The French Alps isn’t just for skiing – though it is the world’s premiere ski destination. It can also be a place where you can enjoy a variety of spring/summer/fall fun, with the backdrop of stunning mountains.
Imagine yourself hiking in pristine forest, pedalling an electric bike through the steep winding trails, or horseback riding through the crisp air. Imagine paragliding a mile and a half up, peering over the trees, parallel to those snow-capped peaks. And let’s not forget the high speed mountain biking and white water rafting.
That’s where Club Med Arcs Panorama, in Bourg Saint Maurice, France, comes in. It opened its doors Dec. 2018, and, like its other franchises around the world, has vacation down to an art. The sparkling new resort, overlooking the gorgeous Alps in each direction, is about 2.5 hours’ drive from Geneva International Airport.
It’s secluded, and that’s kind of the point, but not too much that it doesn’t have the comforts and luxury of what you’d expect from a high level resort.
Beginning with the food, each meal – different every day – is a cornucopia of colours, flavours, and textures. Really, for any taste, diet or craving.
The sumptuous never-ending buffets cover all of the bases imaginable, from American treats such as hamburgers and steaks, to various fresh fish, aisles of salads, sushi, French cheeses and breads, fruits galore, various ethnic dishes and stews.
(Of course, if you’re peckish, you can saunter into the dining room and grab a bite pretty much any time of day.) For private dining and upscale gourmet, they also have an a la carte restaurant where the waiters dote on you. I must mention, for those keen to know, there’s plenty of opportunity to avail oneself of the free-flowing alcohol throughout the day and night.
In terms of the rooms – high level hotel-style – I can say that the highlight was time spent on the outside deck, eighteen floors up, gazing into gorgeous green forests below, and carving into memory the beauty of mountain ranges, and the quaint towns dotted amongst them.
While it’s easy to get giddy over the high adrenaline sports, there’s everything for those who want to simply chill and relax. Try yoga, heated indoor and outdoor pools, a whirlpool bath, or take in an oil massage or two.
Just in case you have enough energy to spare after a full day of activity, each evening, there’s a unique party or show. Examples during my stay were a Gypsy Kings tribute band, a four piece orchestra playing pop hits, a retro costumed dance party, and a musical performance of the Great Gatsby.
Whether you want to get your heart-pumping, your muscles relaxed, or give the brain a recharge, this is the place to be to get away from the smog, traffic jams and rat race.