Archive for the ‘Margaritka’ Category


Easter was late but there’s always a last Hurrah!!!

April 16, 2017

We were all a bit worried that with Easter so late and snow a bit short on the ground this Winter, would our final guests be able to ski much at all? But, we should never have worried – the ‘Portes du Soleil’ and especially Avoriaz never let’s us down!!!!

Louise who had already visited us once this Winter came back with hubby Steve and their charming, young daughter Zoe who was quite an accomplished skier. Having ski’d just around Avoriaz on their first day. I was still able to show them the route to Switzerland (Les Crosets) under warm, deep blue skies and virtually empty pistes on the second day. And then all around Chatel Linga on really good snow, on the third – with temperatures having cooled a tad. In between we were also able to find an adventurous bit of off piste or two, in fine Spring conditions – the ridge above and parallel to Arare with great views down the valley to Morzine and beyond, the run that runs parallel to the Brochaux chair near the Cascade to Brochaux (Abricotine Valley), plus the bowl/ area at the top of the Abricotine Valley near the drag lift that connects with Switzerland (Grande Conche run). Infact, in parts the off piste was in better condition than the piste (so long as you could navigate in and around the protruding rocks) !!! Although challenged, I think people enjoyed themselves and it gave a better flavour to lunch or kick to the ‘Apres Ski’ drinks. It also still left the ‘Coupe du Monde’ and the skiing in the ‘Fornet’ bowl to be done on their remaining couple of days!

Thanks to all our guests for another great season and for allowing us to use their images/ pics on this blog – hope you’ve all enjoyed. Here are the final ones of the Winter 16/17 season:







Spring really did arrive early this year!!!

April 11, 2017

The weather in late March and early April was just fantastic. Bright sunny days and warm afternoons meant some great skiing in the mornings followed by lazy, long lunches and possibly some sitting in deckchairs absorbing the rays for some. Others, kept on skiing in somewhat heavy conditions (expected at this time of year) with the snow on the Avoriaz side of the mountain remaining pretty steadfast. We were still able to ski down to Switzerland (Les Crosets) and get to Chatel:)))  Although, getting to the Café des Sports in Morgins had to be put on the back burner til next season – we did visit quite often this Winter though!!

In April The Foxes returned this year (having missed last Winter) with our good friends Ian (Chef) and Fliss Brennan who came back for the second time this Winter! All ski’d lots, lunched well, enjoyed the sunshine and maybe, had a drink or two whilst enjoying the butiful, long Alpine evenings. They were also as warm and generous as ever – Thank You guys!

Then another new regular Judy Scott Garland arrived with her son Benjamin, cousin Sheila and friends – Louise, Jonah and Georgia. Cousin and friends were relatively new to skiing – enjoyed their lessons and Louise was amazed by the new Panorama she could experience when she ventured up/ out of the Lindarets bowl. And, felt a great sense of achievement having ski’d the Blue run, Combe a Floret through the trees back into the bowl. Some good games of ‘Chicken Charades’ and ‘Cards Against Humanity’ were also enjoyed after dinner.

All were amazed they were still able to ski so many runs, even in the Morzine/ Les Gets area and lunches outside in the warm Spring sunshine were just perfect. Here are the pics:








Sunshine, Spring Snow and simply Fab Conditions

March 20, 2017

After the crazy weather and lots of snow during the first week of March the sun came out. And, we were able to ski beautifully groomed pistes under deep azure, blue skies. Now the school holidays were over we were also able to find many uncrowded runs and in Switzerland some perfect Spring Snow on their more south facing, off piste slopes. Given the sun had come out the obligatory PDS tour was undertaken on at least, two occasions. This also meant a visit to the fab Café des Sports in Morgins (twice), where we were able to sit outside in their courtyard and just watch the world pass by for an hour or so.

Old friends Alison and Cath came for their annual trip and they were joined by another regular Louise and new guests Al & Anna who managed to escape their 2 young children for a long weekend. The larger than life Ian Douglas and his good friends (Neil & Simon) also arrived at the chalet for the first time. They were a touch disappointed that England didn’t manage to do the Grand Slam double, but loved the skiing!!

Here’s a selection of the pics:








Snow, rain, snow, hail, Thunder & Lightning and lots more snow!!

March 8, 2017

Early March has seen some curious weather with storms and snow settling in the village – yep, we had to get Lotty the Snowblower out which is really unusual for this time of the year.

It has been a touch disconcerting skiing through the trees with Thunder & Lightning reverberating all around. And, then you find a tree lying acoss the piste on the blue Lievre run in the Nyon sector!!

But, the good news snow conditions have been fab and we’ve had lots of guests who’ve been able to enjoy – My nephews the Cattigans and the new member of the Cattigan family Lizzie who was on skis for the first time, our regulars and great friends Nicki, Tim, Helen & Mark. Plus new guests – Johan & Dimitar, Ian Roberts and his group. Apart from the skiing (sorry Helen I really couldn’t avoid that Mogul field), many good lunches in our favourite mountain restaurants, a few drinks in Morzine’s various bars – William and Rita won the Trivial Pursuit Challenge whilst Dimitar seemed to be the Backgammon Champion!!

We even managed an excursion to St. Gervais and a journey on the Mont Blanc Tramway upto the Bionnassay Glacier – spectacular as it passes the skiing in Les Houches (Chamonix Valley) with stunning views and picturesque scenery. Thoroughly recommended!!

Here’s a few pics for you all to enjoy:





Beautiful sunshine over February Half Term

February 19, 2017

Half term saw new guests the Warrs and Fields arrive at the chalet. Father, Barry Field and his good friend Roy also joined them. A great week was had in fantastic sunshine. True it was a bit busy but the guys managed to get into a good restaurant most days for lunch. The Viking’s Terrace on the top of Pleney was tried for the first time – it was a pleasant surprise!!  And, the world famous Sherpa bar also saw some action as Joe, Father Barry and Roy enjoyed one or two Apres Ski beers (with the chalet host, of course!!). A lively and competitive game of Trivial Pursuit (on the Wii) was also enjoyed one evening – well done Joe & Ben for pipping the girls team (Joe & Louise) to the title, as the chalet hosts late challenge petered out!!

Jo Warr celebrated her birthday and was given a surprise visit to the Skiddoos in Praz de Lys (on the way upto Les Gets from Taninges). Much revving of engines over the snowy pistes and routes through the trees was enjoyed. Rita cooked a wonderful Beef Wellington with Dauphinois potatoes and made a fab birthday cake. While the boys – Alexander, William and James all made huge progress on their skis and passed their ski school tests.

Here’s a few pics:



February brings lots of snow!!

February 7, 2017

New guests Ken Hughes and his boys mingled with old friends Kath & John Sherry (who kindly brought their son Stephen with them), and Susan & Matt Hancock returning for a second year. There is no doubt Ken and his boys could drink a bit but they could also ski a bit too!! We did the tour of the PDS and although we only made the connecting Rochassons lift out of Plain Dranse by 5 mins (late afternoon) – some, who I thought must be pretty tired were seen singing along to the Dixie Micks at Morzine’s famous Dixie Bar early that evening.  Dinner was a bit raucous that night with some singing of  famous Rock Anthems such as ‘Highway to Hell’ and ‘Don’t fear the Reaper’ but everyone seemed to get on pretty well despite one or two being a bit louder than others! The Hughes Boys definitely had lots of stamina – Encouraged by larger than life Andy they felt they needed to visit the Cavern for a final time after dinner. First guests we’ve ever had who partied hard both before and after dinner (plus a bit during, too) every night! Good on yer Boys!!

The following weekend saw the return of the Lawless Boys (who brought old friend Bob and new friend Phil with them this time). Dear friends Chef (Ian) & Fliss also arrived to watch England beat France in the opening w/e of the 6 Nations (which we watched at a vibrant local Petite Auberge), but also bring lots of much needed snow with them. This curtailed our normal adventures so no visit to the renowned Café des Sports in Morgins was possible (there’s always another chance when they return in March!). But, everyone did get to see the host struggle to put his snow chains on, on the way upto Ardent!! Worth the entrance fee, at least, first time they’d ever been used in anger – unbelievable I know!

A very relaxed, mellow atmosphere developed every evening with the help of some well known additional visitors which we hadn’t seen for a while – one Irish, one Scottish and an American imposter (all Whiskies!!). This meant vinyl was played, a table football contest developed and Dave (Carr) did some excellent recital of his well written poems (incl. the famous ‘Drinking to Excess’). The Chef also finally got revenge against Alex (Tsar of Wales) at 100 pin bowling on the Wii – this brought much satisfaction and it seems no hard feelings from the Tsar. He did win the table football contest with Steve!!

Thankyou, to all for some excellent times and here are some of the photos:





The Portes du Soleil in all it’s glory!!

January 27, 2017

Great video created by one of our guests (Lionel Stride) which captures the magnificence of the PDS – it’s natural charm and beauty and how spectacular the mountains can be. We all had a fun, fab weekend and covered an amazing amount of territory – the views and weather in Switzerland in the mornings was just superb. First visit of the season to the Café des Sports in Morgins too, which is just like visiting a good old friend:))

Lionel, thankyou for giving my old skiing knees a good workout. We’d love to see Mel with you next year!!


The Snow was late but conditions are now FAB!!!

January 21, 2017

It has been a slow start to this season but our guests have still managed to enjoy themselves. Yes, the snow was late this year but now conditions are wonderful on non crowded slopes and under butiful, blue skies. More snow fell last w/e than I’ve seen in Morzine for a long time – alas, on the Saturday I was off to the airport:((- Some people claimed they were skiing in powder up to their necks!!

True, it has been a tad cold since but this has helped to preserve the snow that has now fallen and keep the pistes in pristine conditions. A few times this last week we have found some remnants of excellent powder in the off-piste too:)))- Obviously, you need to have a host who knows where he’s going and where the little secrets maybe, tee-hee.

Here are some views from the chalet, Bod and his demon boys (first to be given the red card for antics for a long time!! But, they knew some fun games to play), the irrepressible Lionel (so fit and followed us everywhere) and our regular off-piste twins Nikki and Tim (with Rita)…….





A blast from the past!!

April 10, 2016

A big thanks to Jonathan Callow (he of the red card fame – see video on last blog post!!) who kindly updated this video from a few years back – made it vertical, added some music, etc. Obviously, he felt a little guilty. He’s also promised a video of the morning we spent skiing with his son (Seb) last week – hope you all look forward to it.

We were in the ‘Back Country’ high above the Nyon bowl (in Morzine) on a little off piste route that I know, just after a large dump of fresh snow……..


A few end of season snippets!!

April 8, 2016

Had to put these few final things on to cap a great season for our personalised ski weekends. The video tells it’s own story!

Fab sunrise coming up over Lake Geneva – having just dropped off our Russian guests, our Russian guests (with the Tsar) who, well had a typically Russian few days – thankyou for the Beer, Wine, Genepi, Port, etc. & disposing of the remants of our Whisky, Gin, Pastis!! Yep, glad it was the end not the beginning of the season!

And, my new friend and top skier Jonathan Callow (well until he ski’d into me over concentrating on his GoPro – luckily no injuries!) and his son Seb also v good skier (good luck with your GCSE’s). Look at that snow in Chavannes, Les Gets for mid April.

Thanks again to all our guests – really hope you enjoy the blog.