Armancette Hotel, which opened in July 2019, is nestled in the tranquil and authentic village of Saint-Nicolas-de-Véroce, about five miles from the stunning spa town of Saint-Gervais-les-Bains in Haute-Savoie. Overlooked by the majestic mountains, it’s at the base of the Evasion Mont Blanc ski area. And, it’s hard to think of anywhere that provides for a more soul-soothing and uplifting stay.
A hotel for all seasons
Though this 5-star hotel is perfect for the ski season, it’s also an idyllic spot for any time of the year. Take a wander in the charming little village. Hop on the ski lift just 100 metres from the hotel and be whisked up to the slopes for skiing (420km of piste and snow cannons). Enjoy hiking or mountain biking, farm visits, wine tasting and more. Pop to nearby Saint-Gervais les Bains to discover a genuine alpine market town with a bustling market place and centre. There are plenty of year-round shops, cafés and restaurants. Or simply relax and enjoy the hotel’s fabulous pool and spa.
The chalet-style hotel is brand new and built on the site of the former village bakery. The Parisian owner, who used to holiday in the area as a child, is passionate about the village and created a new bakery on the ground floor of the hotel. Locals love the seriously gorgeous bread and cakes made by the hotel’s in-house baker. It also has a little tea room which spills out onto the pavement with fabulous mountain views. See it for yourself on a virtual visit: www.armancette.com/360
Relax, re-energise, recharge
It’s impossible to feel frazzled when you’re staying at this hotel. It’s absolutely 5-star luxury, the attention to detail is evident, big marble bathrooms, gorgeous rugs, every room has a balcony, sound system and a Nespresso machine. Everything about the place is soothing. With the electric shutters down at night you feel cocooned. I had the best night’s sleep ever here. It’s friendly and intimate with just 17 rooms and suites, each is different and each is designed to make you feel cosseted, cherished and coddled.
The hotel boasts a large spa with an indoor/outdoor pool filled with deliciously warm water and two outdoor hot tubs from which you can contemplate the mighty mountains before you as you feel the stresses and strife of everyday life simply melt away. I’ve got to be honest, I didn’t want to leave, and I can’t wait to return. Using the facilities is included in the price of your stay including a hammam, sauna and gym. You can additionally book treatments with the expert spa staff (there are three treatment rooms).
Skiers will love the ski room that’s available with heated cabinets and shoe dryers (one for each room!) and there’s even a shuttle bus with a mountain drop off.
Even in the car park the care taken to create this hotel is clear – it’s also an underground gallery. Nothing like parking your car and ogling art at the same time.
The hotel restaurant La Table d’Armante has an open kitchen and a gastronomic menu designed by three-Michelin-Starred chef Antoine Westermann and specialises in local seasonal produce. Enjoy a drink in the bijou bar, lunch on the terrace – nothing gives you an appetite like mountain air, and dinner in the comfy restaurant. Snack at the gorgeous bakery. Florian the patisserie chef makes the most amazing chocolates for guests. Pierre in charge of the organic bread section is a genius (don’t miss the bread made with local beer from nearby Megève). And chef Julien Darcy delivers dishes that make you sigh with happiness.
A few minutes from the hotel, the Chalets de l’Armancette are in a little hamlet with panoramic views of Mont Blanc. Three beautiful, stunningly luxurious chalets on the Plateau de la Croix at 1450m. There’s also a relaxation chalet with hot tubs and a sauna. Concierge, chef and house-keeping services are on hand. The chalets are beautifully decorated, with cosy rooms and log fires, ski rooms and kitchens chefs will love.
Truly Nirvana in the mountains…
Take a wander through the little village to enjoy stunning mountain views of the Dômes de Miage and say hello to the friendly dog at ski shop Pierre Penz et Filles at the bottom of the ski lift. Pop into the baroque style church of St Nicolas, one of the most beautiful in the Pays du Mont-Blanc. And don’t miss the Museum of Sacred Art in the restored former presbytery. There’s even a tiny tourist office in the town. Take a tour of L’Armancette glacier with a guided ski-touring session. There is loads to do whatever the season.
Since 1909 visitors have been hopping on the Mont-Blanc Tramway and heading to the top of the highest peak in Europe. It’s an experience you shouldn’t miss – the highest rack and pinion railway in France. The views are stunning whether in winter or summer, If you take the last ride of the day you’ll enjoy an amazing sunset over the Aravis Mountain Range.
Saint-Nicolas-de-Véroce is not big and blingy, it’s authentic, charming and welcoming, the sort of place you fall in love with and always want to return to.
Lively Saint-Gervais is nearby with its thermal water baths. Le Fayet also has thermal baths and Le Bettex is home to alpine farms and amazing views. There are more than 70 restaurants in the four villages of Saint-Gervais as well as on the mountains (details: www.saintgervais.com)
A little corner of Paradise
I stayed at l’Armancette in late summer. The weather was perfect for long walks, bike rides, paragliding, sight-seeing, lazing round the pool and generally chilling. I can promise you this – it is a little corner of paradise in the French alps, and one visit will never be enough.
www.armancette.com is a member of the Leading Hotels of the World