My good friend James, aka The Network, has kindly agreed to, in his words: “grace my blog with his literary presence”. What this means is that he has written, in my words: “a good but occassionally crass” review of the accommodation they stayed in earlier this year – Tignes. It’s good stuff so read on…
It’s march. 2006. We are on the bus from Geneva maybe half an hour outside of Tignes. Wilka and I are playing 20 questions to try and get our minds off the fact we still have about 12 hours before we touch the snow…
Before I left, a few people described Tignes as a frozen council estate, and when I saw line after line of high-rise flats I knew why! So, first impressions of the apartment’s exterior could be better – loads better. We knew what to expect from shots on the web so we continued inside.
To best sum up the reaction to the insides I’m gonna quote Gav. But before I do, some context is needed. The other half of our crew that Gav is bunking with have a place not 5 mins walk down the hill called La Ferme du Val Claret – a NICE chalet. He clumsily and embarrasimgly let out the following encouraging sentiment: ‘it’s…different…to ours’.
The place was functional at best. Clean yea, but not a looker.
It sleeps 6 people – 2 in a decent double bedroom, 2 on sofa beds in the lounge/kitchen and 2 in odd bunk beds in the hall that fold out from the wall.
The guy on the top bunk ended up on the floor under the dining table cos it was too hot up there and more than a little awkward to ascend the questionable ladder provided.
By contrast my bed was alright, though one night i passed out someplace leaving the bed open for one of the boys to ‘deflower’…didn’t enjoy sleeping in it after that so much. No beef to the bed, mind. The bed was sound.
Snowboard storage is a major problem at La Prariond. Each flat (that sleeps 6, remember) is assigned a locker downstairs that would do well to fit 6 pairs of Ski’s never mind 6 snowboards (with boots). We ended up not using the locker and just carried our stuff upstairs. There is a possibility that the mildew patch in the corner may not have been there before…
The kitchen. We had some of the usual stuff: grill, oven, fridge (with a microscopic freezer – ironic?), sink, taps (hot and cold), knives and forks. The cups and glasses were wank. We had to buy mugs from the Sherpa (local superstore effort) to make a decent cup of tea. I know I said we had an oven, but it either didn’t work or we were all retarded. One time, I was making some garlic bread and it took like a half hour to slightly warm up. We learned to love the hobs. A microwave would have came in very handy.
Kitchen makes food. Food makes turd. Lets talk about the shitter. Wilka put spoons in it. He also made it smell like nothing on this earth twice a day like clockwork. Not a lot more to say about it. It was pretty clean, in a plain white room all on its own and flushed almost every time.
Next door to the crapper was the bathroom sporting a tub with a decent shower attached. Mind, I’m a shade over six two so I had to be crafty to get the unadjustable shower head angled to hit me above the shoulders. I liked the bathroom – it had a massive big mirror which suits me just fine.
Ok, I feel I need to shift onto the apartments good points now, and location is top of the list. It’s 2 minutes walk from the Bollin/Fresner chairlift that can get you on some nursery slopes or shoot you half way to Val d’Isere. In fact, all the main lifts are well within walking distance and at the end of the day you can ride to the door. We often took the Bollin up cos it was easier to ride back down the kiddie slope than walk! SWEET! Oh yea, the bottom of said kiddie run is an ideal small-kicker location. We built one and I hurt my ribs.
Off the slope, the flat is real close to the town. The Sherpa and bars are no more than 5mins away.
La Prariond is not a good looking place. It’s not mad cheap either. Cheaper than some, but all in all we didn’t pay much less than Gav and the others did for their lah-di-dah place. It needs a lot of work before I’d be happy to return. Having said that, we all had a class time, and if nothing else the lame ass flat gave us something to laugh about; cos for all its shortcomings, it was good enough. It kept us warm and lets not forget why we left our smashing homeland UK in the first place: s-n-o-w. The quality of the flat didn’t make that any worse. In fact, it made us want to stay out in it longer.