La Clusaz Ski Resort Guide
La Clusaz sits just west of the Swiss border and offers runs for all levels of skiers, with a special wealth of choices for intermediates. The community is friendly, appreciative of good food, and supports local recreational facilities that would be surprisingly abundant and developed for a community many times its size.
La Clusaz is only about an hour from the airport in Geneva, so more of your holiday can be spent on the slopes, rather than on the road.
Great for intermediate skiers who are into a cosier, more subdued après ski scene, or families with a variety of skill levels mostly around beginner-intermediate. Great food at various price points.
La Clusaz, once a remote village not on the way to anywhere, has become a ski resort that can boast of loyal visitors who return every year to experience great skiing, excellent food, and alpine-village charm. With a local population of around 2000 people, you will not be mauled by crowds – even in ski season – and you’ll have plenty of interaction with friendly locals.
Local shops are not high-brow, and specialise in local goods and foods. There are ski shops too, of course, but don’t expect to find high-end watches, jewellery or other luxury brands as you would at the likes of St Moritz. This is a place with a true village feel, and winters focus on skiing, skiing and more skiing.
There is a healthy bar scene in the village, but it is not a great destination for techno-club lovers or hard-core party animals. It’s best for those who like a cosy, casual atmosphere and for families. That said, Chamonix is not far away, so those who don’t mind a short commute to and from the party scene still have some options.
On the slopes
Snow conditions can be icy and crusted under certain conditions, but most of the year steps are taken to retrack and groom susceptible runs. The resort has sufficient snow to stay open about 128 days per ski season.
The majority of the resort’s 80+km of runs are blue or red level, so the resort is a favourite of intermediate skiers, whether they have just graduated themselves from green runs, or are pushing forward to greater challenges with an eye on those lofty advanced offerings. Either way, variety is abundant and options to challenge or cruise all day long.
There are a few choices for an après-ski drink in La Clusaz. Bar Bali Bar serves cocktails, indoors and out if the weather permits – and has a friendly atmosphere great for chatting and intimate meals. S Pub La Clusaz is another good choice, as is La Datcha, a favourite among repeat visitors to the area. For some light-hearted fun, try karaoke at Le Bachal bar. Bring cash though – no card transactions at Le Bachal.
Restaurants include Chez Arthur, a self-service restaurant on the mountain with great views and reasonable prices. Le Bercail has a terrace for outdoor meals and drinks when the weather is nice, and they even grill meat over open flames on the terrace – great views, aromas and food! For fine dining, try Le Vieux Chalet, a local gem that even boasts a Michelin star! Whatever your preference, there are many restaurants in the area and most of them are very good at what they do.
When you’re not eating, and you’re taking a break from skiing, you can check out the Aravis aqua park. It has a beach you can sunbathe on, mountain-side views, and all the usual fun of a great pool. For something different, try ‘Ice Bumpers’ or skating at the local ice rink, hiking, snowshoeing, and other outdoor activities.