The wall of portraits at the entrance to the La Clusaz tourist office is impressive.
It recounts half a century of skiing through the titles of a gallery of world champions: Guy Périllat (giant), Edgar Grospiron (moguls), Régine Cavagnoud (Super G), Vincent Vittoz (cross-country skiing) and Candide Thovex (freeski) to name just a handful…
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More than any other, this Haut-Savoyard village should be considered as a whole to appreciate all its asperities.
Its geographical location makes it one of the first alpine resorts coming from Annecy (40 minutes), Lyon (2h) or Paris (5h).
The ski area is spread over five massifs including the small resort of Manigod linked on one side to Etale and on the other to Beauregard.
An alpine domain totaling 125 km of well-connected slopes and two vast plateaus - the Confins and Beauregard - are a delight for skiers, cross-country skiers and walkers in search of gentle mountains.
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Beauregard is located at altitude and offers easy skiing on its summit and sports on two black runs that wind through the forest to the ice rink.
On the other side, a ski safari takes you to the micro-station of Manigod then L'Étale, a remote and less frequented massif.
The latter is pleasant to ski at the end of the morning because it is sunny and has steep, wide and prepared slopes.
Exploring this side of the estate largely takes up a day, including a lunch break on the beautiful terrace of Chez Fonfon, recommended for its panorama of La Tournette, its welcome and its
“good taste, good price”
Descent through the fir trees, on the Beauregard black run.
Bruno Mazodier / Le Figaro Magazine
You can devote a second day of skiing to exploring the Aiguille massif and its three sides: combe des Juments, facing south, to ski early;
crêt du loup bumpy and renamed
in honor of the Olympic mogul champion;
Combe de Fernuy, once off-piste and incredible to ski in fresh snow.
For lunch, the Relais de l'Aiguille wins all the votes in terms of panorama.
The ultimate massif and not the least since it shelters the summit of the ski area (2,477m) is that of La Balme.
Acclaimed by local legends Sébastien Michaud in freeride and Candide Thovex in freeski, La Balme is the sector that opens and closes the season.
The wide section of ungroomed but secure slopes is a delight for freeriders every day after a snowfall.
The Vraille in the Combe de Torchère is a long descent into paradise, hidden, steep and hilly, still trafoled a few days after the fall by connoisseurs.
Exploring the 125 km of slopes fills three good days… To get tired of them, it takes more than one lifetime.
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The après-ski in La Clusaz does not have the bombast of the Haute Tarentaise resorts.
Even if it is possible to start the evening at the Caves de Pacaly, at the Refuge or in the bars of the beautiful hotels (Coeur du village, St-Alban) and jiggle at the Bachal, the "bamboche" is not the local specialty. , nevertheless… night skiing every Tuesday is a good springboard for vitaminizing the week.
It is perhaps in the restaurant sector that the potential for growth is the greatest: no stars but a bistronomy that is taking its way to Le Cinq (Coeur du Village restaurant) or L'Ourson.
But in the end it doesn't matter, gourmets can console themselves at Marc Veyrat's Maison des Bois** in Manigod or at one of the great chefs based around Lake Annecy: Jean Sulpice**,
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New for winter 2023: end-of-day skiing rather than night skiing
Sunset or sunrise: part of the magic of winter in the resort.
This season, La Clusaz is abandoning night skiing in favor of late-day skiing.
Launched last winter, the lighted track of the Crêt du Merle has been put on hold to participate in the effort of collective energy sobriety.
On the other hand, fans of night skiing can console themselves on Tuesdays by taking the last cabin at Le Fernuy at 4.15 p.m.
o reach the heights of the ski area.
While the sun sets over the Aravis and the village lights up, the happy few who have taken care to book the day before, will enjoy a Savoyard aperitif.
The descent at the last light of day is supervised by instructors and requires a level of gold star or Class 3 and a minimum of 15 years.
The small group takes the Crêt du Loup and Merle trails to the heart of the village.
Reservation and information on the tourist office website: €12 per person in addition to the package.
Our favorite tracks
Cross-country skiers, pedestrians and snowshoe enthusiasts take advantage of two vast plateaus - Les Confins and Beauregard.
There are two big freeride spots in La Clusaz, that of Balme, hilly and made famous by Candide Thovex in his sequence shots where he performs tricks on big natural bumps.
The other spot, less playful and more involved, is the Combe de Fernuy.
The orientation and the topography make it the powder reservoir of the domain.
In a completely different register, the largely sunny Beauregard plateau is ideal for learning to ski.
It includes a non-Alpine sector (cross-country skiing or hiking) and beautiful addresses such as Matins clairs where donuts are earned.
Where to sleep in La Clusaz?
Our selection of hotels
A superior double room in La Serraz.
The recent Hotel Saint-Alban**** is the favorite address at the top of the village.
Its unobstructed view of Le Merle, its “art deco refuge” style, its cocktail bar and its Nuxe spa make it a coherent whole.
From 120€ per night.
195 Route de la Piscine, 74220 La Clusaz;
: 04 58 10 10 18.
For the tribes, renting a chalet has many advantages.
That of La Serraz 4**** and its constellation of six family rooms for four people and three chalets that can accommodate 6 people is ideal for tribes.
Located on the road to the Col des Aravis, 300m from the slopes, this heterogeneous ensemble finds unity around Karine's table, where you can taste generous cuisine made from fresh, local produce.
From €377 per night in a double room with breakfast.
3862 Rte du Col des Aravis, 74220 La Clusaz;
tel.: 04 50 02 48 29.
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Our good restaurants
The terrace of the 1647 restaurant has a view of the Aravis range.
The Beauregard plateau finally has its table perched with the 1647 which sits at the top like a star on a fir tree.
The building faces only the Aravis range and is accessible to pedestrians by the Beauregard gondola.
The decor combines light wood and stone with large openings that let in light.
The snack bar, restaurant and bar promote the farm-to-table concept, such as the Savoyard crémant fondue (€35) or the free-range pork belly with hazelnut butter (€25).
Plateau de Beauregard, 74220 La Clusaz;
tel.: 04 56 19 03 65.
La Ferme, an institution located at the bottom of the Crêt du Merle but accessible by car or on foot from the village, has been run by Stephen Requet since 1996. We are talking about it again this winter 2023 because Stephen has completely redone his menu and can only preserve meat two dishes and souvenirs.
To carry out this successful conversion, he recruited a new chef, Franck Birret, and sources his supplies from local producers within a radius of less than 50 km.
The Savoyard specialties revisited, such as the Savoyard Fondue next door (€22 and at your discretion), remain but now coexist with the vegetarian boulyé (lunch box in Savoyard patois) consisting of four courses with a pumpkin soup (€21.50) , half a roasted cauliflower with fresh cream and fine herbs as a starter (€11.50) or even the natural Bobosse quenelle spoon style,
1078 route du col des Aravis, 74220 La Clusaz.
: 04 50 02 50 50.
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Have to do
Romain and Sarah take the curious behind the scenes of the production of the authentic Génépi liqueur.
Sarah and Romain, brothers and sisters, both children of distillers, bring the famous Aravis Distillery back to life and take the curious behind the scenes of the production of the authentic Génépi liqueur, produced in the artisanal tradition since 1876. Romain recounts his know- do and lifts the veil on the bottling line while Sarah runs the shop.
, 106 chemin du pré defair 74220 La Clusaz.
: 06 26 64 85 28.
Ski passes and tips
There are two packages:
(125 km of linked runs) and
: La Clusaz-Manigod + Grand-Bornand (210 km of runs linked by shuttles.)
La Clusaz-Manigod: 125 km of slopes
La Clusaz-Manigod: 125 km of slopes
● Adult day: €47
● 6 days adult: 235 €
Family pass: 5% reduction for the simultaneous purchase of at least 4 ski passes of 6 days or more with at least one child pass under 18 years old.
Aravis: 210 km of slopes
Aravis: 210 km of slopes
● 2 days adult: 95 €
● 6 days adult: €265
Family pass: 5% reduction for the simultaneous purchase of 4 ski passes for 6 days or more (including a minimum of one skier under 18)
A season / daily pass operating like a motorway electronic toll where each use is debited from your account with a discounted rate: €42.50 instead of €47 (adult) and €32.50 instead of €36 € (child);
8th day free...
Coming to La Clusaz
From Paris: direct TGV to Annecy (from €45) and Alpbus shuttle (€8).
From Lyon: direct TER (from €27.20) and Alpbus shuttle (€8).
From Geneva: AEROSKI shuttles (€39 one way, €68 return).
La Clusaz tourist office: laclusaz.com.
This article is being updated
This article is being updated