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Visitor reviews for Samoens Ski Resort

Samoens Ratings

Overall: 4.0. Based on 40 votes and 33 reviews. Vote

Snowsure: 4.1

(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) Samoens is snowsure even in the poorest seasons.

Variety of pistes: 4.5

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

Off-piste: 3.9

(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: 4.7

(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: 4.8

(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 Samoens.

Public Transport: 3.3

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

Accommodation: 4.3

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

Cheap Rooms: 3.1

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

Luxury Hotels: 3.4

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

Ski in/Ski out: 3.2

(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: 3.8

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

Snowmaking: 3.8

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

Snow Grooming: 4.3

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

Shelter: 3.7

(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) Samoens 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 Samoens, 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: 4.2

(1) Samoens 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: 4.3

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

Crowds/Queues: 3.8

(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: 4.4

(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: 4.6

(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: 4.3

(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: 4.6

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

Advanced: 4.2

(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: 3.0

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

Cross-country: 3.9

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

Luge/Toboggan: 2.9

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

Mountain Dining: 3.9

(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: 4.4

(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: 3.2

(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: 3.4

(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: 3.8

(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: 3.9

(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): 4.1

(1) Overall, Samoens 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): 3.9

(1) Overall, Samoens 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

January 16, 2012
The 'Hodgkiss' family from Ski United Kingdom United Kingdom
First day back at work after spending a month in Samoens. Very pretty little village and as it is linked to other ski areas there is plenty to keep you busy on the slopes without the lift queues that I have seen elsewhere. The children enjoyed their ski lessons with ESF and the instructors, Cedric and Pierre, were brilliant. Eating out can be costly but we found a couple of mountain eateries that served good value yummy food. They are 'Mimi's Crepes' at Samoens 1600 and 'Le Grain de Sel' over in Flaine. Looking forward to next year's trip already.
January 05, 2012
Paul from Ski United Kingdom United Kingdom
We've been going to Samoens for 10 years or more. Unfortunately, it has now been ruined by excessive developments, with many new appartments and chalets. The lift system can no longer cope, with long queues at various bottlenecks: last year they needed to use Police to supervise the GM Express! Costs have also gone up significantly, and with regret, we are now looking to go elsewhere in future.
December 30, 2011
sherry from Ski United Kingdom United Kingdom
Just got back from Samoens for Xmas. The place is amazing, very picturesque and there was lots of snow, the skiing was very good and catered for our every need. The resort is very pricey and the restaurants are very samey , we ate in a lot and that worked for us x
May 26, 2011
Paul Grogan from Ski United Kingdom United Kingdom
I stayed in Samoens for a week in early March. Although the town is hugely pretty there are a number of ugly apartment buildings spoiling the fantastic views. The snow wasn't great but no worse than anywhere in France. I made the mistake of booking my family a transfer from Geneva and should instead have booked a hire car as you really need one to get around Samoens as the buses are infrequent and often crowded and it's probably the same price. Eating out wasn't cheap for what was often only very average food and the service was typically surly in the French manner. In one restaurant we were rudely told to leave the table at 9pm. I'd consider going back but would definitely do it differently next time.
April 07, 2011
C Gibson from Ski United Kingdom United Kingdom
I could not be more impressed with the Grand Massif area. There is an excellent range of beginner, intermediate, advanced and off-piste runs, with Samoens having some of the best beginner slopes, Morillon some of the best cruiser blues, Les Carroz the best tree-lined skiing and Flaine the best terrain for off-piste and wacky fun, like natural half-pipes, as well as amazingly wide blues and reds. The 14km Cascades run is a once-in-a-lifetime experience. The lift attendants are so on the ball, helping children and adults alike and making sure queues move quickly. The pistes are well groomed, and even this year with little snow the effort the resort made to keep the slopes in tip top condition was stunning. It is hard to find a bad restaurant (although prices are steep), and there are lots of amazing finds, like Gite de Gers. I cannot recommend it enough.
February 28, 2011
Cedric from Ski United Kingdom United Kingdom
Samoens is a pleasant village and although it has had new lifts I would avoid this resort during the half term weeks if you have beginners with your group. Queues are expected almost anywhere during the half term, unfortunately the lower lift system became overwhelmed with demand. The main lift up to the ski area opens at 8:50 and lessons tend to start at 9:15, you’ll need to be at the lift before 8:30 not to be late, be warned when booking lessons if they start at 9. The two adjacent green runs are serviced by two drag lifts and during our half term week we would normally wait longer than 15 minutes. The main blue into and out of the ski lesson area would also become overwhelmed in the afternoon with the queues for the lift taking so long people resorted to walking up the slope. All of these would not be an issue if your group are confident on reds/blues as you’ll be able to get away from the main congested areas.
January 29, 2011
Sarah from Ski France France
New lifts (from last season) at Samoens and Molliet have vastly improved the speed of transit and reduced bottlenecks. Flaine have made an error in installing seating in the Grand Plattieres gondola, which has resulted in longer queues at the base of Flaine. I don't agree that all the best skiing is at Flaine - it depends what you want. Les Carroz has the greatest number of good mountain restaurants and lots of long easy slopes. There is a good new restaurant at the Gouilles chair lift in Samoens and two excellent mountain restaurants in Morrillon (BTW, I don't do self-service!). FYI, as at 29 Jan 2011, there has been 2 solid weeks of sunshine - new snow canons installed this year have saved the day and skiing is much better than one would expect.
April 16, 2010
Chris Wilkinson from Ski United Kingdom United Kingdom
Just has a fantastic Easter skiing week in Samoens and the Grand Massif. Not sure why some people refuse to ski at Easter as we always seem to get good snow conditions, nice weather and pretty quiet skiing, and this year was no exception! The resort is definitely a bit livelier than when we skied here a few years ago, more restaurants etc and more people around, but still not over-busy. As picturesque as ever with dramatic views across to Mont-Blanc. Very pleased with the quality of the skiing & lifts. The new 6-seater Chariande Express above Samoens makes a tremendous difference to the speed you can get across to Flaine and also means you access the higher-altitude slopes in 20mins from Samoens centre, whic is pretty rapid. The pistes around Morillon and Les Carroz were great for blue/red cruising and even the off-piste was good after a fresh dump of snow. In summary, it's not the resort for drunken party groups of 20-30 yr olds, but if you want an authentic French town and excellent quality skiing you can't beat it.
March 09, 2010
Paul Cooper from Ski United Kingdom United Kingdom
Been going to Samoens for 10 years. It is a pretty French village, with access to great skiing, but unfortunately has been over-developed. The lifts no longer have capacity to cope with the demand, as the best skiing is in Flaine, and you can expect long queues to get over there in the morning, and even longer ones coming back, with a couple of serious bottlenecks. It is a great shame that the developers have been allowed to spoil what was a well kept secret!
March 27, 2009
Os Ferguson from Ski France France
Got a last minute booking to an apartment in Samoens and had a great week of skiing. Not having been before I did'nt know what to expect of the Grand Massif. The town has a new gondola which takes you up to the 1600 ski area and links to all of the Massif. Pistes are for all levels with some great runs into Morillon and Samoens. The Igloo cafe was our favourite along with a new one on Dahu run. There are ample runs at Samoens and in the week we only covered half of them. Definitely going back and going to rebook Villa Monette apartment; it's in the centre of Samoens with a ski bus outside the door. Not a crazy place for night-life but there are good restaurants, shops and unspoilt French style. Love the place.