Style

A Ski
Vacation in
Europe

(and
What to Pack)

Picking a favorite ski resort is like picking a favorite child: It’s impossible. In recent years, more and more of the action takes place off the slopes—and when those slopes are in Switzerland, Austria, and France, the hotels are as world-class as the skiing. Hotels and chalets are souping up their digs with next-level spas and restaurants, and the shopping is (finally) moving beyond puffers and cashmere socks. Sure, fresh powder and long runs are crucial to the ski experience—and on that front, Europe delivers. But before committing to predawn chairlifts and full-day passes, remember this: A weekend in one of the gorgeously opulent properties that dot the Alps is more about late-night revelry than early morning runs.

Gstaad, Switzerland

Gstaad, Switzerland

  1. Imagine Narnia as a luxury ski town and you begin to get an idea of Gstaad, an Alpine town that is more fairy-tale than the fairy tale. And the turreted Gstaad Palace Hotel towering over the town is the epicenter of the action. Despite the fact that the Palace is the kind of spot where velvet dinner jackets and diamonds are the norm, it has a comforting familial vibe (no, really). Staffers greet you by name, kids are encouraged to stay up late, and most nights end with guests singing around the piano in the lobby bar after too many Vesper martinis. Rooms are generously sized, but the suites are enormous (with walk-in closets as big as many New York City apartments). And then there’s the spa, a botanical-scented grotto where nothing can go wrong. Relaxation happens wrapped in robes on cushy sofas around a wood-burning stove, and our deep-tissue massage was the most vigorous-in-a-good-way we’ve ever had. Not surprisingly, Gstaad is bursting with good restaurants. For a break from the old-world formality that pervades the town, La Fromagerie serves up classic Swiss mountain fare (cheese fondue, hunks of bread, and boiled potatoes for dipping) on red-checkered tablecloths. For frothy cappuccinos, hot chocolate, and prime people-watching, Charly’s at the edge of the village is tough to beat. And the selection of virtuous green smoothies helps start every day on an optimistically invigorated note.

  2. WHAT TO WEAR

  1. Imagine Narnia as a luxury ski town and you begin to get an idea of Gstaad, an Alpine town that is more fairy-tale than the fairy tale. And the turreted Gstaad Palace Hotel towering over the town is the epicenter of the action. Despite the fact that the Palace is the kind of spot where velvet dinner jackets and diamonds are the norm, it has a comforting familial vibe (no, really). Staffers greet you by name, kids are encouraged to stay up late, and most nights end with guests singing around the piano in the lobby bar after too many Vesper martinis. Rooms are generously sized, but the suites are enormous (with walk-in closets as big as many New York City apartments). And then there’s the spa, a botanical-scented grotto where nothing can go wrong. Relaxation happens wrapped in robes on cushy sofas around a wood-burning stove, and our deep-tissue massage was the most vigorous-in-a-good-way we’ve ever had. Not surprisingly, Gstaad is bursting with good restaurants. For a break from the old-world formality that pervades the town, La Fromagerie serves up classic Swiss mountain fare (cheese fondue, hunks of bread, and boiled potatoes for dipping) on red-checkered tablecloths. For frothy cappuccinos, hot chocolate, and prime people-watching, Charly’s at the edge of the village is tough to beat. And the selection of virtuous green smoothies helps start every day on an optimistically invigorated note.

  2. WHAT TO WEAR

  1. goop x Perfect Moment beanie goop x Perfect Moment beanie
    goop x Perfect Moment
    Beanie
    goop, $90
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  2. Van Cleef and Arpels Ring Van Cleef and Arpels Ring
    Van Cleef & Arpels
    Perlée Clovers
    Bracelet, Medium Model

    Van Cleef & Arpels, $26,100
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    In partnership with our friends at Van Cleef & Arpels

  3. La Bouche Rouge Lipstick La Bouche Rouge Lipstick
    La Bouche Rouge
    Lipstick
    goop, $164
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  4. BP Snood BP Snood
    BP.
    Snood
    Nordstrom, $25
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  5. Tibi Dress Tibi Dress
    Tibi
    Dress
    goop, $950
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  6. RAEY COAT RAEY COAT
    RAEY
    COAT
    Matchesfashion, $1,041
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  7. Carolina Amato mittens Carolina Amato mittens
    Carolina Amato
    mittens
    Saks Fifth Avenue, $75
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  8. What Goes Around Comes Around Hermès birkin Bag What Goes Around Comes Around Hermès birkin Bag
    What Goes Around Comes Around
    Hermès birkin Bag
    goop, $18,500
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  9. J. Crew Boot J. Crew Boot
    J.Crew
    Boots
    Zappos, $228
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Chamonix, France

Chamonix, France

  1. Mont Blanc, at a whopping 15,780 feet, is the tallest peak in Western Europe. Storybook Chamonix sits in the mountain’s shadow and, every December, swells with an experienced ski crowd eager to swoosh down the Pointe de Vue black run. The only problem with staying at chalet Ferme de Bois is you might not make it to the slopes at all. The five-bedroom stone-and-wood lodge is a study in luxe comfort. Shaggy throws, leather armchairs, and design books fill the cavernous living room, which has a showstopping fireplace as its centerpiece. The elevated terrace is perfect for stargazing at night and coffee (wrapped in blankets) in the mornings. When the blizzards roll in, the projector room and extensive movie library keep the kids (and adults) occupied. For a hotel option, family-owned Hameau Albert 1er excels at careful attention to detail with a Michelin-starred restaurant and a petite spa (the Ayurveda-based abhyanga oil treatments are next-level). For dinner, Le Monchu serves up classic Savoyard fare (cheese-covered everything) in a casual, bustling setting. Locals know to go there for the charcoal-grilled beef and baked potatoes.

  2. WHAT TO WEAR

  1. Mont Blanc, at a whopping 15,780 feet, is the tallest peak in Western Europe. Storybook Chamonix sits in the mountain’s shadow and, every December, swells with an experienced ski crowd eager to swoosh down the Pointe de Vue black run. The only problem with staying at chalet Ferme de Bois is you might not make it to the slopes at all. The five-bedroom stone-and-wood lodge is a study in luxe comfort. Shaggy throws, leather armchairs, and design books fill the cavernous living room, which has a showstopping fireplace as its centerpiece. The elevated terrace is perfect for stargazing at night and coffee (wrapped in blankets) in the mornings. When the blizzards roll in, the projector room and extensive movie library keep the kids (and adults) occupied. For a hotel option, family-owned Hameau Albert 1er excels at careful attention to detail with a Michelin-starred restaurant and a petite spa (the Ayurveda-based abhyanga oil treatments are next-level). For dinner, Le Monchu serves up classic Savoyard fare (cheese-covered everything) in a casual, bustling setting. Locals know to go there for the charcoal-grilled beef and baked potatoes.

  2. WHAT TO WEAR

  1. goop x Electric sunglasses goop x Electric sunglasses
    goop x Electric
    sunglasses
    goop, $225
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  2. Van Cleef and Arpels Perlée Diamond Earrings Van Cleef and Arpels Perlée Diamond Earrings
    Van Cleef & Arpels
    Perlée Diamond Earrings
    Van Cleef & Arpels, $12,000
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    In partnership with our friends at Van Cleef & Arpels

  3. May Lindstrom Blue Cocoon May Lindstrom  Blue Cocoon
    May Lindstrom
    The Blue Cocoon
    goop, $180
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  4. Kule Scarf Kule Scarf
    Kule
    Scarf
    Kule, $198
    SHOP NOW
  5. G. Label kelvin maxi coat G. Label kelvin maxi coat
    G. Label
    kelvin maxi coat
    goop, $1,295
    SHOP NOW
  6. Khaite sweater Khaite sweater
    Khaite
    sweater
    goop, $1,380
    SHOP NOW
  7. Khaite Jeans Khaite Jeans
    Khaite
    Jeans
    goop, $340
    SHOP NOW
  8. Tod's Bag Tod's Bag
    Tod’s
    Bag
    goop, $1,995
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  9. Church's Boots Church's Boots
    Church’s
    Boots
    Farfetch, $535
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St. Anton am
Arlberg, Austria

St. Anton am Arlberg, Austria

  1. Caveat: St. Anton am Arlberg is geared toward serious skiers. Topographically, the slopes in the Arlberg region are steep and tough, and they draw a loyal crowd of skilled, experienced skiers. A ton of investment in Arlberg has led to over ninety ski lifts, creating a massive ski zone that connects to other resorts, like Lech and Zurs. If you’re still up for it, the place to stay is the boutique hotel Himmlhof, which exudes all the Alpine charm you can possibly handle. The renovated farmhouse has a fireplace in what feels like every corner and gorgeous tartan upholstering on the sofas. Plus—best for last—it’s a three-minute walk from the closest ski lift. A bigger but still boutique option is Tannenhof. The interiors are more contemporary, but there’s still plenty of wood and soft furnishings for that rustic-cabin feel. All seven suites are saturated in stark, white Alpine light thanks to floor-to-ceiling windows. And then there are the over-the-top flourishes—a Maserati or helicopter from the airport; a beautifully outfitted, functional spa with Susanne Kaufmann products; and an award-winning restaurant (that fills up fast). Villa Trier has been a chalet since 1912, but these days the property leads a double life as a museum and an obscenely romantic, candlelit restaurant come nightfall. Request a table in the library and order the stewed plums and cream for dessert.

  2. WHAT TO WEAR

  1. Caveat: St. Anton am Arlberg is geared toward serious skiers. Topographically, the slopes in the Arlberg region are steep and tough, and they draw a loyal crowd of skilled, experienced skiers. A ton of investment in Arlberg has led to over ninety ski lifts, creating a massive ski zone that connects to other resorts, like Lech and Zurs. If you’re still up for it, the place to stay is the boutique hotel Himmlhof, which exudes all the Alpine charm you can possibly handle. The renovated farmhouse has a fireplace in what feels like every corner and gorgeous tartan upholstering on the sofas. Plus—best for last—it’s a three-minute walk from the closest ski lift. A bigger but still boutique option is Tannenhof. The interiors are more contemporary, but there’s still plenty of wood and soft furnishings for that rustic-cabin feel. All seven suites are saturated in stark, white Alpine light thanks to floor-to-ceiling windows. And then there are the over-the-top flourishes—a Maserati or helicopter from the airport; a beautifully outfitted, functional spa with Susanne Kaufmann products; and an award-winning restaurant (that fills up fast). Villa Trier has been a chalet since 1912, but these days the property leads a double life as a museum and an obscenely romantic, candlelit restaurant come nightfall. Request a table in the library and order the stewed plums and cream for dessert.

  2. WHAT TO WEAR

  1. Three Graces London Top Three Graces London Top
    Three Graces London
    Top
    Matchesfashion, $488
    SHOP NOW
  2. Mother Jeans Mother Jeans
    MOTHER
    Jeans
    goop, $238
    SHOP NOW
  3. Van Cleef and Arpels Limited-edition Vintage Alhambra Pendant Van Cleef and Arpels Limited-edition Vintage Alhambra Pendant
    Van Cleef & Arpels
    Limited-edition Vintage
    Alhambra Pendant

    Van Cleef & Arpels, $3,550
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    In partnership with our friends at Van Cleef & Arpels

  4. Tata Harper Essence Tata Harper Essence
    Tata Harper
    Essence
    goop, $72
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  5. Bottega Veneta Gloves Bottega Veneta Gloves
    Bottega Veneta
    GLOVES
    Bottega Veneta, $590
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  6. Apparis Coat Apparis Coat
    Apparis
    Coat
    goop, $445
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  7. Tibi Cardigan Tibi Cardigan
    Tibi
    Cardigan
    goop, $495
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  8. Burberry Bag Burberry Bag
    Burberry
    BAG
    Matchesfashion, $2,183
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  9. Hermès Boots Hermès Boots
    Hermès
    BOOTS
    Hermès, $1,200
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