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Ski Blog

Love Après? We Interviewed a Manager at La Folie Douce...

clock 28th January 2014 | comment0 Comments

Your friend is knocking on your chalet door. It’s 8.15am, and you’re exhausted from yesterday’s ski/snowboarding session, but you get up regardless. You open the curtains, and to your delight, it’s a bluebird day - fresh powder snow has fallen overnight. After a few hours of ripping it up, you grab a bite to eat and a hot chocolate. You hear a quiet droning noise in the background, and as you get closer to the sound, you see arms waving in the air and the sound of champagne popping. The next 3 hours are a wonderful blur.

Sound familiar? You’ve probably been to La Folie Douce.

The legendary après chain was dreamt up in 2007 in Val D’Isere – at the time, it was a brand new concept, allowing people to enjoy open-air clubbing in the snowy mountains at high altitudes. The smaller Val Thorens branch opened in 2009, and has since seen notoriously high-octane parties from 2-5pm.

We caught up with Leonor Aublin, a manager at La Folie Douce in Val Thorens…

There are 4 versions of La Folie Douce, which started in Val D’Isere - How does Val Thorens differ from the other 3 branches?

Firstly, we are in Val Thorens. A young and international resort, well known for being the biggest ski domain and its partying atmosphere. Therefore it attracts a crowd between 20 – 30 years old that has the energy to ski and party intensely… Faced to this audience, we have to be up to the task. And our artists know perfectly how to bring a crowd to peak excitement.

“The PartyMakers” composed of DJ Lyrics, Mister Fluo, Caps and saxophonists Fabien Kisoka and Laurent Audinos go from 2PM to 5PM every day of the week. Secondly, our Folie Douce differs by size; it is smaller, thus cosier.

What’s the strangest thing you’ve ever seen on the terrace?


I’ve never seen anything strange, but I can say that people surprise me every day… whether it be a lady the age of my mother having the time of her life dancing on the table, a kid with the best dance moves, guys writing love messages on their backs for the singer and of course the most creative fancy dress costumes I’ve seen in my life!

What happens at the venue over summer?

We’re closed!

What’s the highest bar bill you have ever had, and what was that customer like?

I couldn’t really say, We’d have to go dig up all the receipts! All I can say is that, what I love about this place is that it’s for all types of wallets. You can come have a beer or go crazy in the VIP spraying Jeroboams of Champagne on the crowd…

Finally, what are the top 3 events you are most looking forward to at La Follie Douce this season?

The Closing Party on the 27th April
The Eletro Carnaval on the 4th March
And the whole Danish week which is always insane


If you want to be dancing on the table tops in Val Thorens this year check out our latest ski deals for Val Thorens.


An Interview with The Jump star Marcus Brigstocke.

clock 27th January 2014 | comment0 Comments

“Be careful about conclusions you draw about people you’ve never met. I looked at the list of people and I was like, man, are you serious? This for a month? I’m actually a bit ashamed of that”.

Like most comedians, funny man and snowboarding enthusiast Marcus Brigstocke is not largely known for his frank, philosophical remarks. Many will recognise the serial satirist from Have I Got News For You or Love Actually, whereas ski and comedy fans may know him from setting up the hugely successful Altitude Comedy Festival in Mayrhofen, Austria, near Innsbruck where The Jump is set.

It seems the new show is bringing out a wonderful, softer side to him rarely seen with professional comedians. Obviously inspired by his experience so far, he was keen to tell me a story about his familiarity to snow sports before joining the show.

“You know I used to ski years ago, and stopped all that for snowboarding which is easier and more fun. Big spongy carpet slippers, only one piece of equipment to worry about...”

“There was a day that was both devastating and awesome in equal measure. My 9 year old son worked incredibly hard all week at ski school in Val D’isere. ‘I’m gonna bring you down The Face , one of the greatest ever downhill courses. I started picking up speed, and he stayed right with me. Then I was going pretty much as fast as I can go, and he said ‘am I alright to go now dad?’ and he just shot past me. It’s devastating.”


Contestants, including Essex girl Amy Childs and Olympic hero Steve Redgrave, have been training hard with Warren Smith and former Team GB skeleton racer Amy Williams. It tests celebrities on Winter sport disciplines, including downhill ski and the bone-shatteringly scary skeleton bob, in which they slide down a course head first. But scariest of all is apparently ‘the jump’ itself.

“The Jump is other worldly in terms of how scary it is. If you ski, you’ve probably done small kickers or little off-piste jumps, maybe hit a mogul with a bit of enthusiasm. This is different. Your ski’s get slotted in rails, and you can’t see anything you’re going to land on until you’re above it and in the air. I’m not an adrenaline junkie or anything like that…” “When I landed it I punched the air, and as soon as I was on my own, I felt tears stream down my face. I just turned to jelly and started crying. Unlike many of the other contestants, I’m still scared of the jump in a very visceral kind of way.”

“Darren Gough, Laura Hamilton and Anthea Turner are fast becoming very good jumpers. Sinitta put skis on her feet for the first time a few weeks ago, and she’s been off the jump. She’s a lovely lady, but she’s not what you think of as a daredevil, adrenaline junkie or whatever - She does it with quiet determination. Same with Amy Childs, star of reality world. She learnt to ski a few weeks ago. The first day she put speed skis on, and coach said, ‘point down, tuck down, build your speed’, and she just nailed it. The video you see of her going ‘oh my god, oh my god’ – she gets a lot better than that.”


The mere thought of Sinitta or Amy Childs scorpioning themselves in the head or face-planting the snow may sound like comedy gold for some sniggering viewers. But not for Brigstocke, who seems to have taken a shine to his new group of buddies.

“I’m not here to collect stories on the people here. I’ll be interested to see how facing fears affects the next few stand up shows I do.”

“Stand up is about exploring ideas in a fearless kind of way, but it’s a bit different to physical danger. But yeah there’ll definitely be material, if only making reference to the race suit they’ve got me in. Not a good look for a man of my size.”


To many fans of Altitude, this “new material” could make an appearance at the next festival in March.

“I can’t wait. A bunch of clowns up in the mountains, jumping around on our boards during the day, jumping around on stage at night... I’m out of the business side of Altitude now which suits me better. It makes me so proud that the festival is out there. This is for skiers and comedy lovers.”

It’s not been all about the laughs though on set. Any sport that instigates fear of this magnitude has an element of danger – viewers may have been disappointed to see a few rumoured contestants missing in the live show on Sunday night.

“There’s a couple of injuries I can’t tell you about, because we’re not sure how It’s going to affect taking part in the show. But I can tell you we’ve had Sam Jones (Flash Gordon) have his entire shoulder rebuilt. Then we have 2 broken bones possibly 3, bruising like I’ve never seen on anybody, and a ruptured hamstring I can confirm I’m in good shape though.”

Injuries aside, it seems the show has brought an otherwise misfitting group of celebrities together, in what could turn out to be a great bit of TV. I ask Brigstocke what he has learnt since starting the show;

“On a serious note, fears overcome makes you feel very good and those things are worth pursuing. On a further philosophical note – be careful about conclusions you draw about people you’ve never met. I looked at the list of people, and I was like, man, are you serious? This for a month? I’m actually a bit ashamed of that. These are actually really awesome people. I’ve shared with them some profound moments of overcoming some full-on fears. Oh, and I’ve learned to skeleton bob.”

…and the golden question. CAN HE WIN?

“It is possible. I’m not a very good jumper. Ultimately it comes down to that. With the other disciplines, I’m in the top 3. To play for the win is not what the cool boys do. I wanna win, I wanna get to the final.”

http://www.blogdash.com/full_profile/?claim_code=a6219807d245d5f3d2efcb146878a582 - Danny, Igluski.com


Ski Yourself Fit This Season

clock 7th January 2014 | comment0 Comments
Burgers, Chips and Beer Yummy Cake & Bread




Christmas is over, you’ve eaten your bodyweight in turkey (not to mention all those Mince Pies!) and now your jeans are feeling a little too tight. Now, you’ve got a ski holiday booked and you’re worried about all that indulgent mountain food – Tartiflette, Raclette, Fondue. ‘How am I ever going to get in to shape again?’, I hear you cry. Well, never fear, all that skiing or boarding you’re about to do may just allow you to eat whatever you want without having to worry…


Snowsports are an excellent form of cardio as well as a great way to tone and strengthen leg, core and arm muscles. Both skiing and snowboarding are particularly good for strengthening the ankles, lower legs, quadriceps and glutes, as you engage these muscles to control your board or skis. Both activities require good balance, which work your core muscles, pulling in your abs and helping to align your spine. As you balance, you use your arm muscles to help steady yourself, working to firm them up, particularly in the upper arms and shoulders.


When your muscles are strong, the body works harder to use them, therefore burning more calories. This, plus being in a cold environment (where your body burns calories just to keep warm) is great news for your metabolism! On top of all these great health benefits, skiing and boarding also release adrenaline and endorphins which lift your mood and make you feel more alert, awake and happy.


Cake Sausage & Bread




So how many calories does skiing / snowboarding burn?
Skiing or boarding for 6 hours can burn a whopping 2000 - 3000 calories, depending on your age, weight and height. With that in mind, it may take a lot less time than you think just to burn off that mulled wine and 3 Wiener Schnitzels you had for lunch…


Fondue Pastries for Breakfast




Here are a few examples of some popular, hearty ski foods and drinks with an estimate of how long it takes to burn off each one (each food portion is based on a 300g serving).


Food / Drink Approx. Calories Approx. amount of Skiing / Boarding it takes to burn it off
Tartiflette 550 1hr 18mins
Fondue 793 1hr 54mins
Apfelstrudel with Custard 548 1hr 18mins
Käsespätzle 885 2hr 6mins
Germknödel 458 1hr 6mins
Raclette 1000 2hrs 24mins
Gnocchi with Tomato Sauce and Cheese 700 1hr 42mins
Goulash Soup with Bread 468 1hr 6mins
Tiroler Gröstl 758 1hr 48mins
Wiener Schnitzel 750 1hr 48mins
1 Nutella Crepe 579 1hr 24mins
3 Glasses of Mulled Wine 820 2hrs
3 Pints of Beer 546 1hr 18mins
1 Mug of Hot Chocolate With Marshmallows and Whipped Cream 321 48mins

Chocolate Fountain Drinks & Choccy Biscuits




Health Tips for Skiing & Snowboarding
The amount of calories burned while out on the slopes are immense and give you reason to feel less guilty about what you consume après ski. A day in the mountains can be exhausting and you will find yourself needing to consume more food in order to feel energised. If you want to know about the best foods to eat in order to keep you powering through, we’ve created a little guide below.


Healthy Canapes Healthy Salmon




  • Breakfast – Breakfast is the most important meal and if you want to set yourself up for a day of skiing / boarding then don’t skip it! Eating in the morning will kickstart your metabolism and give your body the fuel it needs to get through those first few runs. A protein heavy breakfast featuring plenty of salmon, ham or eggs is ideal, as it will keep you full for longer. Throw in some carbs, such as bread or potatoes, and your energy levels will be all set to go.

  • Mid-morning snack – Top up your energy levels mid-morning with a granola bar, protein bar or flapjack. It’s light enough to digest while still skiing, plus it should give you that little extra boost. Remember to keep hydrated too and to drink as much water or fruit juice as you can.

  • Lunch – Lunch is a great time to rebuild your energy. Think carbs and go for a baked potato, pasta, or a whole whole-wheat sandwich. Soups and salads are a great option too as they are packed full of healthy vegetables. Avoid too much fried, greasy food as this will sap your energy levels and leave you feeling groggy. Before hitting up the piste again, try and allow 1 hour to digest your food. If you try and get skiing again too early you risk getting stomach ache and even feeling a little dizzy – not good when navigating slightly more complex runs!

  • Mid-afternoon snack – If you feel tired again mid-afternoon, grab another granola bar, protein bar or flapjack. Fruit is another great, light option too to help keep you going until the evening.

  • Dinner – By the end of the day, your muscles will be tired and will need some good food to help them recover. Eat plenty of protein again – cheese, chicken, red meat – and some more carbs – bread, pasta, potatoes – to restore your energy levels.


Feeling in the mood for a ski trip now? Check out our Last Minute Ski Holidays 2014.


Happy skiing, snowboarding and eating, everyone!

Healthy Canapes



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