To many of us at Athena Advisers, Val d’Isère in the French Alps was either our first home or is now a fond second, so we really are the experts if you’re looking for a property for sale. Owning a property here means superb skiing that’s sporty and tree-lined with industry-defining cuisine on your doorstep and world-renowned nightlife just a stroll away. From some of the most prestigious ski chalets in the world, to beautifully designed new apartments right next to the best slopes, our property experts will guide you through the buying process from financing to VAT rebates and purchase completion. We can even help you design and furnish your property. Explore our handpicked portfolio of ski properties for sale in Val d’Isère.
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Buying a Property in Val d’Isère with Roman Carel, Partner, Athena Advisers.
This was my home, and it still is. If you have lived in or visited Val d’Isère, you know it’s like a magnet. It pulls you back for the next experience with friends and family. At 1,850 metres, it is a high-altitude resort where you can now do almost any alpine activity you can think of…it’s about having fun, as much as possible. The skiing is sporty and technical and you can have just as much fun off the slope, too. It’s a melting pot of international travellers who have made friends with the locals. They come back here year-on-year to mingle in the village they all love.
I believe one of the magical aspects of Val d’Isère is the sense of belonging around the activity of skiing. You find old friends who share the same passion. There is no other topic – you just share good food, quality moments, extremely healthy lifestyle and being together. It’s a foodie heaven, where you can go to the farm shop yourself to buy the local cheese like the Beaufort, have a world-class meal in one of more modern restaurants or indulge yourself in some real haute-alpine cuisine.
“Clients come year-after-year to Val d’Isère because when you are here you feel the warmth, the ambiance. After a few days here, you start to know a few people and it’s easier and easier and you feel more and more comfortable.” Pierre Cerboneschi, Owner of Le Blizzard and La Mourra.
Val d’Isère village urbanism is now all about timeless and fine architecture where stone and old wood dominate. High quality developments in prime locations are always in high demand and it’s a place that receives interest from the whole world which increases competition between buyers looking to buy a property for sale in Val d’Isère – whether it be one of the most luxurious chalets in the ski resort to super stylish apartments with far-reaching views and outstanding facilities.
From long lunches at our favourite hotel, Le Blizzard, dinners at elegant La Mourra, to going ice-skating with the kids, drinking hot chocolate at the top of the mountain or racing with your friends on the BMW ice circuit, you can spend happy weeks soaking up the atmosphere in this village loved for its community and spirit. Val d’Isère is the perfect family adventure destination.
In Val d’Isère, new plots for development are becoming increasingly rare following the cancellation of the resort’s latest urbanism plan. Though brand-new properties are hard to come by, a handful of new-build opportunities can still be found such as the amazing Vail Lodge project. In addition, Val d’Isère has a great resale market with unique apartments and chalets returning to the market. Generally speaking, ski apartments can be found throughout the resort, both in and around the centre and in the resort’s smaller hamlets. Val d’Isère is home to some of the most opulent chalets for sale in the French Alps with incredible architecture, amazing views and an impressive array of private spa facilities. These palatial properties, such as the seven-bedroom Eagle Nest chalet, tend to be located just outside of the centre and or within one of Val d’Isère’s exclusive residential neighbourhoods.
Even though Val d’Isère is a mature resort, it never rests on its laurels and always pushes boundaries. The best example of this is the €200m ‘Le Coin’ forthcoming regeneration, which is a huge undertaking that will redesign around a fifth of the resort. In addition to redesigning an area which is currently dated in terms of architecture and design, it will also bring two new hotels, a bus station, restaurants, cafes and shops.
Investment is also continuously made in ski lift infrastructure. Over the last few years, investments include a €10m brand new gondola from La Daille to the Folie Douce, which tripled the capacity and halved the journey time. Then more recently, the former cable car summit at the top of the Solaise is now the new highest hotel in the French Alps. Called Le Refuge de Solaise, the hotel features a pool, a restaurant, 16 rooms and jaw-dropping views – it’s the latest sign that this resort continues to push the entire ski resort development sector forward.
An old historic centre that seems locked in time, a ski-in ski-out paradise and many little neighbourhoods dotted around that are a skip (or a skate) away from the slopes, there are lots of different areas to consider when buying a property in Val d’Isère. Each has a different price range and therefore buyers need to consider their needs carefully. Sunlight, privacy, slope accessibility, price; they can all change dramatically from one area to the next.
Yet, whether it’s the piste-side area of Legettaz to the peaceful hamlet of Le Fornet, the one thing that connects them all is the care that has gone into preserving the authenticity of the resort. This desire to protect the history of the resort is even echoed in the new-build residential properties here too, which are extremely rare and always in high demand. Anything new, be it a beautiful chalet and small collection of apartments, always emulates the local architecture and does not compete with it.
Though one of the most sought-after destinations in the French Alps, new-build opportunities in this iconic resort are few and far between, which means that new-build properties for sale in Val d’Isère tend to be more expensive than those in other resorts.
However, with the resort constantly seeing high demand and improving its offerings each year, there is potential for capital appreciation and investors who decide to rent out their property can expect good returns if they market their properties well. Take a look at our complete guide to renting out your property in the French Alps to learn more.
According to the 2021 Alpine Property Focus report from UBS which examines the property market across 41 key Alpine resorts, Val d’Isère saw prime property prices rise by 4.1% between 2020 and 2021, the highest price increase in the French Alps.
Whilst skiing in Val d’Isère dates back to the 1930s following the opening of a drag lift on the Solaise pistes and the resort’s first cable car, the resort’s history stems back to the Middle Ages and its 17th-century church still stands today at the heart of the village.
Thanks to its challenging terrain, Val d’Isère has hosted a number of major skiing events such as the 1992 Winter Olympic Games and the resort has produced a number of Olympic champions. One of the most famous residents is Jean-Claude Killy, the triple gold medalist after which the Espace Killy ski domain is named.
Thanks to the extensive lift network which connects Val d’Isère with neighbouring Tignes, the resort boasts easy access to more than 300km of slopes which range from challenging pistes for advanced skiers to gentle slopes geared towards intermediates and beginners. Experienced skiers should check out La Face, a notoriously challenging black run that was built for the 1992 Albertville Winter Olympic Games.
As well as offering access to superb skiing, this resort also has an electric après-ski culture with a dizzying array of top restaurants and bars. One of the most iconic après-ski spots is La Folie Douce which is located at the top of the Daille Gondola and has bars, various eateries and, of course, live music.
A Famille Plus resort, Val d’Isère is a great choice for families thanks to its infrastructure and plethora of child-friendly activities on and off the slopes such as ice skating, swimming and dog sledging. There are two ski areas for beginners in the resort and there is also a good selection of ski and snowboarding schools.
Though summers in Val d’Isère are not as busy as those in resorts of a lower altitude, there are plenty of outdoor activities to enjoy during the warmer months such as hiking, cycling, horse riding and tennis. In addition, it is possible to ski on the Grande Motte glacier in neighbouring Tignes which remains skiable for 10 months of the year
Whilst the most active part of the resort, the historic centre has retained its authentic Alpine charm. Wander through its cobbled streets and you will find an impressive array of cafes, restaurants, bars and shops as well as the iconic baroque church. In this part of the resort, you will also find the Centre Aquasportif sports complex boasts swimming pools, a gym, spa facilities and rock climbing as well as wellness and beauty treatments.
Outside of the historic centre, Val d’Isère has numerous charming hamlets and neighbourhoods, each with its own ambience and appeal.
Le Fornet: Set back from the very heart of the resort, Le Fornet is easily one of the most picturesque hamlets in Val d’Isère. This calm and tranquil neighbourhood is composed of typical Savoyard-style chalets with beautiful wood and stone facades. The neighbourhood is served by the Fornet ski lift and has a small selection of eateries including L’Atelier d’Edmond which has been awarded two Michelin stars.
La Daille: This neighbourhood is located at the entrance of Val d’Isère and is characterised by high-rise apartments and a handful of chalets. Whilst it certainly is not the most beautiful part of the resort, La Daille has great lift access and the village centre is just 10 minutes away.
Le Legettaz: Just a five-minute drive or 15-minute walk from the village centre, Le Legettaz is a peaceful neighbourhood with jaw-dropping views and beautiful properties built in a traditional style. One of the great things about this area is that many of the properties here boast ski-in ski-out access.