LIT­TLE BLACK BOOK

The Weekend Australian - Travel - - Northern Hemisphere Ski Holidays -

SNOW­BOARDER Alex ‘‘Chumpy’’ Pul­lin from Mans­field, Vic­to­ria, be­gan com­pet­ing in­ter­na­tion­ally at 14 and is a Snow Aus­tralia am­bas­sador. In Jan­uary he be­came Aus­tralia’s first snow­board world cham­pion at La Molina, Spain, and in March won a World Cup ti­tle in Switzer­land. More: alex­chumpy­pullin.com. Des­per­ate to get back to: The Chutes on Mt Buller’s outer ridge­line. I love rid­ing Aussie back coun­try. Per­fect place for in­dul­gence: Hang­ing out in the cool lit­tle wine cel­lars and fam­ily-run restau­rants along the main street of Val­ma­lenco in the Ital­ian Alps. DEALS OF THE WEEK Clever Club Med: Make an early-bird book­ing be­fore July 3 to save $600 a per­son on Club Med’s Euro­pean ski pack­ages. Se­lect from re­sorts in France, Switzer­land or Italy, in­clud­ing Val­morel’s new chalet and apart­ments open­ing in De­cem­ber (with kids’ club from four months to 17 years). More: 1800 258 263; clubmed.com.au. Must visit: Mans­field, on your way to Mt Buller, for great cafes and ski shops with lots of per­son­al­ity. Dis­tinc­tive ho­tel: Tirol­er­hof Ho­tel in Tux Val­ley, Aus­tria, for fab­u­lous moun­tain views. Whistler white­out: Visit Canada’s 2010 Win­ter Olympics hub on a seven-night pack­age at Whistler Black­comb’s Town Plaza Con­do­mini­ums; from $865 a per­son twin-share, in­clud­ing a six-day lift pass. Valid for travel Jan­uary 2-Fe­bru­ary 2, 2012. Book and pay by Au­gust 31. More: 1300 136 997; ski­max.com.au. Ultimate eco-ad­ven­ture: Cross­coun­try ski­ing at Mt Stir­ling, Vic­to­ria, among the moun­tain ash and snow gums. Stand-out af­ter­noon tea ex­pe­ri­ence: Watch­ing the sun­set on a calm af­ter­noon at Mt Buller’s sum­mit while shar­ing a drink with friends. Invit­ing culi­nary des­ti­na­tion: Koflers restau­rant, Mt Buller, ac­ces­si­ble only on skis or snow­board. Favourite travel web­site: Snowaus­tralia.com, a great source of info on Aussie ski re­sorts. Ideal for new­com­ers to the sport. Best-spent travel dol­lars: An up­grade on a flight to Ja­pan so I felt ready to get out on the slopes. Heav­enly high: Plan a seven­night US ski hol­i­day in Heav­enly, in­clud­ing a stay at Aston Lake­land Vil­lage on Lake Ta­hoe in a deluxe king stu­dio, a seven-day lift pass and ski shut­tles; from $899 a per­son twin-share. All rooms fea­ture bal­conies, kitchen fa­cil­i­ties and fire­places. Un­til Fe­bru­ary 16, 2012. More: val­ue­tours.com.au.

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