Les Arcs is getting ready for an extra special winter this year as we are celebrating its 50th anniversary! Now is the perfect time to discover (or rediscover) this magical place. It has 425km of slopes of all levels, four villages, optimal snowfall due to the slopes at over 2000m alt. and a tourist population that grows each year (+1.1% between the winter of 2016/2017 and 2017/2018). Les Arcs is the place to be!
The very first hotel opened in Arc 1600 in 1968 and the resort has been expanding and developing ever since. This year, to celebrate the 50 year mark, Les Arcs is offering a free day lift pass for all those with birthdays during the season: between the 15th December 2018 and the 27th April 2019.
Come and see what Les Arcs has in store for you.
New this winter
Firstly, the Comborcière chair lift has been replaced. With the new faster and more comfortable lift you will be at the summit before you know it. At the top you can take a moment to admire the view of the Mont Blanc at the new ultra modern picnic zone with its photo spot, Wi-Fi connection and charging points.
The Arc 1600 area has grown this year with the addition of a new red slope. The Aiguille Rouge, the highest point in Les Arcs, boasts a 35-metre footbridge that allows skiers and pedestrians to admire the entire valley from a vantage point of over 3200m.
We have upped our accommodation game with the new Club Med in Arc 1600 and that’s not all, as the Ridge and Edenarc chalets will be added soon.
Finally, from December 2019, our beloved funicular will be getting a major remodel. The cars will be more modern and the windows much larger and more open to give you the best view of the valley during each 7-minute journey.
As every year, the European Film Festival is timed perfectly to coincide with the first week of the season. This cultural event runs until the 22nd December and is honoured by some big names from the French cinema scene such as Romain Duris, Valeria Bruni Tedeschi, Charlotte Le Bon and many more. For all information and the schedule: https://lesarcs-filmfest.com/fr
Cultural, sporting and culinary events, this is Les Arcs at its best.
26th December: 50 years of Les Arcs opening night
10th January: La Pierre Blanche night ski race
25th to 27th January: The Big Up and Down, one of the highlights of the season. Follow this link for more information: https://www.lesarcs.com/big-up-down.html
16th February to 11th March: 50 years of Les Arcs Ski Show
22nd March: Star Trail
30th March to 27th April: The Springtime of Skiing
The season is off to a great start, the snow is laying thick and fast and the locals are ready to welcome you. For more information about the current winter season, our events and to get your lift pass, go to https://www.lesarcs.com!
To book your ski lessons, click here : https://www.arc-aventures.com/hiver
From the Apocalypse Snow team
In 1980, Arc 2000 had to find its place among the other ski resorts that were already filling with international superstars and create its own identity. Alain Gaimard, a mountain guide, having just been named Technical Director, had a dream to expand and develop the youngest of the Les Arcs villages. Being one of the largest resorts, it had huge potential for winter sports just waiting to be explored. In this new resort full of possibilities, Alain began testing…he tried monoskiing for two winters (hardly known in France at the time) and brought boards back from America. The Aiguille Rouge became the test lab and playground for snow sports enthusiasts.
When the experiments were over, he began getting his friends together for a new project, the likes of which had never been imagined in the Alps: a ski film. The film was ‘Ski Espace’; filmed in 1982 with a few talented young instructors from the resort: Régis Rolland, James Blanc, Jean-Yves Perry, Pierrot Beguin, Lino Ortuno, Jean-Michel Zucchi and Claudie Blanc. It was an instant hit and took the ski-world by storm. The instructors were completely at ease on monoskis as well as snowboards, an unheard-of concept. The only ones who came close were Alain Revel and Philippe Lecadre who monoskied at the Grands Montets in Chamonix and were described as being more like professional dancers than athletes. Both joined the team in Arc 2000 and the group was completed with the additions of Alain Didierjean and William Arnaud. Finally they could to begin filming the Apocalyse Snow saga. These were three short films shot between 1983 and 1985 that followed the story of Régis Rolland ‘the snowboard genius’ and his rider girlfriend as they race around the world hotly pursued by an evil band of monoskiers intent on stealing ‘the secret of the glide’. The film was effortlessly brilliant without taking itself too seriously, a revelation for the whole industry. It featured breath-taking scenery, staggering technical ability, crazy stunts, fearless heroes, evil villains, catastrophic summersaults, helicopters, avalanches, thrills, chills and loads of fun…a legend was born.
Last in the line was the very beautiful Canon Surf with Régis Rolland and Jean Nerva which rounded of the filming adventure in 1986.
Running the show behind the scenes of these films were Patrice Aubertel, Patrice Lafond, Laurent Chevallier who are also renowned for their exploits on the slopes of Les Arcs, Haute-Tarentaise, North America and Japan.
The films were shown throughout France and have been seen by every ski-fanatic. The films’ went way beyond the promotion of Arc 2000 and became a catalyst for innovation in skiing and snowboarding. The new movement had begun. Towards the end of the 80’s more than 20,000 snowboard and monoski enthusiasts were invading the resorts and the industry quickly jumped on the trend. Techniques were honed, methods were developed by the ESF and competitions sought a federal framework to follow, a whole new market had been created. Skiers were now far from being the only kings of the slopes.
Let's just say it, Arc 2000 and Apocalypse Team were at the heart of the monoski and snowboard movement with their films that enchanted the public and professionals alike. Their influence can still be felt here in France and around the world.
By Alain Gaimard
Mountain guide, Arc 2000’s first technical director in 1980 and co-creator of the film trilogy: Ski Espace, Apocalypse Snow and Canon Surf.
During the shooting of the five films that went on for five years, the Apocalypse team learned a lot. We grew together. The experience we gained from 1983 to 1987, from Ski Espace to Canon Surf with the three Apocalypse Snow films in the middle, changed everyone’s outlook. I was no exception. It was the constant discovery that motivated the team and enriched the experiences of the individuals. We progressed in our techniques while filming scenes that were often very difficult and sometimes even dangerous. The dedication of the group is what allowed us to succeed in filming the more challenging parts. We were also exploring the world of cinema which was completely foreign to us. We played around with different monoski and snowboard techniques to make original films. We created as a team, always pushing ourselves to keep innovating. We experimented with different ways of filming to best show off the technical side of the sports and came up with new techniques to create more interesting scenes. We wanted to show another side of skiing. Through the hard times of filming and the excitement and passion of creating something new, we were joined together by a fierce friendship. It was a wonderful time.
Apocalypse Snow, Ed. EPA Sports – 1986