Ski Time Pleasures, Chalet Treasures
…….. Rediscovering Klosters
I have to confess that I am a ski addict and have been since I first buckled into a pair of skis some unnamed years ago. When the first snow comes, I want to tone-up, pack-up and head for one of my favorite mountains.
This year I rediscovered an old friend, Klosters, in Switzerland.The quality of the mountain infrastructure, its lifts, its ski terrain, its snow should put it at the top of anyone’s list as a great ski spot. Klosters earns top marks with its kilometers of pistes and trails, and its endless off-piste possibilities, and its breath-taking high mountain scenery that makes the Alps such a sought-after destination. But Klosters has so much more.
Klosters is a that rare Alpine location where traditional alpine charm, privacy if you want it, a village ambiance, great food, and night life, plus fantastic skiing all come together. The snow this year is extraordinary. Think 5 meters! The variety and extent of the ski terrain is truly stupendous. You will find many days of opportunities for sedate skiers looking for some sun and lunch along with some fresh air and exercise. But there is also plenty of truly challenging off-piste adventures for the experts, who ski anywhere at anytime! We skied with some of those experts, in the company of local ski guides who exchange their summer farming activities for this more sporty and social pastime. The guides were interesting characters themselves, entertaining and of course, so impressive not only in their skiing, but in their knowledge of where every tree and rock might be lurking, and as important, where a cosy restaurant could be found at lunch time !
We skied fast,carving racing turns with Kurt to lunch at the Gotschna Restaurant at Serneus and slightly,frightening powder runs through the trees with Georg to the restaurant at the Parssen Hotel near Kublis. These are charming eateries, thoroughly comfortable and atmospheric family-run places with delicious food. It is understandable that Klosters is and has been a preferred site for European royalty. However, habitués William and Kate were not spotted on this trip.
There is a vibrant social life at Klosters, even in the low season mid-January weeks. We went to see flood-lit Polo in the Snow. Dressed in warm coats, we found flowing champagne and delicious food in a heated tent added to the pleasure ! We enjoyed dinner at the “Wynegg”, a Klosters’s standby with a great Vegetarian platter for non-meat eaters), and typical Austrian dishes, like schnitzel for carnivores. Another night, we ate at the Alpenrosli, which requires a serious taxi drive up the mountain, but results in a gorgeous view over the village. We abstained from sledding down the mountain after dinner – an activity we had undertaken in earlier, less prudent years!
However the highlight of our evenings was dinner at Chalet l’Ours as the guests of its charming and talented owner. She has created what must be one of the most beautiful and delightful private chalets in the Alps, (and its available to rent, fully staffed, to families and small groups, through CommendableRentals. Though steps from the center of Klosters, we enter through a Lantern-lit, snow flanked passage. The chalet offers four luxurious bedrooms, with large, beautiful bathrooms, and inviting details, like fur coverlets. We were charmed. Despite the fascinating guests, one’s eyes could not resist wandering to observe the countless little touches that only someone with talent and taste would have imagined. With knotty-pine paneling throughout, cozy fires, and a delicious dinner cooked and served by the chalet staff, it was a truly luxurious Alpine experience. Dinner started with Champagne and “amuse-bouche” Thai Prawns and a crème of cauliflower and truffles served in front of the fire, and continued to a beautifully laid dining table with candle-lit and picture windows displaying the snowy mountain landscape. The chef was truly talented, and the dinner perfect.
Situated on a slope that is in the town, Chalet l’Ours,with its dark wood and red-shuttered exterior, has lovely views over the Klosters village and valley, and is just minutes walk from the Gotschna Cable Car. The Chalet is available for rent; it is difficult to imagine a better place anywhere in the Alps. See it now in the CommendableRentals portfolio.
On our last day we were able to see another of the very few private chalet rentals available in Klosters – the Chalet Marmot. This too has been lovingly decorated in an alpine idiom, and is the perfect spot for a large extended family or a group of friends, as it sleeps up to 11. We are very pleased that this too will soon be in the CommendableRentals portfolio.
20 January, 2102, Susan Doull,