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Saint Martin de Belleville

by Adam Attew
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FACTS FOR LES TROIS VALLEE (St Martin de Belleville)

SEASON START & END: Open mid December to late April
SKI ALTITUDE: 1100-3230m (St Martin de Belleville 1,450m-2437m)
PISTES: 52% Beginner / 36% Intermediate / 12% Expert (St Martin de Belleville- 8 Blue / 5 Red / 1 Black)
LIFTS: 160 (Funicular-2 / Cable cars-4 / Gondola-34 / Chair lift-59 / Drag lifts-37 / Moving Carpet-22)
SLOPES: 339 Pistes for a total of 600km
SNOW: 329 snow cannons 53% pistes with snow making capabilities
LIFT TICKET 2021/22 Ski Pass: Adult: 66 Euros – 1 day / 330 Euros – 6 days
LANGUAGE: French
AIRPORT: Nearest airports are Annecy 96km / Chambéry 104km / Grenoble 167km / Geneva 183km / Lyon 181km
TRAIN: Nearest station is Moûtiers Salins Brides-Les-Bains (20km) 

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St Martin de Belleville night

TOWN

Les trois Vallées, the famous French mega-ski area with km after km of pistes covers the famous mountain resorts of Courchevel, Meribel and Val Thorens; but Les Trois Vallées has a little known secret that you must keep to yourself- Saint Martin de Belleville. A picturesque, little village hiding out to the west of the entire ski region; this is something very different to the rest of the resorts of Les Trois Vallées. Unlike many resorts with purpose built wooden ski chalets the village holds onto its rural, mountain farm heritage. With 150 years of farming history, many of the original farm buildings still stand having been converted into cosy chalets or gastronomic restaurants. This is not to say that farming has left the valley for good, there is still a strong presence of fine local produce from the area especially in the local gastronomy. Saint Martin de Belleville seems to have kept hold of its soul with its rustic charm, cosy stone and wood clad buildings and fine cuisine. 

SKIING

From Saint Martin de Belleville, one can access the entirety of Les Trois Vallées and its 600km of piste. The resorts that connect together to form Les Trois Vallées are Courchevel, Méribel, Val Thorens, Les Menuires, Orelle and Brides-les-Bains and of course Saint Martin de Belleville. Of course this creates one of the largest ski resorts, with what feels like neverending skiing possibilities and types of terrain. At peak holiday times, the slopes can get busy, but this is the beauty of Saint Martin de Belleville, because even during busy times the slopes can be quiet and it is not unusual to find yourself the only one on the piste! 

Saint Martin de Belleville has two main ski lifts, a gondola and a speedy chair which delivers to Tougnete – the top of the mountain.  From here one can ski down to Meribel or access other lifts which lead to Menuires, Val Thorens and other routes to Meribel. The pistes around Saint Martin de Belleville are a pure delight, with various blues and reds to satisfy most skiers. 

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St Martin de Belleville

BEGINNERS-
In the town there are 3 beginner areas, once these have been conquered, the blue from the top of the gondola is a great next step.

INTERMEDIATE –
Intermediate skiers will love the whole area of Saint Martin de Belleville, not too many people and a good distance from the top of the mountain back to the village.

ADVANCED-
Whilst not the hardest skiing, the mountain has some great slopes and one does not have to travel far into Les Trois Vallee to push oneself.

– OFF PISTE –
Les Trois Vallee is famous for its off piste skiing, however Saint Martin De Belleville has a great ‘Organised’ off piste called Riondaz, which is part of the three ‘Liberty Ride zones’ in the area.

RESTAURANTS
The cuisine in the village and on the mountain are outstanding. In town we lunched at the delightful Le Montagnard, try sitting on the deck in the sun whilst sipping on wine. For rustic gourmet food head over to Simple Meilleur, owned by Michelin chefs you will not be disappointed. There are many fine restaurants on the mountain, but we particularly like Le Corbeleys.

WHERE TO STAY
For the ultimate in rustic luxury, stay at the 5 star, 3 michelin La Bouitte it makes for the most unbelievable experience, known as the best restaurant in the French Alps. For the classic ‘Chalet’ experience check out the White Mountain Chalet Verdet for its cosy set up and exquisite food.

For more information on the resort or to book your trip see online at Saint Martin de Belleville.

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St Martin de Belleville Piste Map

Author

  • Adam is equally at home in the mountains or ploughing through a rare steak with a side of G&T. With over 40 years skiing experience from ski touring to Giant Slalom, Adam is a BASI qualified Ski and Telemark instructor and is also a member of the prestigious Kandahar Ski Club. Despite the G&Ts; health and nutrition are a way of life for Adam who has lived Paleo or 'eating like a caveman' for over 15 years. When there is time aside from all of these antics he is also an accomplished Alpine Landscape artist specialising in winter scenes.

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