Chamonix is property pinnacle of all the Alpine ski resorts
Chamonix is the best bet for buyers seeking a property in the French Alps, according to new rankings. The iconic ski resort at the foot of Mont Blanc outshone 20 others in an index taking into account snow coverage (and snow-making facilities), size, affordability, accessibility and year-round appeal. Close runners up were the resorts St-martin de Belleville, St-gervais, Les Gets and Morzine.
Surrounded by the towering peaks of the Mont Blanc massif, Chamonix was a popular climbing destination long before winter sports became fashionable and actually attracts more tourists in summer than winter. Skiing took off at the start of the 20th century and the inaugural Winter Olympic Games were held here in 1924. Both Switzerland and Italy are realistic day trips, and with Geneva airport only an hour’s drive away, the resort scores highly for accessibility.
Property prices in Chamonix have risen by 10% over the past two years; apartments cost between €6,500 and €9,500/m2 and chalet prices start around €10,000/m2. This represents “excellent value for money” given what the valley has to offer, according to specialist mountain agents Alpine Property Search, which compiled the rankings.
“A resort with year-round appeal and ongoing infrastructure investment is a safe bet for potential buyers,” said agency founder David Bhagat. “The Compagnie du Mont Blanc is committing €477m over the next 10 years to upgrade the lift system. And with two million accredited overnight stays each summer this is a dual-season resort par excellence with visitors enjoying the climbing, walking, parascending, canyoning, mountain-biking, golf etc. There is very little ski-in ski-out property and of the five ski areas only Brevent-flegere are liftconnected, meaning a complimentary bus journey up or down the valley is necessary should you wish to try them all. This does not appeal to everyone. Yet for those who relish the idea of being at the world centre of mountaineering, at the foot of Mont Blanc and with total vertical of 2,000m available to ski, Chamonix’s breadth of piste and off-piste skiing makes it a strong draw.”
Alpine Property Search looked at 21 French Alpine ski resorts in five different regions. These were the Three Valleys (Courchevel, Meribel, La Tania, Les Menuires, Val Thorens, St-martin-de-belleville), L’espace Killy (Val d’isère, Tignes), Chamonix and Evasion Mont Blanc (Combloux, Megève, St Gervais, Les Contamines), Les Portes du Soleil (Les Gets, Morzine, Avoriaz, Châtel) and Le Grand Massif (Samoëns, Flaine).
The old centre of Chamonix