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James Bond and Mont Blanc. Chamonix is likely to make you think of one or the other. They go together - the thrills of climbing the icy ravines of Mont Blanc, hurtling down La Vallée Blanche, or sipping your drink with an epic backdrop are all very Bond. If you're serious about skiing Chamonix go straight to our Guru's list of the best places to stay in Chamonix.
If you still need convincing that Chamonix is the perfect destination for you, here are some good reasons to visit.
Bond's Chamonix - Dramatic Winter Sports Playground with Added Après-ski
Beloved by winter sports enthusiasts from Olympic standard downwards, the best places to stay in Chamonix provide the opportunity to enjoy some of the world's most dramatic, and scarcely believable, challenges. You've seen 007's stunt-tastic descent in 'The World Is Not Enough' - that's what it's like. And if you prefer to take your ski chase off piste there are plenty of really thrilling rides, though for some of them you'll need to get yourself a guide (read local agent), as there's a real threat of crevasses.
As far as the après-ski is concerned, like Bond, you'll need to know where to go. But this is where your local 'contact' will be able to point you in the right direction. And there are plenty of Brits and Scandis here to cast as agents of your megalomaniac nemesis.
Chamonix for Mont Blanc
For many people the highlight of a visit to Chamonix is the view from the Aiguille du Midi cable car, as you head towards perpendicular cliffs. For some it's the view from the top of Mont Blanc, a breathtaking vista of Alps. Another favourite is the chocolate box view of Mont Blanc as it towers above… as you sip hot chocolate in a cosy Chamonix cafe? The highest mountain in the Alps she, and her attendant glaciers, both crown and dwarf Chamonix.
From the best places to stay in Chamonix you can find the more active end of the Blanc fan club as Chamonix is the 'home' of Apline climbing. Mont Blanc takes two to three days to climb. It's snowy but not steep, but you do need crampon experience. Nights are spent in huts and it's pretty busy in summer. There's also plenty of rock climbing and mountain biking.
The Best Places to Stay in Chamonix for Mont Blanc
- Le Jeu de Paume has a traditional alpine lodge feel, with woody decor, lots of big open fires and generous leather armchairs. This hotel also has its own mini après-ski scene, and a restaurant with a reputation for being one of the best in the Chamonix valley.
- Hotel Oustalet is another charmingly traditional feeling hotel with a chalet feel. Just a few steps from the Aiguille du Midi cable car, this hotel also has lovely, sunny terraces.
- L' Hermitage is centrally located, but the views - from your private terrace - will astound.
- The Hotel Eden is ideal if you're looking for a home way from home - but with spectacular views. Only 100ms from the Flegere cable car, this hotel has rooms, family suites or self catering options.
- Le Labrador's balconies open right onto the golf course - and behind it Mont Blanc - so it's a good choice for a summer visit. Its 35 rooms and three suites are comfortable and affordable.
- If you're here to ski and you don't want frills and fuss, Les Lanchers is perfect for you. Simple and contemporary, this hotel has private balconies and mountain views.
The Best Places to Stay in Chamonix for Bond
- Five stars worth of grand 19th Century hotel renovation, the Hotel Mont Blanc is a luxuriously chic option with a ver Bond-esque bar.
- If you're looking for a hideout, you need the Auberge du Bois Prin. There are only 10 rooms, it's traditional and owner managed. Also great for summer walking trips, it's easy to imagine making a quick getaway towards Mont Blanc via the Brevent-Flegere piste, only 300ms away.
- If you want to be in the thick of things, Le Hameau Albert 1er is just 2mins from the pedestrianised centre of town. Its restaurant has two Michelin stars, and it has a bar and spa you can imagine Bond unwinding in after a day dodging bullets on the slopes.
Still not sure which is the best place to stay in Chamonix for you?
Best Hotels in Chamonix
Rocky Pop Hotel 148 rooms from $57Chamonix (Les Houches)
The 3* Rocky Pop Hotel is located in the town of Chamonix and offers colourful, contemporary accommodation. Head out on an adventure during the day before coming back to a hearty dinner of either gourmet burgers or more traditional French cuisine. A fun and unfussy stay, great for familiesFamilies - Rocky Pop Hotel has family rooms, a kids playground and children's meals at the restaurant-perfect for a family ski tripActive Holiday - Whether you visit during the winter or the summer there are plenty of activities on offer locally to keep you busy!Skiing - The hotel is just a few minutes from the nearest ski lift and also offers equipment hire and storage facilitiesGreat walks - Make the most out of the beautiful summer weather to go hiking all over the surrounding mountains
Les Lanchers 19 rooms from $101Chamonix
Recently renovated ski hotel just a few steps from the Flégère cable car offering exceptional hospitality at a reasonable price. Choose between 15 cosy renovated rooms and 8 superior rooms in the modern extension. Service is outstanding, the vibe informal and the food local and excellent.Skiing - Great location near the Flegere cable carValue chicGroupsFamilies
Hotel Eden, Chamonix 31 rooms from $111Les Praz de Chamonix
Simple modern bedrooms and family suites plus six self catering apartments just 100m from the Flegere cable car. Michelin recommended restaurant offering contemporary and classic french cuisine. A great choice for families.Skiing - 100m from the cable car. Ski back to the village.Active HolidayViews - Views of the Chamonix Valley and Mont Blanc
Le Morgane 56 rooms from $113Chamonix
A contemporary hotel with an excellent Michelin starred restaurant and spa. All rooms and suites have private terraces with wonderful views. The rooms are cosy with light wood and subtle lighting. An understated ski hotel with delicious food.Foodies - Michelin starred diningSkiingSwimming Pool - Indoor PoolSpa
Le Labrador 35 rooms from $114Les Praz de Chamonix
Located right on the golf course, the Labrador works for both summer and winter stays. The wooden building is an attractive mix of alpine and Scandanavian with ample spa facilities for the less energetic.Golf - Right on Chamonix's golf course.SkiingSpaGreat walks - Good for walkers.
Hotel Oustalet 15 rooms from $131Chamonix
A charmingly traditional hotel. Rooms and suites with a mountain chalet feel - all wooden walls and beds with lovely sunny terraces. A cosy sitting room bar with fireplace, outdoor swimming pool for the summer, and during the winter a sauna and hot tub.Skiing - Stone's throw from the Aiguille du Midi cable carSwimming Pool - Lovely Outdoor PoolGreat walks - Good for walkers.
Le Jeu de Paume 29 rooms from $160Chamonix (Le Lavancher)
Traditionnally decorated with wood galore yet all modern comforts plus extras including swimming pool, sauna and hammam. Great views both up to Argentiere and down to Chamonix and ideally situated for skiers being midway between the two. Well respected "Le Rosebud" restaurant.SkiingViews - Great views up to Argentiere and over the Chamonix peaksSwimming Pool - Indoor PoolGreat walks - Good for walkers.
L' Hermitage 25 rooms from $170Chamonix
A gorgeous hotel with two separate chalets in an excellent location. Breathtaking views just steps from the town centre. Luxurious chalet rooms with wooden beams, elegant furniture, sumptuous bedding, and huge private terraces. Great for families or groups of friends.SkiingFamiliesGroupsViews - Stunning views of the surrounding mountains
Auberge du Bois Prin 10 rooms from $224Chamonix
Unpretentious traditional hotel in a hillside position overlooking Chamonix with outstanding views from each of the 10 bedrooms over Mont Blanc. Michelin starred dining specialising in organic produce from the garden. Only 300m from the Brevent-Flegere pistes.Skiing - Huge range of skiing including the famous Vallee BlancheRestaurant - Michelin starred diningGreat walks - 350km of waymarked trails in the surrounding area.Spa
Le Faucigny 28 rooms from $246Chamonix (118 Place de l'Église)
Chic and cosy interiors create a unique balance between a traditional home and a modern guest house. Rooms feature stylish furniture, comfortable beds and are designed to be super functional even in a small space. A duplex room, bunk beds and board games make it an ideal choice for families.Local exploring - In the heart of Chamonix, close to churches, traditional farms and old-style chalets, with wonderful views of the mountains.Active Holiday - Being in a popular ski resort area, there are lots of outdoor activities for guests to indulge in.Full of characterViews - Great views from hotel
Le Hameau Albert 1er 33 rooms from $257Chamonix
The ultimate hotel for mountain mad foodies! Two Michelin starred dining, along with both contemporary and classic style accommodation in the centre of Chamonix. In addition top notch spa facilities to ease those aching muscles after a day on the slopes.SkiingSpa - Offering full range of massages and body treatments.Swimming Pool - Indoor/Outdoor pool facing Mont BlancViews - Superb views of Mont BlancRecommended by - Relais & Chateaux, I Escape
Hotel Mont Blanc, Chamonix 40 rooms from $274Chamonix
A grand 19th century hotel renovation with Five Stars, a gourmet restaurant, and luxurious spa. Traditional elements - black and white chequered floors, and high ceilings with huge windows - blend with contemporary design for classic chic effect. A spoiling hotel for a ski holiday.Skiing - The hotel operates a free shutttle bus to the slopes5* Luxury - Very high service standards.Active HolidayWellbeing
L'Heliopic 102 rooms from $400Chamonix (Chamonix-Mont-Blanc)
L'Heliopic is situated in the town of Chamonix just a short distance from the slopes. Enjoy smart contemporary accommodation with stunning mountain views. The fantastic restaurant specialises in traditional French cuisine. With a kids play area it's perfect for a family break.Total relaxation - After a long day skiing come back and unwind in the Turkish steam bath or sauna!Active Holiday - Make the most out of l'Heliopic's location to hit the slopes all day!Great walks - In the summer months head off hiking around the surrounding mountainsViews - Great views from hotel