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Simply perfect: we spent a snowy winter vacation in this crazy hotel - voila! tourism


Alpine skiing holiday we all love to hate - crazy five star hotel, spa, ski instructors, Meribel - French ski town. Watch Walla! tourism

A ski vacation in Meribel - a ski town of the Upper Alps (photo: Lehi Shork)

It took me exactly a minute to fall in love and if I had known it would happen I would have come earlier.

much earlier.

As someone who is always cold (even in the Israeli winter) I have never been able to understand how people choose to spend their vacation in freezing weather and add sin to crime and go skiing?

Free exercise always sounds like an evil oxymoron to me.

And if I needed a reminder that sometimes we need to step out of our comfort zone to be pleasantly surprised, I got it big time.

So for the first time in my life I went on a snowy skiing holiday.

The destination - Meribel - a French ski town located in the Alps about two hours from the Swiss border.

The chosen hotel - Le coucou.

A five-star hotel located on a ski slope (slope for professionals) at an altitude of 1700 meters that was filled only in the last few weeks with an impressive amount of snow.

The means - two days of skiing with close instruction at the children's school on site.

And the result?

She was less impressive than I had hoped but in the end I managed to release a short video of me surfing and even my promise to myself that I must do it again.

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Maribel (photo: Walla! system, Lehi Shork)

Maribel (photo: Walla! system, Lehi Shork)

A lesser known ski town.

The ski slopes in Meribel (photo: Walla! system, Lehi Shoresh)

In Maribel you will find many ski resorts, hotels of different levels, restaurants, bars and of course a center with shops for sports equipment, souvenirs, delicatessens and places to eat and drink.

The season starts here on December 10, but like many places, this year it started later and only about two weeks ago did it start to snow seriously here.

Our own owner

The beautiful Le coucou hotel where I stayed was opened in 2019 and belongs to the Friant family.

And if the family name sounds familiar to you, it is a Jewish French family that owned the NAF NAF clothing show in the 1980s and also a less successful partnership in Golan Telecom.

Today, the family is mainly involved in real estate and in recent years has also begun to deal with the hotel business. The family also owns a hotel in the town of Crouchable near Meribel, a hotel in St. Tropez, a hotel in Provence and soon, and here is a scoop that you may read here for the first time, a new hotel in the Marais district called La Grand Mazara that will be built A restaurant under the direction of Assaf Granit that will serve up-to-date Ashkenazi food and will answer to the name Bobla.

As part of our visit to Le coucou, we also had our eyes on the Lapogee Hotel, which is also owned by the family.

The hotel located in Kruševel is rated Palace - which means its score is above five stars - an important piece of information that I didn't even know existed.

This is a very luxurious hotel where the cost of staying in it is 2,500 euros per night for a couple in the most "simple" room (there really is no such thing).

It also includes a classic Japanese and French restaurant with the perfect bread basket in the world, a luxurious spa, a ski boutique, a heated pool, a changing room for smokers and more.

It's not for nothing that this hotel has 33 suites.

They pay attention to every detail

But back to reality, or what I would at least like to imagine as the reality of my life but can't keep dreaming.

At the Le coucou hotel, 4 guests were accommodated in the Chalet complex - a kind of luxurious luxurious cabin inside the hotel, although the name "chalet" does not fit this thing.

The hotel has two such complexes and each of them has 4 floors and a total size of 590 square meters, and can comfortably accommodate a family or friends of up to 12 people. With four spacious bedrooms, four bathrooms, a floor of a private pool and spa, a spacious living room , a kitchen and corner and food, and of course - a private butler service. And the price? Between 4,000 euros per night (just off season) and up to 12,000 euros (just in season) per night. Small money for an average Israeli family.

The rooms in the complex, and in general throughout the hotel, are spacious rooms that we are usually not used to seeing in hotels, and the truth is not in rented apartments in the central area, and the view is certainly not what you are used to seeing.

In addition, the attention to detail here and the generosity of the hosts is something I have never encountered before.

It starts with the care products in the bathroom (the luxury Diptyque) and continues, to the small gifts that await each guest who arrives on the bed, whether it's pampering slippers, ski socks, dolls and small toys in case children arrive, to the night service where they actually tidy up your room before bed, Curtains are drawn, slippers are put by the bed, pillows are fluffed up and a small chocolate is placed by the bed - in case you want something sweet in the middle of the night.

A room with a perfect view (photo: official website, PR)

The living room of the Chalet.

To call this thing a cabin is an insult (photo: official website, public relations)

Where do you eat?

The hotel has no less than 3 restaurants and a bar.

The first of them is Biancaneve - a restaurant with an Italian concept where the hotel's equal breakfasts are served that include everything you can imagine and more.

If you think that in Israel they exaggerate the breakfast buffet, here the variety is wide and the quality of the food is wow.

Breakfast at the Le Coucou Méribel hotel (Photo: Walla! system, Lehi Shoresh)

Breakfast at the Le Coucou Méribel hotel (Photo: Walla! system, Lehi Shoresh)

Breakfast at the Le Coucou Méribel hotel (Photo: Walla! system, Lehi Shoresh)

Breakfast at the Le Coucou Méribel hotel (Photo: Walla! system, Lehi Shoresh)

The second restaurant and probably the gastronomic highlight of the hotel is the Beefbar, which specializes in aged meats.

But not only.

Even for someone who doesn't touch meat or fish like me, there was a lot to eat and the food is exceptionally delicious.

It's just important when booking the rooms to mention your limitations on the matter - and they will already adjust everything for you and will be updated even when you arrive at the restaurant.

And if the French food and wine didn't convince you - the restaurant's huge terrace overlooking the valley surrounded by snow-capped mountains will do it.

Another restaurant located in the hotel, which may not really be a restaurant, but a room that used to be a smoking room, and today has 16 seats, is Le Fumoir, which serves traditional French dishes such as fondue or raclette cheeses.

It is recommended to go there only if you are really interested in the gastronomy of the Savoar Valley, its taste, and also its smell.

In the hotel's bar, Bar des Pistes, you can sip a small drink after or before skiing while watching all the unfortunates who are still trying to get back to their hotel.

In the afternoon, French crepes are served here in a kind of "tea time" and in the evening there are sometimes live performances here.

Le Coucou Méribel Beef Bar Restaurant (Photo: Walla! system, Lehi Shork)

Le Coucou Méribel Beef Bar Restaurant (Photo: Walla! system, Lehi Shork)

Le Coucou Méribel Beef Bar Restaurant (Photo: Walla! system, Lehi Shork)

Le Coucou Méribel Beef Bar Restaurant (Photo: Walla! system, Lehi Shork)

An intoxicating view.

The muff from the Beefbar restaurant (photo: Walla! system, Lehi Shork)

And what about skiing?

If you've come this far and you've been skiing for years, you're probably asking yourself - ok when is this lady going to start talking about skiing?

So here it is.

As mentioned, I arrived as a green rookie to the snowy slopes and this is already a stressful experience.

What made this experience embarrassing (and then, as mentioned, also fun) is the fact that I spent my first and second lessons at the children's school.

And when I say children I mean toddlers.

Those who have been skiing since they were two years old and are used to snow like we are used to the sand of the sea or the fact that there is no parking anywhere.

Still after putting my little ego aside, it was an extremely fun experience.

The next day I was already on other skis and went to try Nordic walking in the snow - a unique and fun experience, during which you walk in thick and soft snow (what is called powder by the professionals).

The walk, which is of course done with a guide, takes about two hours and is not difficult or dangerous.

During it the guide will show you traces of wild animals such as foxes or rabbits and will explain to you about the plants - recommended for nature lovers.

Ski resort in Meribel (photo: Walla! system, Lehi Shoresh)

They start surfing at the school for the little ones (photo: Walla! system, Lehi Shoresh)

Walking in the snow (Photo: Walla! system, Lehi Root)

A special experience in nature (photo: Walla! system, Lehi Shork)

By the way, for those who are really not into walking or skiing, a skiing vacation is a great thing even if it *only* includes drinks in front of the fireplace, rest, good food and a pampering spa.

Le coucou has a spa complex and heated pools, one outdoor and one indoor.

In the spa, you can receive various treatments starting from an excellent massage that takes place when you are wrapped in the perfect blanket (which someone must import to Israel and soon), and is done by professional hands, through beauty treatments with special products of the Tata Harper brand.

The formulas of this brand are without synthetic components, without artificial colors or fragrances, without GMO (genetically modified organism) and with a label of the Ecocert Greenlife organization that supports the preservation of the environment.

The price of the massage is not cheap and for an hour of treatment you will have to part with 180 euros which is a little over 600 shekels.

not cheap

Heated indoor pool (photo: Walla! system, Lehi Shork)

Hot inside, freezing outside.

An outdoor pool heated to 30 degrees Celsius (Photo: Walla! system, Lehi Shork)

A bed or a spa bed? (Photo: Walla! system, Lehi Shork)

Carefully selected unique products (photo: Walla! system, Lehi Shork)


The hotel has 55 rooms of different types, including double rooms, suites and private cabins.

The difference is in the sizes and the view reflected from the room.

For a regular room you will pay 520 euros in the off season and the price can reach as much as 1,200 euros in the season.

Suites (100-120 square meters in size) will cost between 2,500 euros and 4,00 euros per night.

It is important to note that the busiest periods are Christmas and New Year's and February until the beginning of March. On February 6-19 the World Ski Championships will be held in the area and surfing and the prices will be correspondingly high.

The prices include breakfast and you can also book accommodation on a half-board basis that also includes dinner or lunch. At the hotel you can also rent ski equipment and buy a ski pass. The

writer was a guest of Le Coucou Hotel in Meribel

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Source: walla

All life articles on 2023-02-03

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