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France ski hotel review: Contained in the breathtaking Aman Le Melezin in Courchevel 1850

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Sometimes, the celebrities align.

And so it’s with hotel Aman Le Melezin within the uber-swish French ski resort of Courchevel 1850, a property that is a bewitching cross between a big luxury chalet and a Japanese temple, where the hospitality is divine, our bedroom heavenly and the placement worthy of committing to scripture.

It sits in surely one of the coveted spots in world skiing – right next to 1850’s tree-lined Bellecote run that descends into the centre of the resort, just 200 metres away.

Ted Thornhill checks in to Aman Le Melezin (above) within the uber-swish French ski resort of Courchevel 1850

Aman Le Melezin sits in surely one of the most coveted spots in world skiing – right next to Courchevel 1850's tree-lined Bellecote run

Aman Le Melezin sits in surely one of the coveted spots in world skiing – right next to Courchevel 1850’s tree-lined Bellecote run

Our corner suite has a panoramic view of this scene from the piece de resistance – an oversized banquette-cum-bed at one end of the room adjoining the main bedroom that is flush on two sides with several huge windows.

I say banquette. It would actually be a breeding centre for cushions – it’s covered in them.

We recline amid them clutching ‘welcome’ glasses of Veuve Clicquot – a bottle of which had been placed within the room in an ice bucket crammed with ice and actual snow – and gaze out on the snow-laden fairytale scene before us.

The hotel's 'wonderful' subterranean temple-style pool, which features two huge integrated hot tubs and a shallow-water section that's 'perfect for toddlers'

The hotel’s ‘wonderful’ subterranean temple-style pool, which features two huge integrated hot tubs and a shallow-water section that is ‘perfect for toddlers’

The piece de resistance in Ted's corner suite is an oversized banquette-cum-bed (above) at one end of the room adjoining the master bedroom that's flush on two sides with several huge windows

The piece de resistance in Ted’s corner suite is an oversized banquette-cum-bed (above) at one end of the room adjoining the main bedroom that is flush on two sides with several huge windows

This image shows Ted's master bedroom. He says: 'Our room is straightened out into a tranquil haven every night by the turn-down team, who even tidy my earphones into a little metal tin by the bed'

This image shows Ted’s main bedroom. He says: ‘Our room is straightened out right into a tranquil haven every night by the turn-down team, who even tidy my earphones into somewhat metal tin by the bed’

Ted's daughter enjoys the view from the sea of cushions on the bedroom banquette Each guest is served pastries, yoghurt and a juice on a cute rectangular tray for breakfast each morning

LEFT: Ted’s daughter enjoys the view from the ocean of cushions on the bedroom banquette. RIGHT: Each guest is served pastries, yoghurt and a juice on a cute rectangular tray for breakfast each morning

The larch trees throughout are caked in snow, bubble lifts are gliding up into the mountainside and the lights of the resort are starting to twinkle within the gloaming.

What makes our cushion-themed vantage point extra thrilling is a sense of virtually floating out over the snow.

We have just arrived, yet I already know leaving goes to be a heartbreaking wrench.

The remaining of the room comprises a beautiful king-sized bed, separate rain shower and deep tub, twin sinks and a high-tech heated Japanese loo – and, like the remainder of the hotel, it’s smothered in beautifully luxurious wood, with the occasional imperfection for bonus cosy vibes.

Art? None. Aman keeps clutter within the bedroom to a minimum for a zen-like atmosphere.

There’s somewhat bonsai tree, though, and a large one within the serene reception area.

On one side of that is the 31-room hotel’s exceptional Nama restaurant, which at lunch and dinner distributes precisely executed Japanese dishes – the wagyu-beef mini burgers and the crispy sushi rice with salmon are particularly excellent – with signature cocktails available too.

The hotel's exceptional Nama restaurant, which at lunch and dinner 'distributes precisely executed Japanese dishes'. Ted regards the wagyu-beef mini burgers and the crispy sushi rice with salmon as 'particularly excellent'

The hotel’s exceptional Nama restaurant, which at lunch and dinner ‘distributes precisely executed Japanese dishes’. Ted regards the wagyu-beef mini burgers and the crispy sushi rice with salmon as ‘particularly excellent’

How the other half do apres at the Aman - sommelier-selected wine in the oh-so-plush bar (above) is one option

How the opposite half do apres on the Aman – sommelier-selected wine within the oh-so-plush bar (above) is one option

This is Aman Le Melezin's swanky piste-side 'boot room', where 'two ridiculously efficient staff members' set Ted up with a snowboard and his partner and daughter with skis

That is Aman Le Melezin’s swanky piste-side ‘boot room’, where ‘two ridiculously efficient staff members’ set Ted up with a snowboard and his partner and daughter with skis

Ted writes: 'The hospitality is divine, our bedroom heavenly and the location worthy of committing to scripture'

Ted writes: ‘The hospitality is divine, our bedroom heavenly and the placement worthy of committing to scripture’

Aman Le Melezin's children's kingdom

Aman Le Melezin’s kid’s kingdom

We get proceedings underway with a ‘Coupette Samurai’ – made with French Ciroc Vodka, apple juice and keenness fruit syrup, with a passion fruit floating on top – then allow the hotel’s top sommelier to guide us to glasses of the 16-euro (£13) Savoie Chignin Bergeron by Domaine Magnin. Made with Roussanne grapes, it is a smashing fresh and fruity number.

We return to Nama each morning, where breakfast is beautifully presented. Each guest is served pastries, yoghurt and a juice on a cute rectangular tray as a matter after all, with the items rotated each day, and given a selection of a la carte dishes.

Post-breakfast on day one, we descend to the hotel’s swanky piste-side boot room and ski shop, where two ridiculously efficient staff members set me up with a snowboard and my partner and daughter with skis.

Our each day routine is then to ride with the infant within the hotel’s luxury VW shuttle van to Courchevel 1850’s impossibly cute Club Piou Piou ski school, which is fashioned after a medieval castle.

While she’s learning to ski on the dinky infant slopes, we hit Courchevel’s just-challenging-enough pistes for a few hours as clouds drape themselves around the world’s eye-catching crags.

Within the afternoon, it’s back to the hotel for lunch and to drop munchkin off on the hotel’s amazing little kid’s kingdom next to the ski room.

There an amiable skilled nanny watches over little ones as they’ve their photos taken in a photobooth, fill their hands with sweets from rows of dispensers, play Mario Kart on arcade machines and sit on beanbags in somewhat cinema room to observe animations.

In this spellbinding photo Aman Le Melezin can be seen poking through the trees on the Bellecote run

On this spellbinding photo Aman Le Melezin might be seen poking through the trees on the Bellecote run

The view from the hotel to the centre of Courchevel 1850, one of Europe's most glamorous resorts

The view from the hotel to the centre of Courchevel 1850, one among Europe’s most glamorous resorts

Ted says that he knew as soon as he arrived at the hotel that leaving would be a heartbreaking wrench

Ted says that he knew as soon as he arrived on the hotel that leaving could be a heartbreaking wrench

Ted describes Aman Le Melezin as a property that's a cross between a large luxury chalet and a Japanese temple

Ted describes Aman Le Melezin as a property that is a cross between a big luxury chalet and a Japanese temple

Aman Le Melezin - 'it's how the other half ski', says Ted

Aman Le Melezin – ‘it’s how the opposite half ski’, says Ted

Bliss for young and old, since it means we are able to hit the slopes again, worry-free.

Firstly of each mountain session our kit is placed on the slope, and put away for us afterwards, when the staff help prise our boots off and enthusiastically offer shots of their friend’s homemade genepy liqueur.

That is how the opposite half ski.

And the way the opposite half do apres on the Aman is more sommelier-selected wine within the oh-so-plush bar – during our stay within the presence of a widely known British comedian – and a dip within the hotel’s seductive subterranean temple-style pool, which features two huge integrated hot tubs and a shallow-water section that is perfect for toddlers.

Our room is straightened out right into a tranquil haven every night by the turn-down team, who even tidy my earphones into somewhat metal tin by the bed.

It’s Le Melezin in a microcosm – a stellar property where perfect harmony is the secret. 

TRAVEL FACTS 

Ted and his family are hosted by Aman Le Melezin. Rates start at £2,064 per night including taxes and costs, and each day breakfast.

PROS: Stunning location, beautiful decor, tranquil atmosphere, seductive pool, classy Japanese dining, on-point service, first-class ski and snowboard service, fun kid’s room.

CONS: None, except that it is a paradise just for those with very deep pockets. 

Rating out of 5: ***** 

Information and costs correct at time of writing. 

Eurostar

Visit Eurostar.com for information on its high-speed services between London St Pancras and Paris Gare du Nord.

Blacklane

Ted uses the superb Blacklane chauffeur service to move him to and from the Eurostar terminal at London St Pancras and between Paris Gare du Nord and Gare de Lyon, where he catches a TGV to Moutiers, the closest station to Courchevel. Blacklane has a brilliantly user-friendly booking system and operates in greater than 200 cities around the globe. Visit www.blacklane.com/en.

Courchevel 

For more on Courchevel, visit courchevel.com/en.

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