If travel is not on your list of new year resolutions then it definitely should be! For me, there is nothing more invigorating and healthy than to travel – experiencing new cultures, new foods, new sensations and getting some valuable perspective on the world. Lorna and I have our favourite places, and we do go back to them, time and again – Val Thorens in the French Alps where we are at the moment, and beautiful Beaulieu sur Mer on the French Riviera where we keep our boat – but we also enjoy exploring places that surprise us and keep us on our toes. I am always on the look out for interesting trips to take – and as the owner of a luxury travel company I keep an eye firmly on travel trends and up-and-coming destinations. So, before you make your travel plans for 2016 take a look at my hot tips for the new year around the world …and then maybe change them!
December is here and the run-up to Christmas – and for us that usually signals our first ski trip of the season. We are off to Val Thorens next week, which is always a wonderful change of environment. It is a place that fills us both with delight; there’s such a fresh, healthy feel to it. Our apartment there is an exquisite place – it’s relatively small, compared to our house here, but we have spent years making it just how we want it to be – and that includes glass walls so we can wake up and look straight out at the mountains. For me, that is something that always lifts the spirits.
Winter is always welcome to me – mainly because it means I can indulge in skiing, one of my big sporting passions. I am a big believer that exercise keeps you young and strong. Age is no barrier to being physically active – in fact, I’d say that you can’t stop exercising when you’re older, just because perhaps you’re not as good at it as you once were, and expect to keep strong and fit. Keeping active keeps your body working at its best and keeps your mind sharp. When you accept that exercise brings a plethora of health benefits, such as increased bone density, reduced blood pressure, increased muscular strength and power, and improved balance, it seems obvious that we should make the time to move our bodies.
One of the great things about being in Val Thorens is that it gives me plenty of time to sit back and relax. Sure, the skiing is fantastic, but it’s also nice to just be able to spend an afternoon relaxing in our new apartment with a good book. I think there is no nicer way to spend time than reading a novel. And after a long day on the slopes, it’s a great way to recuperate.
Val Thorens is really an alpine resort for people who love food. The skiing is fantastic, the scenery is remarkable and the atmosphere is extremely friendly, but it’s the restaurants that really make it stand out from other resorts in the French Alps.
With about 60 restaurants across the Three Valleys, there’s plenty of variation, but Lorna and I have a particular taste for French cuisine (which there’s plenty of), so we tend to stick to that a lot. We’re in France after all!
Since our apartment in Val Thorens was finished late last year, we’ve been spending a lot of time here just enjoying it. So, we’ve also had time to dine out at a lot of different restaurants of late. If you’re interested, I’ve come up with my top five places to eat in Val Thorens. Next time you’re there, book a table at one of these! Continue reading
It’s still true – Lorna is a much better skier than I am. After days of chasing her down the slopes in Val Thorens though I think I’ve improved a lot. I’m still not as graceful as she is, but I manage to get to the bottom of the slopes in one piece, without having fallen over or got in anybody’s way. Continue reading