equipment can be purchased or hired and overnight repairs are possible.

Beginners: 4.5

(1) Beginners can only watch others ski and snowboard, (3) a few gentle slopes but beginners will get bored in less than a week, (3) Vast areas of gentle terrain.

Intermediates: 4.8

(1) No intermediate terrain at Chatel, (3) intermediate skiers will get bored after a few days, (5) vast areas of cruising runs.

Advanced: 4.5

(1) Nothing for advanced skiers and snowboarders, (3) enough steep terrain for a few days with some good offpiste, (5) Enough steep terrain and offpiste areas to entertain advanced skiers for at least a week.

Snow Park: 4.2

(1) Not even a kicker at Chatel, (3) average sized park quite well looked after, (5) huge park area and expertly crafted pipes, jumps and boardercross trails.

Cross-country: 4.2

(1) There is nowhere to go for cross-country skiing around Chatel, (3) there are some cross country trails available, (5) the area features many spectacular and well maintained cross-country trails.

Luge/Toboggan: 3.0

(1) No designated luge or toboggan runs, (3) there are toboggan runs that open quite often, (5) Chatel has long and well maintained luge / toboggan facilities suitable for all ages.

Mountain Dining: 4.7

(1) Nowhere to buy food by the pistes, (3) some places to eat up on the mountain but they are often busy and expensive, (5) there is a variety of excellent mountain eateries right next to the slopes to suit all budgets.

Eating: 4.7

(1) Bring your own food, there isn't even a shop. (5) A wide variety of places to eat and drink in the resort, from fast food to fancy restaurants.

Apres-Ski: 4.1

(1) Nothing to do, not even a bar, (3) there are a few bars in the resort but nothing special, (5) clubs and bars stay open until very late and have a friendly atmosphere.

Other Sports: 3.9

(1) No sports facilities at all apart from ski lifts, (3) resort has just a small public swimming pool, (5) resort has all kinds of sports facilities, including a full-size swimming pool.

Entertainment: 3.9

(1) Besides the snow and walking there is nothing to do here, (3) the non-skier will find things to do for few days but may become bored after a week, (5) the resort area is a fascinating place to visit, regardless of winter sports.

Winter Walks: 4.2

(1) Very limited walking and no snowshoe trails, (3) a couple of designated scenic walking/snowshoe trails, (5) extensive and diverse winter walking trails for all abilities.

Ski Pass Value: 4.4

(1) A 1 week ski pass is overpriced compared to the number of lifts available, (3) the ski pass is averagely priced and covers a reasonable number of lifts, (5) ski passes are excellent value for money and cover a lot of lifts spanning a big area.

Value (National): 4.4

(1) Overall, Chatel is one of the most expensive ski resorts in the country and not worth the money, (3) overall represents average value for money, (5) overall offers the best value resort in the country.

Value (Global): 4.4

(1) Overall, Chatel is one of the most expensive ski resorts in the world, (3) overall it offers pretty average value for money compared to resorts from other countries, (5) internationally the resort offers excellent value for money.

Show all 35 ratings

October 20, 2006
Susan from Ski United Kingdom United Kingdom
Christmas 2005 - My first time skiing at 45 years of age left me a little apprehensive. I had only ever viewed a ski resort in the summer. I chose Chatel as my son had been there with the school; this gave me confidence that at least he would know where he was going even if I didn't. I know I have nothing to compare it with, but I can't envisage going anywhere else. I did ski, and actually I did like the one or two drag lifts that were at Pre la Joux, and I love the winding green run from Plain Dranse to Pre la Joux. I have booked again for Christmas - not sure the snow could be improved on last year it was fantastic, and I'm not sure I'll progress beyond the lovely green run. As a complete beginner at 45 it was heavenly.
October 20, 2008
Peter Huge from Ski United Kingdom United Kingdom
We visit every February half term from West Wales. Having skied for over 30 years at places ranging from communist Bulgaria to Morzine and St. Moritz, I feel that Chatel is a great place to ski and is quite reasonable for our family of four. The trick is to rent an apartment cheaply, drive out and the whole holiday including accommodation (#350), ferry/tunnel(#70), fuel (#250), tolls (#80), lift passes (#250) for 6 days can cost little more than a thousand pounds with your own equipment. This leaves a little money to visit some of the quality small restaurants tucked away in the outlying areas and on the quieter parts of the slopes. Most of the staff are really helpful and polite. We ski Chatel only and are now considering the more expensive lift pass to explore further but 650km of pistes (plus off-piste) should be ok for most at the start. Try it and have a great time. Peter and Lyn Huge
December 05, 2008
Lin & Pip Willcocks from Ski France France
Update on the snow at Chatel - started falling 2 weeks ago and there's loads of the beautiful white stuff now. Pre La Joux lifts opened last weekend (30/11) and will open again this weekend, ahead of schedule. Open full time from 13th Dec - and the slopes are so quiet. This is the time to ski at Chatel. Over the last 30 years we've skied Stateside and Europe and Chatel is by far our favourite - beautiful village, reasonable prices and vast linked ski area to suit all levels.
February 01, 2019
Godfrey BLATCHER from Ski United Kingdom United Kingdom
So many nice things to say about Chatel. I've been coming here for several weeks a season for 18 years and the skiing has always been very good. There's a piste for everyone and plenty of off-piste opportunities too. The village is typically alpine with only a few monstrosities in terms of apartment blocks. Lots of new developments have created pressure on infrastructure but only at very busy times. There are buses to the ski areas and around the village. If you must use the car then get out early to Pre la Joux during New year and February holidays. I have even driven up there first thing and come back to the village for breakfast before going skiing so the transport back to the village is not dependent upon very busy buses. If you go out at 10.30 and then don't complain there's insufficient parking! Compared to 3 Vallees and Tignes it is quaint and much, much cheaper. I was in Meribel last week and restaurant prices were 30% higher there. Lots of different nationalities make Chatel interesting and everyone is welcoming in the shops and cafes. I'd say keep an eye on the weather because even at 1200m you can get caught out with snow conditions. If you don't have winter tyres and chains you will look an idiot. I say this as it is dumping down today and the roads are treacherous.
January 13, 2009
Paul from Ski United Kingdom United Kingdom
We stayed in Chatel for new year 2008/9, at the ClubHotel Soldanelles (Rocketski Hotel). We had heard mixed reviews of the hotel before we departed but found the hotel to be clean and tidy, the staff excellent and the food very good and very plentiful. The only word of caution here is that there were no school parties in the hotel when we stayed but there were programmed to be 100 school kids the following week - I suspect the experience would be very different for those unlucky enough to be sharing the hotel with that many children. Chatel itself is a nice little resort, if quiet. We skied in Super Chatel the first day which is OK (apart from too many drag lifts) to get those skiing legs back. Threreafter we took the ski bus up the valley to Linga where the skiing was much better and gave access to a much greater area. A tip here is to arrive early and leave early - no later than 3.30PM to avoid very large queues for the bus back which on our first day took over an hour to get home - madness. Food on the mountain is very expensive (not helped by current exchange rates) but it was too cold to contemplate picnics. All in all, Chatel is a great resort and with good snow conditions gives access to a massive area. We will definitely go back.
January 23, 2009
Garry from Ski France France
Chatel is a great resort and one of my best investments when I bought a chalet there 24 years ago. However, my one big gripe is that there is virtually no service from the lift operators other than switching the lift on, thereafter the lift operator watches whilst chairs smash into the back of peoples legs or their great speciality of looking idly on at snow encrusted chairs (of which there have been many days this year) so that by the time you reach the top of the mountain you're wet through having sat in a pile of snow for 10 minutes. It would really make a major difference to the quality of the experience at Chatel if they could provide a little bit of service.
January 26, 2009
Adam from Ski United Kingdom United Kingdom
My Family and I also stayed at the ClubHotel Soldanelles at Chatel. We were there from 9 Jan 09 for 7 days. The food was excellent, the weather fantastic and the piste conditions were very good considering there hadn't been a major dump for three or so weeks. All members of staff were helpful, polite and great fun, there were also two school parties staying at the hotel; they had different breakfast and dinner sittings so you hardly noticed they were there. The local lift pass at Chatel is good for beginners and people who enjoy drag lifts (or are scared of heights) otherwise get the full area pass. Hope to return soon.
January 27, 2009
Jenny Truff from Ski United Kingdom United Kingdom
Some friends and myself have just spent a fantastic week in Chatel at chalet L'Optraken run by Steve Hutchinson Adventures, which is a private family run business. The couple who run this chalet, Steve (Hutch) and Becky met us at the airport and looked after all our needs, from guiding us around this fantastic area which is absolutely huge, to even taking us to the bar in the evening. The food was fantastic and the chalet very clean. Nothing was a problem. This was our first time in Chatel but we are definitely going to come back, hopefully very soon
January 29, 2009
Dave Hitch from Ski United Kingdom United Kingdom
We just returned from an excellent week at Chatel and just wanted to give a little advice to other snowboarders. It was our first time there and had heard that there were lots of drag lifts. We found that the only place that they were unavoidable was in the Super Chatel and Morgins areas - which is a pity as there is a huge amount of unmolested off-piste in these sectors. The rest of the area near to Chatel (Linga, Pre La Joux and Avoriaz) is far more boarder-friendly and we were able to rack up huge amounts of slide time from the quick chair lifts. Again, all these areas have loads of easy off-piste and some of the best tree runs I have had anywhere in the Alps - though we were told by a season worker that the snow has been particularly ample this year and a lot of the lower areas have been a bit rocky and bare in previous years We will be going back for sure and hoping for a few lift upgrades.
March 26, 2009
Victoria from Ski United Kingdom United Kingdom
Chatel is a lovely resort. It is very picturesque and family friendly. I have been to Chatel for the last 5 years or so and I have always been able to find snow. It’s a great base to access the whole of the Portes du Soleil, with easy links to Avoriaz and beyond, and I have no trouble finding new places to go even after all this time. The runs are also beautiful and there is plenty of manageable fun off-piste. There is also an amazing selection of restaurants, which I am slowly working my way through. A word on drags – Yes, there are a few in the Super Chatel area, but really, they’re not horrendous and some of them get you onto some fab runs, both on and off-piste. I snowboard and ski at an average level and I have no problems.