Unique Living
January 19th, 2015 | by Serge Cowan

The Ski Factor

Young Professionals from London and Geneva are buying their primary homes in luxury ski resorts such as Morzine rather than buying at home

The ski season is upon us and the snow is now well and truly falling – thanks to the relief of millions of holidaymakers and resort employees across Europe!

Since the season started towards the end of last year, those who are lucky enough to own ski chalets have been flying out to their holiday homes whenever they can, whilst tourists join their friends and family for their annual ski trips or first skiing holidays. From chalet staff to snowboard and ski instructors, everybody is looking forward to a snow-packed ski season.

The French Alps need little in the way of introduction. The luxury ski resorts nestled within the Alps, which include Chamonix, Morzine, Courchevel 1850, Megeve, Meribel and Val d’Isere, have drawn vast numbers of global visitors for many years. Demand for property within the Alps is just as strong, with chalets and apartments attracting wealthy overseas buyers keen to invest in one of the most prestigious markets in the world.

With superb lifestyles and many locations offering Summer as well Winter activities, it is of no surprise that people are making ski properties their primary home. One such location is Morzine, where our local office has noticed an increasing number of property buyers from London or Geneva choosing to make their primary home in the area instead of buying at home in the UK. Young professionals in particular are preferring to put their money into a large property in a resort, while keeping a smaller property or even a rental property as their home during the working week in the city.

Sharon Scott from Unique Living’s local office in Morzine and Portes du Soleil explains: “Morzine is a well-established mountain resort and has a village charm about it – popular in all seasons. Ultimately people are buying in Morzine because they are searching for a change of lifestyle and whatever that lifestyle is, for a lot of people Morzine and the Portes du Soleil can offer it, whether you are a skier, biker, climber, walker, yoga enthusiast, painter, nature lover, musician or a professional triathlete. The joy is they can use their UK pad if they want to enjoy the benefits of renting their property out in the ski season.

“It is not just the size of the ski area and new infrastructures like the Prodains lift and the development of the snow parks in Avoriaz and Les Gets that are the biggest factor. The combination of Morzine’s approximity with Geneva and the short transfer time has encouraged people to come here. This combined with Lake Geneva and its beaches being only twenty minutes away and the fantastic new indoor and outside swimming pool complex, allowing all year things to do. It is becoming the new hot training spot for triathletes and swimmers. Training conditions and facilities are perfect, offering lake, pool, altitude and Tour de France mountain passes for bikers. The French national swimming team trained in the Morzine pool last winter and for British triathletes, this is their new favourite spot.

“For families with members that don’t ski, or that aren’t particularly sporty, there are great shops and restaurants and a growing cultural and music scene provided by the local tourist office and local businesses.”

“Within the property market, there is also something for everyone from farms that need renovating starting at around 250 000€ to ski studios at 90 000€ and luxury chalets up to 3 000 000€; there is something for every budget. The ski bus service in resort and from the outlying villages is excellent and you never have to travel more than 20 minutes every morning to get to the slopes, even from the furtherest located villages.

Prices continue to rise and although properties in the heart of Morzine are the always the most sought after, the outlying villages also offer great investment opportunities for people with lower budgets, as there is a growing market for holidays away from the maddening crowd.

Exchange rates and low mortgage rates at the moment are obviously helping the market, but most importantly a fantastic return on investment is a given in an area where one can expect to earn from 20 000€ to 45000€ a season for an apartment or ski chalet.”

Surrounded by more than 426km of pistes across 12 resorts over France and Switzerland, the Portes du Soleil ski area is vast. Morzine has an excellent central position and has gentle tree-lined slopes, ideal for beginners. The more adventurous enjoy he runs around Le Pleney whilst Powder enthusiasts revel in the slopes above Nyon and Chamosiere. There are plenty of bars that get busy once the lifts close but primarily as a family resort, village ambiance tends to be fairly subdued creating a quietly attractive village charm.

Chalets for sale in Morzine

13 bedroom chalet – €2,995,000IMG_386925_1_original

This chalet is currently split into 5 apartments but if turned back into one chalet it would be the biggest chalet in Morzine.

9 bedroom Chalet – €1,650,000IMG_386924_1_original
This fabulous chalet is located just 500 m from the Avoriaz cable car in Les Prodains, making it perfect for serious skiers.

7 bedroom chalet – €890,000IMG_385495_7_original
This wonderful 7 bedroom, 5 bathroom chalet offers spacious accommodation throughout. With cosy bedrooms (5 en-suites), the chalet has a charming large wooden terrace and a number of balconies with beautiful mountain views.

4 bedroom chalet – €740,000IMG_386262_1_original
A traditional ski chalet in a great location, close to the lifts and the village of Morzine. It needs some updating, but is otherwise in good condition and rents out extremely well during the winter months.

Serge Cowan

Serge Cowan

Managing Director and Founder

Serge has an extensive marketing background, after a broadcasting career, Serge moved into marketing where he worked for BSkyB & a number of leading Public Relations agencies.
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