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France

Ste-Foy-Tarentaise

At an altitude of 1550m and located straddling the road up from Bourg St Maurice in the Tarentaise Valley, the tasteful, attractive and unpretentious resort of Sainte Foy built in the last few years, has been designed to recreate a typical alpine village. The chalets and apartment buildings nestling amongst the trees in their southwest-facing bowl have all been built in traditional style, with pitched roofs and wooden balconies, using local stone and wood, without the use of mass concrete found in some of the larger alpine resorts.

More of the big operators are now showing an interest in St Foy making this a great possible investment opportunity. For now though the resort remains remarkably unspoilt and has preserved its authentic charm and local architecture.

The perfect village for families, beginners and experts alike with skiing to 2620m on an excellent high grade mix of tree lined and open slopes, the 32km of piste, serviced by 7 lifts has a huge range of skiing experiences from back country, through Alpine forests to large open motorway and free-riding runs. It's small, relatively quiet nature, provides safe, uncrowded and pristine slopes for beginners and untouched slopes with powder for advanced and expert skiers alike. The heated indoor swimming pool with jet stream, stream room, refreshing showers, special massage shower, fitness room, indoor Jacuzzi, massages and beauty treatments offer something different if you don't want to ski.

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One of the best kept secret in the Alps, Ste Foy is absolutely perfectly positioned as a base to also visit some of the mega resorts nearby. On the same lift pass, Val d’Isere is only 12km away providing the gateway to the superb 150km Espace Killy ski domain that also includes Tignes, while the massive Les Arcs/La Plagne Paradiski, 425km ski domain can also be reached within a short 30 minute drive. With Ste Foy close to the Italian border, the French/Italian ski domain of La Rosiere/La Thuile with its 150km of skiable piste is also just 30 minutes by car.

In the summer, Sainte Foy is an ideal base for hiking, having more than 70kms of footpaths. Many of these pass through traditional alpine villages and towards tranquil mountain lakes while crossing back and forth into Italy along the 25km of shared border. Being close to the Vanoise National Park, the area offers some exceptional walks for all levels and outstanding views of Mont Blanc.

A network of natural trails offers superb mountain bike descents and long cross-country routes in one of the most wild and unspoilt parts of the region. The routes allow vertical drops of more than 1,000m on trails running through alpine meadows and forests as well as passing through hidden, unspoilt mountain villages with the stunning panorama of the glaciers filling your view. Rafting, white water swimming, canot-raft, canyoning and fishing make up some of the other activities on offer.

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For those wishing to fly, to get to Sainte Foy there is a good choice of flights from the UK regional and International airports to Geneva (2h15 - 218Km airport to resort), Chambery (1h15 - 115Km airport to resort), Lyon (2h20 - 215 Km airport to resort) or Grenoble (1h30 - 144Km airport to resort). By train couldn’t be easier thanks to the TGV Eurostar terminal at Bourg St Maurice which runs a direct service from London on a Friday night and Saturday. Alternatively take the Eurostar service to Paris or Lille and change to regular SNCF services to Bourg-Saint-Maurice (www.sncf.com). Taxi and bus shuttles run up to the resort. For those wishing to drive, Paris to Ste Foy is 6h30 - 647Km.

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