Welcome to the French Alps !

High up in the French Alps, it’s exciting to imagine the forces that shaped these colossal peaks. The African and Eurasian tectonic plates collided some 35 million years ago, forcing the land skyward into a 1000km chain of saw-edged mountains.

Spanning across seven European countries, the Alps reach their maximum height in France, at Mont Blanc (4810m). Routes into the Alps’ otherworldly realms are many: aboard cable cars that fly to scary heights, or in the company of mountain guides who bring you out into the wilderness. Europe’s biggest, and arguably most prestigious, ski resorts are here, melting into flower-filled hiking country each summer. Winter or summer, this amazing terrain commands respect: the French Alps’ mirror lakes, ice-cold rivers and majestic glaciers form one of Europe’s true epics.

Highlights in the French Alps

In Chamonix, skiers and sightseers are launched by cable cars to heights of 3842m on the Mont Blanc massif, while the glacial void of the Vallée Blanche is for the brave. Skiers and boarders have a choice of pistes along the valley, while in summer the lifts access hiking and biking trails. The town hosted the first ever Winter Olympics in 1924. Downtown Chamonix hums with life, streets are lined with Michelin-starred restaurants, sports gear stores and some of the French Alps’ fanciest hotels. And the night life is fantastic too. For great food, let’s head to the “Cap Horn” Restaurant, with its large and sophisticated main room that extends outside on a pleasant terrace with a spectacular Mont Blanc view. This place is suitable for all events, for groups up to 200 people. You will enjoy the various atmospheres the Cap Horn has to offer while savoring the chef’s cuisine based on top-quality local ingredients. This classic Chamonix eatery with its cosy vibe and great food comes highly recommended by our team.

Les Trois Vallées is the big one you’ve all heard about: vast, fast and by most measures, the largest ski area in the world. It’s impossible to get tired of all this terrain: there are more than 600km of pistes and more than 180 lifts linking eight resorts and three valleys. Among these are Val Thorens,, Europe’s highest ski village at 2300m, wealthy Méribel, and playground of the super-rich Courchevel. In Méribel, the 5-star “Kaila” hotel is sure to please the pickiest customers. Centrally located, just a footstep from the ski lifts, its rooms and suites are decorated with a luxurious and highly contemporary style, with a warm and comfy touch. Opened in December 2012, it boasts a 200sqm indoor swimming pool and a unique spa, which will guarantee ultimate relaxation. Last but not least, the restaurant l’Ekrin, decorated in black velvet, with gold and wooden tones, has earned one Michelin star. Chef Laurent Azoulay will delight you with original, daring and delicate dishes, with access to an exceptional wine selection.

In between Les Ménuires and Val Thorens, “Chez Pépé Nicolas” is an authentic alpine chalet and above all a very atypical restaurant. This conceptual place with a quirky look, described as “tradi trendy chic” by connoisseurs, has a fabulous team that will do everything to provide you a totally exceptional experience. On the menu, you get local specialties like raclette, tartiflette, croziflette, fondue, Beaufort cheese, etc. But also delicious grilled meats, and funky desserts that will make you beg for more. Once you’ve taken in all the great atmosphere, food, and drinks, just hop on the restaurant shuttle, or make a torchlight descent back to your hotel!

Whatever you wish for your perfect stay in the French Alps, and whatever your budget, you can be sure that Vitalis will build a tailor-made experience that you will remember for many years to come! Please stay tuned for our next article about all the best group activities this region has to offer.

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Switzerland : top suggestions for your next event or break

On top of being one of the leading event management agencies in Switzerland, Vitalis Events is also one of the foremost DMC services providers in the country. As one of the most secure destinations in the world, especially in these uncertain times, Switzerland has a world of possibilities to offer you for your next meeting, corporate event, incentive, or team-building. Great cities, each with their own personality and charm, breath-taking mountains, lakes, and nature, always in pristine condition, for that special company event, or pure relaxation. You simply will not be disappointed if you choose Switzerland, and Vitalis Events as your DMC to organize every little detail of your stay. We offer fantastic venues with state-of-the-art facilities, delicious dining, and exclusive activities.

Switzerland is a great place to enjoy glamping, an innovative concept mixing the words glamour and camping. It combines the luxury and comfort of the nicest accommodation with the freedom of camping and open-air. It’s that break from the hustle and bustle of daily activity. It’s a time for you to get away from it all in a treehouse for example, with only the wind blowing in the branches. Glamping is also the opportunity to merge with nature and feel that it replenishes you.

Alternatively, a wide selection of beautiful mountain hotels with fantastic service, 3 to 5 stars, will make sure that you get the most out of your company retreat, your meeting, or a truly relaxing break. There is something for every taste, from ultra-authentic old chalet hotels right on the slopes, to lovely boutique hotels, and sophisticated, high-tech hotels with all the latest innovations. If you feel more like enjoying one of Switzerland’s amazing lakes, it might be a good idea to check in at the Palafitte Hotel near Neuchâtel for example. The only hotel built on stilts, the Palafitte enjoys an exceptional location, by Lake Neuchâtel, the largest entirely Swiss lake. Like the lake from which it draws its inspiration, the Palafitte follows the rhythm of nature, season after season. Open to the outdoors in summer, the hotel becomes warmer and warmer when temperatures drop. The modern design architecture has been thought out so as to offer, wherever you are, an opening to the breathtaking exterior view.

Switzerland offers a great variety of dining experiences, whether it’s hip restaurants with panoramic views, gourmet restaurants on the slopes or unusual places like Turbina in Zermatt for example. “Turbina” is a unique place, which belongs to the history of the world-famous Zermatt resort, at the foot of the Matterhorn. The disused hydroelectric power station, built in 1898 to supply the Gornergrat railway with electricity until the late 1970s, was brought back to life after a slight renovation in 2014 and now serves as an event room. It is an incomparable “energetic place”, with an original industrial design and a long history, which now covers events of all kinds (gastronomic dinners with celebrity hosts, corporate events, birthdays, team meetings, parties, prize-giving during sporting events, big aperitifs,…). And while in Zermatt, why not try out some fancy local specialties like the Sinalco? A mix of unknown and kept secret schnapps, this “undrinkable” beverage is served in an old Sinalco bottle, a classic Swiss soda, hence the name!

As you might expect, the Swiss mountains will spoil you with quite unusual outdoor activities too: heliskiing, paragliding, fatbike, electric mountain bikes, bobsleigh, golf on snow in Gstaad, to name just a few…

To make your event or your stay that little bit more special, a select range of Swiss speakers is sure to delight you. A famous ski lift company executive could take you through innovation management, key technological achievements, or challenges linked to permafrost. Another amazing speaker is Heinz Julen, a well-known innovator, artist and architect. There are of course many other speakers to fit your tastes and your agenda. And why not book a day of skiing with such Swiss legends as Pirmin Zurbriggen (a true olympic and world cup legend), William Besse, or Didier Defago, for a really unforgettable day!

Whichever amazing destination you choose in Switzerland, Vitalis Events is your gateway to a perfectly organized stay, with guaranteed fun and memories along the way. Let us know your every desire, small or large, and we’ll make it happen!

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