The Alps: Flat out hedonism

The iconic winter Alpine resorts are starting to open for a season of sporting velocity and louche conviviality.

Aspen, Colorado, Sun Valley, Idaho, and Banff, Canada are all glamorous winter playgrounds that have played host to Hollywood stars, royalty and industrial barons. Other hideouts such as Deer Valley, Utah, and Baqueira Beret, Spain have since attracted the crème de la crème of society. But when it comes to chronicling the tales of the international jet set, it is the Alps and its myriad of star-studded resorts that eclipses any other mountain range.

Peering magnificently over the shimmering aquamarine lake in the Engadin Valley, the Badrutt’s Palace Hotel, which reopened this month is the original home of hedonistic snowy excess. The historic hotel in St. Moritz is famous for its fancy-dress parties, particularly at New Year’s Eve, where guests book a year in advance. In less bureaucratic days, the staff filled the swimming pool with sea lions and on another they shipped in a live elephant as a birthday gift.

The interwar period was an early highpoint for St. Moritz. It hosted the Winter Olympics in 1928, whilst the launch of the Corviglia Ski Club with its wicked membership policy united only the most fashionable crowd. Together with the town’s fabled Cresta Run, it set St. Moritz on its way to becoming the most stylish home from home for the international jet setter.

Contributor

Freddie Anderson

Published

December 2021

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