As the birthplace of modern Alpine skiing and the spiritual home of après-ski, it is no wonder that Austria is one of the most popular winter sport destinations in the world.
Bordering Germany and the Czech Republic in the north and Switzerland to the west, Austria is a highly mountainous landlocked country with superb skiing, fast lift systems and arguably the world’s liveliest après-ski. Whilst not having the highest slopes in the Alps, it does have some of the greatest resorts including St. Anton, a traditional resort bustling with activity, and Kitzbuhel, a Tyrolean resort famous for its historic Hahnenkamm downhill ski races. Austria has a seductive combination of picturesque villages and cosy alpine charm, mixed with inter-connected ski areas and plenty of old-fashioned fun making it irresistible to holiday goers.
The jewel in Austria’s crown however is the outstanding Arlberg ski region, described as the cradle of alpine skiing. Set around the Arlberg Pass, the area is renowned for its long winter sports tradition with the Arlberg ski club founded in 1901. As of 2016/17, the Arlberg became the largest interconnected ski region in Austria and one of the five largest worldwide, offering 305 km of interconnected downhill skiing and 200 km of deep-snow runs in one of the most snow-sure regions in the Alps. The area stretches from cosmopolitan St. Anton and traditional St. Christoph in the south to Stuben, Zurs, Lech and Oberlech in the north and on to Warth in the northeast.
The Arlberg region is also home to the White Ring, one of the most beautiful and impressive ski circuits in the Alps linking Lech with its neighbours Zurs, Zug and Oberlech. Since 2006, a cult ski race sees over 1,000 racers, amateurs and pros alike tackle 22 km of piste and over 5,500 metres of altitude. Once a humble farming village, Lech has transformed into an atmospheric, elegant resort, and like its neighbour Zurs, is home to some of the most exclusive luxury chalets in the Alps.
Other impressive resorts in the Tyrolean region include Alpbachtal, arguably the “Most Beautiful Village in Austria”, Bad Kleinkirchheim, a World Cup resort in the southeast of Austria and last but certainly not least, Zillertal, a diverse valley close to Innsbruck with mouthwatering cuisine and 515 km of groomed piste to discover.
The number of luxury chalets in Austria is on the rise and with much celebrated and renowned resorts such as Lech and Kitzbuhel it's easy to see why. These prominent resorts have long been the 'go-to' destinations for high-flying business people and celebrities. Considered and consistent investment keeps the resorts well-maintained, attracting international tourists and with fewer high-specification properties available to rent than in the popular French and Swiss resorts demand and interest is always heightened.
Notable properties that are available to rent include the palacial Chalet N in Oberlech, the privileged area of Lech that is also home to the likes of Chalet Uberhaus and Chalet 1551. Along the road in the village of Stuben am Arlberg, situated between Zurs and St Anton, is Haus Hannes Schneider which plays tribute to Hannes Schneider - one of the pioneer's of Alpine skiing, without question one of the most unusual luxury lodges in the whole of Austria.