Considered by many as a true mountain sports destination, Chamonix is as much revered for its mountain climbing and extreme sports as it is for its skiing. Whilst the imposing Mont Blanc is, of course, a big pull, it’s the dazzling array of pistes that has positioned it as a go-to for both families and experienced skiers on the trail of fresh, virgin powder and high-quality family-friendly infrastructure. With this in mind, properties for sale in Chamonix are consistently in demand from both international and domestic buyers. Take a look at our handpicked selection of apartments and chalets in Chamonix.
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Unlike purpose-built ski resorts, the charismatic village of Chamonix has evolved organically over time, from simple farming to the mountain sports mecca it now is. This means that there is a wide variety of properties for sale, from large and small apartments to chalets and also townhouses in some areas.
With older resorts that have this historic dynamic to its property stock, it’s very important to consider the age of the property and how this works into any plans for the future. For example, older properties can generally be more affordable, but often require lots of renovation costs. Whereas new-builds are often bought off-plan which means you won’t be able to use them until they’re complete, but they won’t need renovation, come with lower notary fees (buying costs) and also have the potential to recuperate VAT from the purchase price. Take a look at our Complete Guide to Buying Property in the French Alps to learn more.
Whilst Chamonix is one of France’s first ski resorts and is, therefore, an established destination, it has continued to revamp and improve its infrastructure. Last season, works on the new €20m revamped gondola at Flégère became the most recently completed phase of the overall €477m investment plan for the resort.
This new lift increased capacity by over 300%, taking the original 450 skiers per hour to 2,000 per hour. The journey now only takes six minutes and its mono-cable design is the first of its kind in France, reaching an eye-watering seven metres per second.
Future upgrades include a complete revamp of the buildings in the base area of Chamonix along with the Charamillon gondola in the Le Tour area of Chamonix.
Whilst property prices in Chamonix can reach up to €13,000 per sqm for new and well-located properties, generally, high-quality new-build apartments by reputable developers can be found for around €11,000 per sqm depending on their location.
Due to the resort’s nature as a year-round destination with appeal that is much wider than a ski-only focussed resort, property prices in Chamonix have risen steadily over the past five years with 2019 seeing an increase of 5.4% – the highest price growth recorded in the French Alps (source: UBS).
Chamonix’s endless lift system extends up to 3,842metres (that’s 2,807 metres above the resort) with highlights including the 20km glacier run of Vallée Blanché. It’s little wonder that locals refer to Chamonix as ‘Le Grand Ski’. With the terrain divided between a number of smaller resorts, including Les Houchés and Argentier, no two days in Chamonix are the same.
Increasingly, Chamonix has also evolved into a mecca for extreme adventure sports, with expert providers offering everything from mountain climbing to paragliding, dog sledging, canyoning and speed-riding – the latest craze combining paragliding with skiing for die-hard daredevils.
Today, the resort combines fantastic restaurants with boutique hotels and a buzzing bar scene. It’s a treat to stroll through its pedestrianised town centre and stop for coffee and a pain-au-chocolat at one of the café’s bordering the tree-lined banks of the river, or visit its open-air market on Saturday mornings. The village is home to a fantastic selection of bars and restaurants, including Albert 1er which has been awarded 2 Michelin Stars.
Its proximity to Geneva and its year-round active lifestyle has attracted a vibrant mix of locals and internationals to settle and set up shop, creating a uniquely cosmopolitan, colourful and dynamic entrepreneurial scene amongst the 10,000-something residents.