Top 10 Historic Ski Hotels
Browse our holidays in the snow, or our selection of Alpine walking holidays, and you'll notice the same hotels feature in both.
What's more, you'll notice that a considerable number of these hotels have quite a history, having opened over a century – and in some cases several centuries – ago. Adding to the sense of tradition is that many have been run by the same family for a large part of that time.
Hotel Bella Tola, St-Luc, Val d'Anniviers
It may not be the oldest in our selection – it was built in the late 19th century – but the Bella Tola
nevertheless won the Swiss Historic Hotel of the Year award in 2001 in recognition of the efforts of owners Claude and Anne Françoise Buchs, who are co-founders of the Swiss Historic Hotels Group, to preserve the hotel's romantic fin-de-siècle elegance. Throughout the hotel are antiques, polished wood floors and plenty of Anne-Françoise's artistic touches, and even recent additions such as the spa have been built in harmony with their surroundings.
Hotel Engiadina, Zuoz, Engadine Valley
More than any other of our historic ski hotels, the Engiadina
, built in 1876, exudes Grand Tour elegance, from the chandeliered restaurant to the large, high-ceilinged public rooms. It does not take too much imagination to visualise upper-class Victorian travellers quietly sipping at cups of tea while warming themselves by the open fires.
Hotel Meisser, Guarda, Engadine Valley
A little further along the valley from Zuoz is Guarda, which is even more handsome. This idyllic village is the setting for the Hotel Meisser
, named after the family that founded it in 1893 - the building itself dates back to 1645. Five generations later, it is still in the hands of the same family – run by Benno and Maya Meisser. Together, they are determined to preserve the sense of history throughout the hotel, as well as the intimate, relaxed atmosphere that the family has built up over the decades.
Ylläshumina Hotel, Ylläs, FINLAND
Named after the fjell beneath which it stands, the Ylläshumina Hotel
, has been welcoming guests since 1945, when Aapi Äkäslompolo proudly carved the name into the forerunner of today's building. Those first guests came by ski, by boat and even by reindeer - there was no road then - to experience life in the wilderness. Today, the hotel is run by Aapi's niece Meeri and her husband Toivo Qvist, combining modern luxury with history and tradition. Much has survived since Aapi’s day – most notably the unique landscapes and peaceful setting.
Fefor Hotel, Fefor, Norwegian Highlands
Built in 1891, this charming hotel not only enjoys a beautiful location in its own woodland dale above a frozen lake, but also boasts a distinguished former guest: Captain Scott. His visit in 1910 to prepare for his 1912 Antarctic attempt is recorded in black-and-white photographs displayed in the Fefor Hotel
's public rooms, adding to the sense of tradition and nostalgia.
Hotel Wiesenhof, Pertisau, Tyrol
Now a 4-star hotel and one of our most popular ski hotels, the Wiesenhof
has known several incarnations. It started as a farm, then had a few guestrooms added to it before eventually evolving into a hotel. The modern facilities include a state-of-the-art spa which occupies the entire first floor, offering a wide range of treatments, from aromatherapy massages to weird and wonderful stone-oil baths.
Hotel Edelweiss, Engelberg, central Switzerland
was built in 1901. The high-ceilinged restaurant is the room which best exemplifies the hotel’s Art Nouveau architecture. Its huge windows afford breathtaking views of the dramatic high mountains framing the village, which you can admire as you dine.
Hotel Victoria, Kandersteg, Bernese Oberland
is the oldest hotel in the village, dating back some 200 years. The original part of the hotel is called the Ritter, which retains all of its old charm. It houses the à la carte restaurant, and bedrooms here are cosy yet stylish, often with panelled walls, wooden ceilings and attractively rustic furniture. The more recent part of the hotel is not that new either – it was built in Victorian times during the boom in Alpine travel, hence the hotel's name, and is spacious and elegant
Hotel Xander, Leutasch, Tyrol
can also boast of being older than its neighbours, and is in fact the oldest hostelry in the Leutasch Valley. Behind its centuries-old façade lies a pleasant blend of ancient and modern. The Stube
restaurant may have changed little with time, but the facilities are certainly more extensive than they were when the hotel first opened its doors – nowadays guests can unwind in the indoor pool, saunas, jacuzzis and Turkish baths.
Hotel First Marin, Bergen, Norway
This is one of the hotels that we feature as a city add-on
to other Norwegian holidays. Given that the idea of an add-on of this kind is to be able to contrast Norway’s awe-inspiring scenery with one of its most atmospheric cities, the hotel makes a fitting place to stay. Located in Bergen’s UNESCO-listed heritage district, rooms in the original gabled wing of the Hotel First Marin offer views of the colourful harbour, the neighbouring fish market and surrounding mountains.
If our Top 10 Historic Ski Hotels has inspired you to take a snow holiday
, please contact our friendly reservations team
for more information.