Best Ski Resorts in Europe and North America

by Meg Massie 
Posted Dec 15th 2010 09:30 AMUpdated Feb 17th 2011 06:56 PM

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best luxury ski resorts

For some, skiing is a one- or two-day event with few frills but many thrills. For others, nothing short of the world's best ski resorts will do for an amazing winter ski vacation. If you want to experience some of the best skiing, dining, and relaxing, - and money is no object - then consider one of the following top luxury ski resorts for your next ski holiday.

Best Luxury Ski Resorts in Europe

Some of the best ski resorts in Europe are located in the Swiss Alps. But when it comes to true luxury and impeccable quality, St. Moritz immediately jumps to mind. Nestled only a couple of kilometers from the 4,049 meter Piz Bernina mountain peak, this luxury ski resort features not only a rich history of winter sports but also numerous amenities. Check into the world famous Badrutt's Palace Hotel, skate on the nearby lake, or ski to your heart's content. Whatever you decide to do, it will definitely be in the lap of luxury.

If Switzerland doesn't excite you, then perhaps a luxury ski holiday at France's Courchevel (and Courchevel 1850) resort will. Located in the French Alps, Courchevel arguably sports some of the most difficult black diamond runs in Europe. But it's not only the excellent ski runs of all difficulties that bring out winter sports fanatics. One of the most luxurious ski hotels in the world - in the form of Hotel De Charme Les Airelles - and numerous luxury amenities like a cinema and fitness center exist at the resort. There's even a small airport that serves jet setters of all sorts. Whether you're going for the quality skiing or to relax on a winter ski vacation, Courchevel will have you doing it in style.

Best Luxury Ski Resorts in North America

Out of the top ski destinations in the United States, Park City, Utah's Deer Valley Resort consistently stands out as being one of the best ski resorts. The resort remains competitive with other nearby resorts precisely because it's tailored to a more upscale audience. Ski valets, spa facilities, and a licensed child facility are all available to guests at the resort. But don't let all the luxury overshadow the fact that some of the best exclusive skiing can be found at Deer Valley. Some of the runs were even used during the 2002 Olympic Winter Games.

A little north of the border in British Columbia, Canada, the luxury and allure of Whistler beckons and calls skiers around the world. At Whistler, everything is a little larger than life. It boasts the largest skiable area in North America, hosts North America's longest intermediate run, and features the world's highest and largest unsupported cable car run. But the skiing isn't all that's grandiose at Whistler. Relaxing spas, world-class restaurants, and diverse shopping opportunities await those who want to take a break away from the ski slopes. Renowned hotels like the Four Seasons Resort are always packed during the winter season. The honor of hosting the 2010 Winter Olympics helps to boost the reputation of Whistler even more. All of this combines to make Whistler one of the best destinations for luxury ski vacations.

Photo by Christopher Heschong from Flickr

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