Marble bathrooms, heli-skiing and fine dining, Michael Bennett, Managing Director of tailor-made ski specialists Ski Independence gives us a run-down of his dream Whistler ski trip….
Whistler, in British Columbia, is consistently ranked as the number one ski resort in North America. Famed for its epic terrain, it’s one of those places that ticks all the boxes – and then some!
A mile of vertical, two massive mountains, stunning terrain, huge snow, an Olympic pedigree, a long season and a village with a vibe to rival anything on the planet – the superlatives go on and on.
So, if you could put together your dream trip to Whistler, what might it look like? Michael Bennett, Managing Director of tailor-made ski specialists Ski Independence, reckons it should look something like this:
Upgrade Your Flight
Let’s start with the flights. You’re going to be in the air for a while, so you’ll need some leg-room. So start your holiday in style and fly to Vancouver with British Airways in Club World or First.
Upgrade Your Transfer
Once you land you could clamber aboard a bus for the 2-hour road trip up to Whistler, or take a slick private transfer in a private sedan or SUV. Be met at the airport arrivals hall and be delivered to the door of your hotel or condo.
Upgrade Your Accommodation
Forget that awkwardly shaped chalet room you stayed at in Morzine last winter! In Whistler, you’re going to be in a suite on the Gold floor at the iconic Fairmont Chateau.
A Fairmont Gold Executive Suite comes with a gas fireplace, flat screen TV, king-sized bed, pull-out sofa bed and five-piece marble bathroom, complete with jet tub and oversized shower with multiple heads. Complimentary high-speed internet access, of course, plus all the comforts of staying on the exclusive Gold level. That means your own exclusive concierge service, private check-in area, private lounge, honour bar and evening canapés.
Private Instruction & Heli-skiing
Of course, you’ll ski both Whistler and Blackcomb mountains. Hire a private instructor to both guide and teach you and add a day’s heli-skiing to test your newly-mastered technique.
Off the slopes, everyone knows the perfect ski day ends with tall beers and taller tales of ski exploits; enjoy some après ski at the Garibaldi Lift Company – world renowned as ‘the’ place to be at the end of your ski day.
Eat at the acclaimed restaurants Rimrock, Araxi and Hy’s and sabre champagne at the Bearfoot Bistro.
If you’re feeling adventurous, book a Ziptreck eco-tour through the trees or slide down the Olympic bobsleigh track – sure you’ll feel like an elephant is sitting on your head for about ten seconds, but you’ll want the video and be sure to frame the certificate!
A luxury stay in Vancouver
At the end of your stay, leave Whistler with a private transfer back to Vancouver and a couple of nights in a suite on the Gold floor of the Fairmont Pacific Rim and explore all that the wonderfully cosmopolitan ocean city Vancouver has to offer, before your Club World or First flight back home. Final tick.
Need something different?
Ski Independence can make all this happen for you. And OK, this blow-the-budget version may cost a jaw-dropping £12,000 per person, but the good news is that a lot of this luxury is actually eminently affordable.
The service Ski Independence offer is totally bespoke, building the holiday around what you want. You can depart from any UK airport, any day of the week, for any duration, to any hotel and much, much more.
7 nights at the Fairmont Chateau Whistler staying in a Fairmont Executive Gold Suite (B&B), including BA Club World flights & private SUV transfers costs from £5349pp.
Swap the executive suite at the Fairmont for a standard room and skip the stretch for a shared transfer and throw in six-day lift passes and prices start from £940 (not including flights). Accommodation, flights and transfer options start from £1,425 for seven nights. You still get to enjoy the Fairmont’s extensive Health Club and relaxing Vida Spa. You can still ride the free shuttle from right outside the door, take breakfast at The Wildflower restaurant, savour an après-ski drink at The Mallard Lounge and enjoy fine dining at The Grill Room, after a dip in the superb indoor/outdoor pool.
Whistler’s massive range of ski accommodation means there’s something to suit every budget from 5-star hotels to 3-star condos. Whether you are looking for a luxury full service hotel such as the Fairmont or a great value self-catered condo such as The Aspens, Ski Independence can arrange your holiday to suit your exact requirements.
Pre-book your lessons for superb discounts, and top advice on what to book from a huge array of options. Choose from a full range of discounted Whistler lift tickets, ski & snowboard rentals and snow school lessons and book early for our very best prices.
Off the slopes, Whistler is hard to beat; world class shopping and après-ski with over 90 restaurants in Whistler Village alone, ranging from sushi to fondue and, if you still have energy, there are plenty of opportunities to party into the night.
And if you do fancy the bobsleigh ride, that’s $179 per person. But worth it!