Rooksana Hossenally , CONTRIBUTOR
Even if you're not a die-hard skier, you will probably have heard of Courchevel, the luxury ski resort perched up in the French Alps. The winter equivalent to Saint Tropez, it comes with its own set of couture stores from Chanel to Fendi, and has the most palace hotels and Michelin starred restaurants in the country after Paris, making choosing a place to stay no slim affair.
Le Strato Hotel
The killer mountain vistas at Le Strato Hotel, Courchevel.
However, Courchevel isn't just all razzle dazzle. It also ranks high when it comes to skiing. Set right on the slopes of Les Trois Vallées, the largest skiable domain in Europe, it is one of the most beautiful in the world.
Frequented by top A-listers from George Clooney to British royals, the reams of hotels in the area are well versed in catering to guests' every whim.
From mammoth private chalets with heated pools and mountain views, to historic hotels abound with local Savoyard charm (think open fireplaces, wooden interiors and furry rugs), there's a type of accommodation for every taste. If, however, you like your hotels cozy but on the contemporary side and without too much fuss or bling, then the unassuming Le Strato Hotel ticks all the boxes.
Le Strato Hotel, Courchevel.
Le Strato Hotel on the slopes in Courchevel.
A five-star outfit right on the slopes in the Bellecôte area at 1,850m of altitude (Courchevel's highest spot), the big point-scorer is the breathtaking, entirely unobstructed view of the mountains, a rarity in Courchevel as most hotels are huddled together. And there's nothing like watching the colours changing across the gleaming white snowy panorama under crisp blue skies, right from the comfort of the hotel bar or, better still, your own bed, because all rooms come with the same killer views.