For sale €9m
At 6,500 sq ft, this new-build, mega-chalet in Val d’isère has been designed for entertaining on a large scale. There are seven en-suite bedrooms and a large gym with a swimming pool, sauna, hammam and massage rooms, as well as an indoor climbing wall for whiteout days. Savills (00 33 688 02 37 47) in the next five years will result in an 18-minute gondola ride linking the two resorts. By 2021, the total ski area will measure almost 300 miles, making it larger than Espace Killy (Tignes & Val d’isère) and the Paradiski ski area. ‘Before they were linked and, in order to compete, both resorts developed a great deal of year-round activities to bring revenue into the area, so it’s very popular for mountain biking, road cycling, kayaking, rafting, climbing and trekking,’ says Heather. ‘Prices compare favourably to the big world-famous resorts. The average price for a prime property in Alpe d’huez is about €6,500 per sq m,’ she adds.
The elephant in the British sitting room is currency. In the wake of the EU Referendum and the fall of sterling, Swiss Alpine property is 8.6% more costly for us and French and Austrian chalets are now 7.6% more expensive than in May.
The exchange rate is ‘paramount’, says Jeremy. ‘It has a huge impact on buying decisions.’ Although it’s too early in the season to measure the impact on British buyers, he adds that the invitation to ‘hedge’ against sterling by taking out a mortgage in Swiss Francs or Euros plus interest rates, which are often so low that it would be ‘almost criminal not to borrow money’, the team isn’t feeling too pessimistic about the season ahead. Plus, according to Knight Frank’s network of Alpine offices, the market has widened— in 2010, the French, Swiss, Russians and British dominated; in 2016, they’ve been joined by the Germans, Swedish, Dutch and members of the UAE.