European resorts //

Author
  Topic Started By:  the big cheese on skis    On:  Thu 7th August, 2008 at 22:54
the big cheese on skis
Member Since: 2008
Posts: 20
philadelphia
#1  European resorts  7 Aug '08 at 22:54
never been to the alps but trying to go this coming season. curious about european resorts. I feel american resorts are companies like amusement parks, but when I visit european resort websites I get confused. Its like the website is for a town. so are resorts in the alps more so towns than companies? if it makes any sense what i'm trying to say
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WTFH
Member Since: 2004
Posts: 14,398
Surrey
#2  Re: European resorts  7 Aug '08 at 23:07
spot on!
The resort is the town.
The lifts are owned by a company.
There will be multiple ski schools run by different companies
Everything is independent..
I post, therefore I am

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mickworld
Member Since: 2004
Posts: 5,377
London
#3  Re: European resorts  7 Aug '08 at 23:10
Very few, if any, European resorts are owned by one company/family - so the website for, for example, Tignes is about the whole resort (town) of Tignes - with info about and/or links to the lift pass company who operate the lifts. That lift pass company will usually own the lifts but not necessarily the land that those lifts are on.

Hope I've understood what you're asking and that you understand the answer!
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sandgroper61
Member Since: 2004
Posts: 9,317
London
#5  Re: European resorts  8 Aug '08 at 08:09
BCOS: you're used to PCMR, for example - where one company runs the resort and the instructors, lifties and mountain patrol all share the same building and team rooms.

Europe ain't like that in any way, shape or form. They're independent buggers.

Taking it to its illogical conclusion it used to be the case (may still be) that in Livigno, an Italian resort, there wasn't even one lift company. Each lift was owned individually by the farmer whose land it was on.

But in most cases you'll find one company running the lifts. They won't have a connection to anyone else officially ... though will do deals with ski schools to allow priority access to classes, for example.

The Three Valleys in France used to be three valleys, three lift companies, and they were at each other's throats while theoretically presenting a united front to the world. I believe there has been a consolidation there (is Alpina in charge now?) but someone who has been there more recently than me can tell you that ... Tignes and Val d'Isere used to argue a lot, too.

Resorts definitely don't run ski schools. France used to be a monopoly situation with the ESF (Ecole de Ski Francaise) but it was an instructors' co-operative that ran schools all over the country. The monopoly was broken about 20 years ago and while they are still the major force you will find many ski schools operating now - but again, all independent of the "resort", which in fact is just a town or village with an entrepreneurial bent and a handy mountain.
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the big cheese on skis
Member Since: 2008
Posts: 20
philadelphia
#6  Re: European resorts  8 Aug '08 at 14:20
I see
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Boggart
Member Since: 2004
Posts: 11,601
Somewhere without a paddle….
#7  Re: European resorts  8 Aug '08 at 15:55

Originally posted by Sandgroper61

The Three Valleys in France .....I believe there has been a consolidation there (is Alpina in charge now?) but someone who has been there more recently than me can tell you that ... Tignes and Val d'Isere used to argue a lot, too.

Cheesers/Gropers,

The nearest that the French Alpes ever had to a North American style resort was Les Arcs, set up and run by one company, Groupe des Arcs. They owed and ran everything, including one of the first 'independent' ski schools in France, 'Arc Adventure.'

In the mid '90's it all started to come apart at the seams and various bits got sold off but the core of the company metamorphosed into the 'Compagnie des Alpes.'

I remain (an ex-employee of Groupe des Acrs),

Boggars
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