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Chalet Guide to Les Arcs

A guide to finding the perfect chalet in Les Arcs

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A chalet embodies the quintessential ski holiday. Who hasn’t dreamt of coming back to the perfect chocolate-box house after a day on the slopes? Even better if there's a plush sofa you can snuggle up on in front of a roaring fire or an outdoor hot tub to unwind in while surrounded by deep powder fields and high snow-capped peaks. That’s exactly what staying in a chalet is all about.

While Les Arcs is not generally known as a chalet resort, all of the villages that make up the area do offer chalet accommodation of some description. Whether it's traditional Savoyard-style converted farmhouses or contemporary Alpine abodes, they are the perfect home away from home on your winter holiday or your summer escape to the mountains.

This guide will help you choose the perfect chalet for your holiday. Let's dive right in.

Things to consider when booking a chalet in Les Arcs

The lounge area in the chalet

When planning your break away to a chalet in the mountains, here are a few things worth thinking about before you decide what to go for.

Book early
We recommend you book your chalet as soon as possible. Chalets usually sell out quite quickly and a lot of people book as early as January for the next winter season. Book your accommodation before buying your flights or train ticket, the reason being that availability may be limited and chalet start/end dates are not always as flexible as travel options.

As for the best time to stay in a chalet, they're usually open for bookings during the winter and summer high seasons – from December to April and from June to September. However, some chalet companies may offer their chalets up for interseason rentals, especially for large parties such as company retreats or events.

How long you want to stay
Most ski chalets in Les Arcs are rented on a weekly basis only. You’ll find that Saturday to Saturday rentals are most common, but increasingly with the times being as they are, dates can be flexible and some chalet companies may provide a mix of Saturday and Sunday changeovers.

Plus shorter and longer ski breaks are becoming more and more popular, so some chalet companies may be flexible on their rental dates on request. Summer chalet bookings in Les Arcs are generally much more flexible on dates and length of stay, especially outside the peak months of July and August. This means that you can come for a long weekend, for ten days or for a few days mid-week more easily. 

Size matters
Chalet holidays are suitable for all sorts of group sizes: couples looking for a romantic escapade, families, groups of friends and even large corporate retreats, as they usually have at least two bedrooms with some offering space for up to 15 people and more. Solo travellers and couples can opt for a room in a larger catered chalet while couples looking for independence can check out the charming one-bedroom converted mazots (small wooden huts traditionally used to store valuables and food) on offer in Les Arcs. However big or small your group is, you’ll need to know the exact number of people and the ages of the children coming with you on your holiday before booking.

Go shared or rent the whole thing
Many chalets in Les Arcs can either be booked by the room or as a whole property. Catered chalets are more often than not rented by the room, meaning that you share the chalet and its facilities with other guests, while self-catered chalets are rented out as a whole property, exclusively for your party. Booking rooms in a shared catered chalet is a great option for small families, groups of friends and couples. Some catered chalets can also be rented out on a whole property basis for larger groups, or even if you'd just prefer private use of the chalet without using the full occupancy. To learn more about whether to choose a catered or a self-catered chalet, read below.

Know your wants and needs
There are hundreds of chalets on offer in Les Arcs, some providing simple accommodation at the foot of the slopes and others boasting five-star luxury facilities. Most come with WiFi as standard, but check before you book if it's important, some have ski-to-door access and state-of-the-art boot warmers, some don't, and if you need a large terrace with breathtaking views, a cinema room, designer décor or a pet-friendly property, make sure you book as early as possible.

You'll also find that many high-end chalet companies offer concierge services who’ll take care of everything, from your ski passes to your lessons, your equipment hire, chauffeur services to take you to and from the slopes or drive you around resort, private chefs and spas with massages on demand. You're spoiled for choice in Les Arcs!

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Catered vs self-catered chalets in Les Arcs

The dining area in the chalet

When booking your chalet in Les Arcs, you’ll find that there are two main options: catered or self-catered. Essentially your meals are included in the price of your chalet rental or they're not.

Catered chalets in Les Arcs
Catered chalets include accommodation and meals under the same roof. Generally managed by one or more chalet hosts who take care of cooking, serving and cleaning, the chalets are usually half-board and include at least breakfast and dinner in the price of your accommodation. Usually rented by the room and priced per person, they suit small families and groups of friends, as well as couples and solo travellers who want an easy, effortless holiday with no cooking or washing up involved. Some chalets have triple or family (quad) rooms available and sometimes the chalet company may rent out a catered chalet as a whole property for large groups.

Pros: 

  • Catered chalets are the best option for those searching for a hassle-free holiday, as there’s nothing much you need to do other than enjoy your stay. 
  • You’ll wake up to the smell of freshly cooked breakfast, come back from skiing to homemade cake and tea, and sit down to a three or four-course dinner in the evenings.
  • Chalet hosts will also clean rooms and common areas.

Cons: 

  • The price per person of catered chalets is usually higher than that of self-catered chalets. However, you also get more bang for your buck since chalet hosts will cook your meals and clean after you.
  • You will be sharing your accommodation with other people you haven't met before.

Worth noting: Chalet staff usually have one, sometimes two, evenings off during the week. When this happens, you’ll get a continental, self-service breakfast left out for you by your host, as well as afternoon tea and cake. For dinner, you’ll get the chance to sample the local restaurants. Alternatively, some companies provide self-service dinner, carefully prepared and left out for you, often in the form of a traditional Savoyarde fondue or raclette.

Self-catered chalets in Les Arcs
Self-catered chalets include only the rental of the accommodation, so you need to take care of your own meals. They are ideal for those who want the chalet all to themselves, don’t mind/like cooking and ordering take away, and are happy cleaning up after themselves throughout their stay.

Pros: 

  • Self-catered chalets are rented out as a whole property, so you get the chalet all to yourself.
  • They are generally cheaper than catered chalets, which means that you'll have more cash to splash on Les Arcs's great selection of restaurants.
  • If you have children, fussy eaters or those with specific dietary requirements in your group, it can be easier to cater for them in the comfort of your own kitchen.

Cons: 

  • You'll need to sort out your meals and clean up after yourself. 

Worth noting: Many companies can arrange mid-stay cleans and linen/towel changes if booked in advance, and self-catering nowadays is much easier than ever thanks to the array of catering options available. Some chalet companies provide welcome packs or can arrange shopping deliveries and private chef services. And in the post-Covid world, food and drink delivery services are springing up in resorts making flexible self-catering much more of an option. Gone are the days when self-catering meant someone cooking every night of their holiday (however, someone definitely still has to load the dishwasher I'm afraid!)

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Luxury chalets in Les Arcs

Luxury is in the eye of the beholder. What someone may find opulent, someone else may deem simple. However, Les Arcs does have a great selection of chalets on the higher end of the spectrum.

What's included in a luxury chalet?
When we talk about luxury chalets in Les Arcs, we refer to chalets boasting five-star facilities: large ski rooms with boot warmers, cinema rooms, stunning central-piece fireplaces, playstations, large chef-style kitchens, spa rooms and, of course, floor to ceiling windows so that you can soak in the views from the warmth of your living room. Luxury chalets usually come with concierge services that'll take care of everything for you, from ski passes to lessons, equipment hire, airport transfers, shuttle service to the lifts, etc. A private chef or a 24hr chauffeur can usually also be added as options.

Where can you find luxury chalets in Les Arcs?
Arc 1950 is a good place to find ski chalets at the luxury end of the market as most of the accommodation here is modern and offers top-quality services and facilities. Another major plus of booking a chalet ski holiday in Arc 1950 is that most of the chalets are ski to the door, and there are plenty of bars and restaurants in the town itself if you can tear yourself away from the hot tub! 

While most of the accommodation in Arc 1950 is of the chalet-apartment style, more authentic luxury chalet accommodation can be found further down the valley in Plan Peisey, Vallandry and Peisey Nancroix where old farmhouses and traditional chalets have been developed and renovated. Chalet accommodation in these areas is ideal for those looking for a more tranquil ski holiday in Les Arcs.

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Group chalets in Les Arcs

The dining area in the chalet

If you’re looking to organise a group or corporate ski trip, Les Arcs is the perfect place to host it. A charming Alpine village with great nightlife and loads of choice when it comes to group accommodation, Les Arcs has lots going on and it’s situated in one of the biggest ski areas in the world.

What should you look out for when booking a chalet for a big group in Les Arcs?
There are lots of options for groups looking for chalet accommodation in Les Arcs, and a majority of it is chalet-apartment style. This kind of accommodation is great for large groups as there are normally facilities on site such as swimming pools, fitness rooms and saunas. Take a look at our guide to the different areas that make up Les Arcs and you will get a better idea of where to base your group for your corporate ski trip.

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Family chalets in Les Arcs

The games room in the chalet

Les Arcs is really well set up for mountain-loving families, with plenty of activities for all ages and a host of family-friendly chalets.

Where can you find family-friendly chalets in in Les Arcs?
Family ski holidays tend to have their own unique requirements, the most important of which is finding a large ski chalet preferably with a garden big enough to build snowmen! Numerous large ski chalets offer family-focused accommodation in Les Houches with services ranging from in-house nannies, playrooms, cinema rooms, underground swimming pools and hot tubs to childcareArc 1950 and Arc 1800 are the most family-friendly resorts as they have plenty of events and activities going on, as well as excellent access to the Paradiski ski area. While family-friendly catered accommodation is available here, it is more chalet-apartment style than traditional chalet so, if you’re looking for something a bit more authentic, head down the valley to the lower altitude villages of Plan Peisey, Vallandry and Peisey Nancroix.

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Budget chalets in Les Arcs

A double bedroom in the chalet

There are numerous budget chalet accommodation options in the various villages that make up Les Arcs.

How can you save money on your Les Arcs chalet?
Staying down the valley is cheaper but less convenient, while higher up the valley means you sacrifice a bit of soul in favour of ski area access. If you are looking for somewhere in between, as well as proximity to the liveliest nightlife in Les Arcs and some good skiing, then the best option is probably Arc 1800. If you can book a cheap chalet in the Charmettoger area of Arc 1800, you will be in the most attractive spot in town.

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Ski-in & ski-out chalets in Les Arcs

A view of the ski slopes in Les Arcs

The great thing about skiing in Les Arcs is that many of the chalets offer ski-in / ski-out accommodation or, at least, ski to the door.

Where can you find ski-in & ski-out chalets in Les Arcs?
To guarantee the ski-to-the-door experience, it would be wise to book a chalet as high up the valley as possible, in Arc 2000Arc 1950 or Arc 1800. Villages lower down the valley can sometimes struggle with snow cover in a lean winter season.

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More inspiration...

Our guide on Where to Stay in Les Arcs will help give you an indication of the character and feel of the different resorts. Les Arcs also has plenty of self-catered apartments available to rent, take a look at our Holiday Rentals page to see what's on offer and read our guide on the best self-catered ski apartments for more information.

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Where to Stay in Les Arcs