Les Houches is a long strung-out resort, so you’ll need to be prepared for some walking. The finest accommodation in the resort is Les Granges d’En Haut: a gorgeous little oasis in a village otherwise lacking in stylish places to stay, and famous only for its steep World Cup downhill course. Some 14 little chalets are set above the main hotel – all of them contain four attractive bedrooms and en suite bathrooms, a beautifully equipped kitchen, sitting/dining room, sauna and terrace. The style is traditional alpine chalet with open log fires and lots of wood and slate, lamps made from antlers and animal horns. All this is cleverly fused with features such as studded leather armchairs, cow skin rugs and stools, and lots of different tweedy textures.
You can be as flexible as you like here, either eating half board in the hotel’s excellent restaurant, ordering dinner to be delivered to your chalet dining table, or you can self-cater and be completely independent. Spa at the Granges features an indoor pool, Jacuzzi, tropical showers, massage and fitness rooms and an outdoor terrace. There’s also a useful free chauffeuring service.
The village is spread out, so choose your location with care
The four-star CGH Hameau de Pierre Blanche residence is attractive, with lots of wood and local stone. The apartments have well equipped kitchens, and share an indoor swimming-pool, spa and fitness centre. Close by is Pierre & Vacances Les Hauts de Chavants, a series of clean, chalet-style self-catering apartments a short walk from the Prarion gondola and opposite the bus stop to Chamonix, providing decent accommodation at a low price. There’s an indoor swimming-pool in one of the buildings: “A swim in the enclosed heated pool with views on Mont Blanc has to be one of life’s special moments,” said a visitor on Tripadvisor. Bear in mind that the development is split into several buildings and not all are ski-in, ski-out.
Hotel Beau-Site is in the heart of the village with a restaurant and swimming-pool. The bedrooms are all cheerfully decorated in red and white fabrics with pine furniture. Hotel Chris-Tal has rooms in a variety of sizes – sleeping between one and five people. It houses La Dent du Géant restaurant with Savoyard specialities, and there’s also a games room and swimming-pool in the hotel. Hotel du Bois is decorated in traditional chalet style with lots of wood, and houses Le Caprice restaurant. The hotel also has eight separate apartments with three to four bedrooms each.
Although Hotel Slalom is chalet-style from the outside, its interior is more minimalist in style than most of the other hotels here. It is conveniently located opposite the main lift and is said to be “very comfortable and modern.”