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“Club Med, Serre Chevalier Jan 2012”

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Club Med Serre-Chevalier
Ranked #1 of 17 Hotels in Briancon
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersBronze level
London, England, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“Club Med, Serre Chevalier Jan 2012”
Reviewed 14 January 2013

We were 'sold' this on the basis of it not being overly French and it being a great deal as it was all inclusive.

Plus points were the standard of accomodation (great choice of food, acceptable rooms and communal areas) and the fact that if you wanted daily ski lessons then it is a good deal as these and the ski passes are included. Also located in a position that gives easy access to all ski areas and easy to get back to with ski in / ski out.

Negatives were the fact that (at least when we were there) it was uber French - probabaly 95% of the guests were French, not many of the staff spoke good English and the information that the staff had as to what was going on seemed to be rather hit and miss. It may have been me (or human nature) but it seemed that I was also last to get served at the bar etc being English. Finding anyone ot talk to in English would have been a challenge had we wanted it. The worst aspect was that the ski lessons are very much 'aged' so if the three of us (my daughter 18, my son 12 and I) had gone into lessons then we would have been split up which we didn't want as we are all a similar standard and this is a family ski holiday where we like ot be together - they wouldn't accept us in one group. We are by no means xenophobic but my kids would not have enjoyed spending all day with 95% French kids (nor me adults really) which is nothing against the French and I'd expect them to be similar in reverse. I met some English beginners who had quit lessons after the first day because it was all in French. There was also no guiding. Without the lessons then you'd have to value the accomodation and food highly to make it a good deal.

Minor irritations were the fact that wifi had to be paid for which seemed penny pinching, that there seemed to be nothing to do or to go to outside of the hotel, and that in this resort there were no restaurants up the mountain where Club Med guests could lunch free of charge which I understand there are in other resorts.

Seemed to be great small child care and lessons but we didn't have any direct expercience and may have been very French.

The resort is good and we had a good holiday though. I woud certainly go back to Serre Chevalier but not to Club Med.

Room Tip: Probably as high as possible as even on the top floor we got a bit of 'boom boom' from night...
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  • Stayed December 2012, travelled with family
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3 Thank Mark B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (28)
Date | Rating
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English first
Carmarthen, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
46 reviews
26 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 47 helpful votes
Reviewed 13 January 2013

OK, cards on the table from the start. This was our 4th Club Med skiing holiday, which I suppose proves that we are perfectly happy with the strongly Gallic style, primarily francophone staff and (by British tastes) somewhat quirky entertainment and dining room socialisation which are all part and parcel of the Club Med experience. To my mind these elements add to, rather than detract from, the holiday experience.

Comparing Serre Chevalier with the other Club Med resorts we have visited in France, Italy and Switzerland I have to say that our party were all very impressed. The place was well sited to ski out from for virtually all abilities but I suspect that it would be a bit daunting to ski into for beginners and early intermediates, this should not be a problem as the resort has it's own ski bus arrangements in addition to the main ski bus. The ski lessons were exceptionally good (our instructor was Luca taking a "tranquile" level 3a), these lessons were conducted bilingually with equal use of both French and English and I'm sure that my French improved as much as my skiing.

The resort was spotless, very efficiently run with staff who were attentive without being intrusive. We were there when the place was not full, so cannot comment on how it feels during a very busy time, but it was far from empty and the many people there all appeared to be having a good time. The GO staff are multinational and multilingual, as are the guests, so we never had any significant linguistic difficulties and met and spoke with some very interesting and pleasant people.

The quality of the catering was very high, and the quantity and choice was more than you could wish for.

The Chef de Village (Abdul) takes a great personal interest in the running of the place, he was frequently to be seen "walking the floor" personally checking that all was as it should be and that the guests were happy and being treated well, indeed I can't recall a single day when he did not greet us and enquire as to how our stay was. His work ethic and professionalism was echo'd by the other staff and reinforced by the other senior staff (such as Cristel).

Without wishing to detract from the other Club Med ski resorts we have stayed in, I would have to say that Serre Chevalier is my favourite to date, certainly for skiing in early to mid January. The only problem it has given me is the question as to whether to return next year or whether expand my experience and to ski at other centres, it is very tempting to return.

  • Stayed January 2013, travelled with friends
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Helpful?
3 Thank Dannysdadski
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Essex
Level Contributor
42 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 January 2013

This was our fourth visit to this particular Club Med resort and we really noticed a difference with the new Chef de Village (Abdul) and the glorious head of entertainment (Cristel - tea and biscuits!). The bar staff were unbelievably quick, polite and efficient. The food as always was excellent, and the location of the resort is spot on. If you are looking for an easy skiing holiday where everything is taken care of then this is the answer.

  • Stayed December 2012, travelled with family
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Helpful?
Thank MrsDucklips
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Henley-on-Thames, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
10 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 January 2013 via mobile

My ten yr old son and I have just finished a five day ski trip to Club Med.

I think it is really easy to summarise the Club Med experience - it is effectively like an efficient, uninspiring and fairly average cruise ship holiday on the piste:

- holiday camp feel to it
- Classic middle class, mass market kids--club style tackiness
- Very food-centric...loads of (6 out of 10) all inclusive food available, and what is left one day, is recycled in a slightly different guise the next day
- huge numbers of guests (1000+) so very impersonal
- massively Franco-centric (I love the French but get tired of not being able to speak to people all week)
- almost cultish in that the club med staff sit with you every mealtime and you are encouraged to sit in tables of ten each mealtime with strangers - apparently all part of the "club med village experience" (cringe)

Having said all that, the hotel is efficient, the staff are very friendly and attentive. It is ideally located, ski-in/ski-out and they have a nice attention to detail - such as the open air disco and mini BBQ for returning skiers at lunchtimes.

I personally wouldn't come back because I don't like cruises or holiday camps, I prefer something a little more intimate and better quality (this holiday was booked last minute by a concierge service). But for many, this is a good bet.

In that vein I would massively recommend flexiski courchevel 1850 hotel we stayed in last year - awesome, but more expensive. I guess you get what you pay for.

  • Stayed January 2013
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Helpful?
Thank Dante0078
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bradford, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 1 January 2013

We have just returned from a fantastic week skiing at the club med resort. This is our second trip having been relocated there by completely chance the first time 2 years ago due t the closure of the resort we had originally booked. Our first experience there was fantastic - although we were new to skiing and had no pre conceptions of what a good ski holiday was. The friends with us, who were all veteran skiers were very impressed however. We had no hesitation in making this our destination for our second skiing holiday last week. The staff were extremely friendly and helpful, and the whole experience was well organised and ran smoothly even though the hotel was fully booked for the week..! The skiing was fantastic, and the instructors were very helpful when it came to finding the correct level of class to be in.. They were also very accommodating when my 15 year old daughter asked to transfer into our adults group - finding the teenagers level a little too difficult..! The rooms were basic as you would expect for 3 star accommodation, but well cleaned and well kept. The food was plentiful and very varied. Something to suit all tastes. The entertainment was well organised and added to the overall atmosphere and ambience... We will certainly be returning - hopefully next december...
My only regret was not completing the instructor (ESF) feedback form, as our instructor - Benjamin - (level 2 adults 24th - 28th Dec 2012), was absolutely superb.... He was very academic and taught us methodically step by step how to improve our technique. His choice of piste to suit the lesson was brilliant - thank you Benjamin..!
See you all soon
Simon, Debs, Chess, Elyse

  • Stayed December 2012, travelled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank Simon186408
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
1 review
Reviewed 30 December 2012 via mobile

We have just got back from a fab weeks skiing with club med in Serre Chevalier. This was our 2nd trip to this hotel. The last time being 2 years ago. What a difference the new staff make. This time round we found the GO reps exceptional & really friendly. Plus lots of English speaking reps. (Which definitely helps) The new manager Abdel Osmani went out of his way to make everyone feel welcome. He was up at the crack of dawn & was normally the last one to go to bed. Joining in with the party atmosphere & making sure we all had a good time, and trust me we didn't didn't have that many early nights. Nothing was to much trouble for the team. The new entertainment team including Julien & the English dancer Jeni were fantastic. Patrice the (champagne guy) & his wife Marion were also very helpful. The bar staff & Gina (the kiwi) were also really friendly, helpful & smiley. This was the first week that club med was open & to be fair the shows they put on in the first week were 10 times better than 2 years ago. The last night was dedicated to a kids show. Thumbs up to the GO team they made all the kids feel special & they put on a really good show for the adults.

I have only 2 complaints 1) the ski instructors were basically hopeless 2) the Nero virus's which was ripe 2 years ago may happen again if they're not too careful. This is because when going upstairs to the restaurant although a member of staff was always waiting at the top of the stairs to welcome you in. The problem was they would stand right in front of the hygiene sanitisers. So no one could see the gel. It would be better if they actually squirted the gel on your hands & said bonjour/bonsoir at same time. This would at least stop some of the germs from getting into the hotel. You can't guarantee this but it would certainly help matters & make sure more people are more hygienic when entering the restaurant.

Anyway, we're back to serre chevalier in 5 weeks time but this time a very large group of 20 people will be coming with us. I only hope that that week will be as good as last week.

Well done Club Med you've finally got it right this time with the staff. Don't let these guys get away. So much better than 2 years ago!

Michaella & Russell, Bedfordshire, UK

Stayed December 2012, travelled with friends
Helpful?
Thank Russell H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Winchester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 29 August 2012

We have just returned from a week at Serre Chevalier. The week started off badly when we couldn't get into our rooms until after 6pm, having arrived just before 3pm after a long journey. Reception is like a badly run airport terminal. You queue for 20 mins to be told your room will be ready in 20 mins. More queuing to be told the same thing! This happened for two hours until we finally got the keys. Trekked down to the room with bags etc to find that the room wasn't ready. Full bins, used towels etc. Back to reception to queue again. Same thing. Told it would be 20 minutes. Went to the room again..still not ready. Queue again... the explanation was that the contract with the hotels says the rooms will be ready "a partir de " 3pm which means anytime after 3pm apparently!

Generally the service was pretty poor. If you don't speak French you are very likely to miss out on any activities you would like to try as there is limited English spoken. We were invited for a glass of champagne to welcome us as international guests but we couldn't find the the rep who had invited us. We did find him later but we certainly did not feel that international non French speaking guests were well catered for at all. It makes you appreciate the UK service culture and how it has improved in the last 20 years.

Food is ok but totally self service. This not only means queuing and getting your own food but also clearing up the table before you, so that you can sit down to eat when it is busy! There are very few tables of four, most are table of 8 which you have to share. Horrible food poisoning on the last night which appears from the reviews to be a regular occurrence. I wish we had read the other reviews before booking.

The hotel is huge. Over 1,500 guests we were told and it felt more like 2,000. Very busy and sometimes noisy at night.

However, our kids loved the hotel, particularly the unlimited free coke....enough said.

  • Stayed August 2012, travelled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
4 Thank Mel T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Club Med Serre-Chevalier

Property: Club Med Serre-Chevalier
Address: Le Bez - La-Salle-les-Alpes | Serre-Chevalier, 05240 Briancon, France
Phone Number:
Region: France > Provence-Alpes-Cote d'Azur > Hautes-Alpes > Briancon
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Spa Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 17 Hotels in Briancon
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £££
Hotel Class:3 star — Club Med Serre-Chevalier 3*
Number of rooms: 350
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The resort of Serre-Chevalier is home to the Village, designed as a large hamlet of about fifteen chalets. Its typical rooftops and facades in wood and stone, is in total harmony with the decor. Inside, the spaciousness and warm decoration of the lounges in the style of family rooms create a holiday location. Everyone can thoroughly devote themselves to their favourite activities, whether in the Snow Garden, on the slopes of the ski domain, in the indoor swimming pool or in the Club Med Spa*. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Club Med Serre-Chevalier Hotel
Briançon Club Med
Club Med Briancon

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