Megève is an upmarket ski resort town set in the Evasion Mont Blanc region in Savoie. It’s retained a medieval traditional feel with its beautiful architecture, pedestrianised town centre and cobbled streets but has been modernised tastefully creating a picturesque mountain town. Its ski resort status was the work of the famous Rothschild family as Baronness Noemie Rothschild wanted to create a luxury family ski resort that surpassed the excellence and luxury of St Moritz, Switzerland’s exclusive ski resort.
Today Megeve is regarded as one of the finest luxury resorts in the Alps attracting celebrities and the elite. It may not shout the loudest but it retains its dignity and offers a quiet, scenic retreat for both holiday makers and expats.
For those considering buying property in Megeve the town is conveniently close to Geneva airport allowing short breaks and weekends away. The chalets here may be towards the higher end of the price range although their architecture is beautiful, with many renovated from unused barns and farmhouses. For those that intend to buy property for the holiday rental market a good return can be made so long as you target the right market. Megeve is known to attract the fairly affluent end of the mountain holiday customer base who often expect more luxurious accommodation as opposed to budget holidays.
As a functioning mountain town it remains busy throughout the year. It’s a popular holiday destination for
Parisiennes and so the slopes can get quite busy in the school holidays but, as it’s largely undiscovered by the Brits, midweek skiing is fairly quiet and you could get the pistes to yourself.
Megeve resides within the Evasion Mont Blanc ski region and so visitors have access to almost 450km of varied pistes. There are three ski areas on the mountains surrounding Megeve, Mont d’Arbois, Rochebrune and Le Jaillet. Mont d’Arboi and Rochebrune are interlinked by the ski lift network and Rochebrune can be accessed via the gonolda from the centre of the village.
Le Jaillet is found on the other side of the valley and is a little further away, approximately 15mins walk. Alternatively you can catch a horse drawn taxi to arrive at the ski lifts in style.
Casual and recreational skiers and snowboarders will find the slopes around Megeve particularly enjoyable, with it’s large number of wide cruising blues and reds boasting stunning views of the valley and mountains. Lift passes can be bought to open up the whole of the Evasion Mont Blanc area and the whole Mont Blanc area including Chamonix Valley and so Megeve is a great base for the full range of ski & board abilities and preferences. Megeve isn’t known for it’s free riding off piste areas despite having some amazing powder fields, glades and bowls but, as is the case with all fresh snowfall, it won’t stay untouched for long and so you need to know where to go. The two main areas, the highest in the region, are Mont Joly and Cote 2000 and if you don’t know the area guides are recommended.
The ski areas are relatively low altitude ( 1,100-2,353m) and so many of the pistes are beautifully lined with trees although the snow conditions can be a little touch and go at the beginning & end of the season despite the piste maintenance and snow cannon system. So Megeve may be more suited to those who enjoy to linger a little longer over breakfast and lunch and enjoy what the town has to offer, and there’s definitely more than just skiing!
The resort features a beauty farm, a climbing wall, a sports centre, a museum, French linguistic courses, and a cinema. There is also a local market held on Friday mornings. Megève is renowned for its sublime gastronomy, and has a vast range of diverse eateries. The nightlife is vibrant and varied, with 20 bars, nine discos, a casino, a piano bar and a wide selection of clubs.
In the summer months Megeve offers a fantastic range of activities for adults and children to enjoy.
The lake at Combloux is a great place for a swim or a walk along the man made beach at its shore. There’s also an outdoor swimming pool with water slides and an indoor pool for those rare bad weather days. Hiking is popular in the area with lots of varied paths and trails through the forests and up the mountains. Mountain biking is another popular summer pursuit and bikers are well catered for with downhill and cross country trails as well as some fantastic areas to explore off the beaten track. There’s also a summer luge, hot air balling, white water rafting, golf, horse riding, Via Ferrata and canyoning.
The town is also a lovely place for shopping, or simply strolling around and sitting outside a cafe sipping coffee.