Glass takes to the slopes at Hotel Barrière Les Neiges Courchevel

LOCATED in the snow-dusted ski town of Courchevel, on the French side of the Alps, is Hotel Barrière Les Neiges Courchevel.  Set around world-class slopes and a postcard-worthy mountain range, the hotel sits in front of a perfect backdrop making it a dream holiday destination before you even set foot in it. 

Hotel Barrière Les Neiges Courchevel

Hotel Barrière Les Neiges sets itself apart from other luxury hotels as one of the 31 establishments in France that has received the Distinction Palace—an award given to only the finest of 5-star hotels.  Upon visiting, it became clear what the difference was between a luxury hotel and an exceptional hotel; Hotel Barrière Les Neiges is the latter.

Terrace at Hotel Barrière Les Neiges

The hotel exudes a sense of elevated luxury that is only capable through impeccable taste and refinement.  This is obvious upon my arrival, which is seamless thanks to the incredibly attentive staff. Ski trousers are delivered to my room within 20 minutes of mentioning I forgot mine at home. 

The interior of the hotel perfects the balance between chic and cosy. The sound of a crackling fire and hot drinks greets me in the lobby—a warm welcome, literally. Quirky design elements such as a polar bear plushie lined chair (that most definitely made an appearance on my Instagram) and fur-covered tissue boxes tastefully contrast the modern fixtures.

Lobby at Hotel Barrière Les Neiges

My room has furry pillows and a sleek fireplace that almost makes me forget just how cold it is outside. Stepping onto my wrap-around balcony, I marvel at the surreal view in front of me as in the distance, I can see the hotel’s red hot air balloon floating against a bright blue sky. With a view like that, the cold doesn’t seem to matter. 

Junior suite at Hotel Barrière Les Neiges

The next morning, Kevin, my ski instructor, assures me that there is no better place to learn how to ski than in Courchevel.  Whether you are experienced on the slopes or not, Hotel Barrière Les Neiges has guides and trails for any skill or enthusiasm level – emphasising one of the many ways the hotel caters to guests of all ages, making it perfect for families. In only three short hours, I go from wobbling like Bambi on ice to being ready to take on the green-marked trails.

Skiing at Hotel Barrière Les Neiges

There are two fantastic onsite restaurants: the historic French brasserie Fouquet’s and Bfire, a conceptual restaurant created by 3 Michelin star chef Mauro Colagreco. Fouquet’s is open for all three meals starting with the classic continental breakfast and seasonal lunch to dinner menus developed by Pierre Gagnaire.

It is directly next to the hotel’s bar, so I enjoy artfully crafted cocktails with some regional classics, including a delicious French onion soup and Tartiflette au Reblochon—a new favourite. Bfire’s menu is inspired by wood-fired cuisine and is home to some of the best-prepared meat I have ever eaten. 

The bar at Hotel Barrière Les Neiges

Bfire at Hotel Barrière Les Neiges

Despite being a skiing and snowboarding lovers’ paradise, Hotel Barrière Les Neiges offers much more. The Spa Diane Barriére is a relaxing place to recoup after a day on the slopes or instead of the slopes. It boasts six treatment rooms, a water fitness circuit, a 20-metre long pool, a steam room, a sauna, and a picturesque open-air jacuzzi lit with fairy lights.  The treatment menu is extensive and consists of a wide range of carefully curated massages and bespoke Biologique Recherche facials.

The pool at Spa Diane Barriére

Open air jacuzzi at Spa Diane Barriére

The hotel provides guests with a plethora of pinch-me moments, including dog sledging through nearby forest terrain – an experience where being pulled by adorable and well-trained dogs through a winter wonderland is not only the highlight of my trip but a bucket list item of mine that I was able to tick off. For those not persuaded by this feline experience, they offer snowmobile rides to hot air balloon trips, ensuring guests can make a dent on their own bucket lists while visiting Hotel Barrière Les Neiges Courchevel, which I can safely say should be at the top of your list. 

by Jamison Kent

Rooms start at £1350 per night. For more information or to book click here.