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First of all to follow on from The best Aprés Ski bar in the World? Part 1 I have to make a decision about my own preference and it's far tougher than I thought it would be. I keep remembering great times at so many bars. In Austria, the Ice Bar in Mayrhofen and the Krazy Kanguruh in St Anton are standouts. In Canada, Merlins on Blackcomb (Whistler) with Guitar Doug rocks. In France, the Rond Pointe of Méribel and in Switzerland the Aprés Ski bar in the Farinet in Verbier are greatly enhanced by the proliferation of uninhibited British customers 'on the lash'.
For the quality of music, the smoke flares, the flame throwing, the champagne splashing, the waffles, the DJ - David Dupenloup, and the incredible energy of Kely Starlight, the singing and dancing bar top host, it has to be La Folie Douce. This Val d'Isére bar, that is literally the French for sweet madness, just edges out the Krazy Kanguruh.
Secondly, after much deliberation and discussion here's what the Iglu team of experts came up with:
Bauer’s Skialm - Saalbach.
Indoor and outdoor bar areas, but inside is the place to be for the weirdest and wildest music and dancing. A real international crowd making the most of well-priced beers and shots for a torrid three hours: 4-7pm. - Boyd
Umbrella Bar - Santa Christina, Val Gardena
Euro pop, free shots, a fire-breathing bar tender and semi-naked dancing on the tables in ski boots combine to make some of the wildest après ski parties I've seen. It's only open from 4-8 but there aren't many people still able to stand up after that anyway... - James
Le Jump Bar - Courchevel 1850
If you feel that the combination of toffee and vodka is the best thing since sliced bread then this is where you need to be. If it wasn't for a slight uphill and small road you could ski into the front door. - Wade
Le Grotte du Yeti - Tignes
This is a
The Mooserwirt, St Anton
It's for those who want to express themselves by showing off their moves, grooving on the table with a drink in one hand, and an audience that appreciates the extrovert (Without the threat of a burly bouncer taking you out). - Nigel
Scotty's Bar - Tignes
Roaring fire and live music overlooking the heated pool outside. With some tasty bar snacks served if you get peckish. Low ceilings and wooden decor make this a traditional après experience! - Tom
MBC - Chamonix
Perfect place for massive portions of food after a day of skiing or whatever activity you are in Chamonix for. Well worth the walk out of town for one of their big tasty burgers and the fantastic beers brewed on the premises. Perfect for a good night out with a group of friends. - Jay (Cham Fanatic)
Smithy's Tavern - Les Deux Alpes
It's great fun, and serves the best hangover breakfast! - Esther
The infamous Dusty's in Whistler
It has everything you can ask for in an aprés ski bar. Ski to the door location, massive sun deck with BBQ's going in the afternoon. Pool tables inside and the whole bar is so spacious it can take a big crowd. The music, the food and the atmosphere are second to none. - Linda
Bar Le Monde in Val Thorens
Because... 'I love the barmaid'! - Nick J
Red Lion, Vail.
A perfect place to give it large in front of the soft Americans with their Miller Lights. The high altitude boozing promotes a real sense of euphoria. - Adam Calway
Seppi's bar - Kitzbuhel
Great music, icy cold lager, Jagermeisters and the chance you might run into the legendary party primate; 'Spank' the monkey... - Steve
The 'Après Ski Bar' part of the Farinet - Verbier
Total Carnage! Live bands about sixish every day, a roof that opens up occasionally to get rid of the steam, cheap lager and a raging mosh pit. Not a place for the faint hearted. It's starts early and goes very hard for just a few hours so get in straight off the slopes. - Scotty
Rond Point - Méribel
A great place after a day on the mountain. Whether you finish off when the crowds have gone home with a schuss from the top of the Saulire or emerge from the steeper and bumpier Meribel Couloir, where better than this. The talk is all about the day's exploits, everybody coming off the slopes can find it easily and the Live music means the hills really do come alive. - Thomas
The legendary Après Skihut in Rotterdam - Cynthia (you'd never guess she was Dutch)
Mooserwirt - St Anton
Exactly the same kind of atmosphere as the Folie Douce in Val D'Isere. Rather than playing funky house though, it ramps up at the start of the day with Europe 'the final countdown' and then rolls into a mix of euro pop and disco. Absolutely no posers here and with beautiful Austrian girls behind the bar & a seemingly endless supply of Jager Bombs, you can't go wrong! - Adam Clark (Iglu blading and monoboard specialist)
Bar Alexandra - Val d'Isére
One of the few places in Val that isn't rammed full of Henrys and Tarquins. This bar is underrated and away from the melee. Run by Val legend Kiwi Phil, the Alex is frequented mainly by French locals or those in the know. Rack up some pool, enjoy a Desperado, and listen to whatever hip hop or drum n bass cut of choice is playing that day. You can also grab some food in the adjoining 4 seasons, home to a tasty Thai curry. Done. - Dave
Pub Le Skilodge - La Tania
Après ski in the Skilodge is a pretty raucous affair. With a packed pub fuelled on toffee vodka, chartreuse and Mutzig, mixed with some of the best après ski bands in the alps and entertaining locals, anything can happen. Plus, where else in the 3 Valleys can you get a pint for under €5! - Stephen
Ice Bar - Mayrhofen
For those of you who cant get enough of your Dutch Hard House Umpa Lumpa anthems, start your night with ski boot stomping to those funny little dance routines, then the Ice Bar in Mayrhofen is the place for you. At the bottom of the main Penkenbahn gondola in the heart of the resort, this bar is said to have the largest turn over of Grolsch beer per night than any other place in Europe, and it shows as it gets pretty packed. Cool down by the beer spray....this place goes off! Damian
Krazy Kanguruh aka KK's - St Anton.
From the cute girls dressed in fluffy kangaroo outfits showing off their pouches, to the dirty dancing on the tables, I love it all! It can get quite cramped for space by 3pm but there is an awesome atmosphere in and outside, and whatever the time, it's always Jager bomb o'clock. - Nick HH
Darbelos - Courchevel Le Praz
The combination of 8% mutzig, open fires, savoyarde cheeses and weird local music acts is hard to resist. - Dave Mills
Feel free to send us your suggestions on the best apres ski bars on our twitter page.
Written by Adam Johnson
In these highly political times, when I'm asked my opinion about the the two party system, my answer is always the same. It's the after party you should attend.
In ski resorts around the world the French term for after party has been adopted as the standard. You and I know it as aprés ski.
So where is the best aprés ski bar in the world? I could fill ten pages on this topic and whatever my conclusions, they would be hotly contested by seasonaires from virtually every resort, who have had the time of their lives in their local.
It's generally conceded that the Austrians are the loudest and least inhibited when it comes to dancing on tables in your ski boots. They probably make the toughest tables in the world. However, when I polled the ski experts here in Iglu.com, there was wide spread of countries, and somewhat surprisingly, good number of French bars made the list. So what makes a good bar?
The Scandinavian resorts lay claim to having the best looking and best English speaking bar staff; the Italians, the most stylish and charming to the Ladies; the Canadians, the most laid back; the Americans, the least likely to have heard of your quaint country; the Austrians, the most likely to be drinking shots on the tables with you and; the French, where you are more likely to be served by Brits, Aussies and Scandis if the party's going off.
No matter where you are in the world, live music makes all the difference. Sweden seems to dominate the market in producing good aprés ski bands that get the crowd rocking in resorts right across Europe. They'll usually be leading the shot drinking games from the stage. It also helps to be in a bar that attracts the women of the resort with free drink offers. As anyone who's ever been to resorts that only offer extreme skiing, like Jackson Hole, can testify, the lack of women can be party deflating.
If you really want to make it as a legendary aprés ski bar then you absolutely must have a range of vodka shots and plenty of Jagermeister. Preferably dispensed by an attractive Australian girl offering laybacks at your table. You only have two to three hours to really get involved in an aprés ski session so there's no time for sedate drinking. The bars are crowded so shots and the largest beers you can buy are the order of the day.
With all this in mind I have opened the floor to the Iglu team and will bring you the results by the end of the week. Feel free to tweet us your suggestions.
If you'd like to see what the Iglu team thought check out The best Aprés Ski bar in the World? Part 2.
Many of us in days gone by wished for the life of a professional skier or snowboarder. Waking up everyday to go and hike the latest line with some friends and a camera man, honing our latest tricks in the park in the afternoon and then enjoying a few aprés ski beers ready to do it all again the following day.
Ok, so the closest most of us have ever been to that is working in a chalet or bar and hitting the mountain at every opportunity, the only beers we enjoyed were on those nights our bodies weren't crying for bed by 9pm. I may be understating the training required, traveling needed and constant drive to be the best that the pro-riders endure. Unfortunately there aren't too many of us that can match Travis Rice or Candide Thovex.
The one thing that we do all forget is what a professional snowboarder or skier do once they hang up their boots. There are few whose efforts to support their dreams turn into their next career. So Graham Bell and Ed Leigh may keep us entertained whilst watching BBC snowsports but there are not many who have been brave enough to start a business based on our own interests and succeeded. Queue Gilly Seagrave.
For those who know Gilly she is a perfectionist. She has been around the British scene for some time and still gets cracking pictures for her sponsors, coaches budding young riders with Our Camp and her boutique clothes brand EKA is taking off.
EKA is Gilly's new passion and pride and started off as a way of financing snowboarding by making beanies for her friends. Thanks to her partner Nils, who convinced her she could do much more than sell a few hats in Morzine, EKAwear was born and the brand already has a fantastic selection of boutique clothing. The items look just at home in the streets of Morzine or Courchevel as they do on Oxford Street or the Kings Road.
The collections produced by EKA are fantastic accessories that not only look stunning but are ecologically friendly and ethically produced. With more and more brands taking this approach the winter sports scene is trying to preserve the mountains in their own way. Patagonia work tirelessly on their carbon footprint in both production and distribution, and brands like Volcom and Quicksilver offer ranges using recycled or sustainable materials.
When was the last time you watched the Winter X-games or Olympics and the podium was full of over 35s? Next time you hit the slopes and are watching kids inverted in the park, dropping huge cliffs or race training just wonder to yourself what will they do when it's all over. Like with most sports
Written by Stephen Adam
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