It has been a long time since we have skied Sauze D'Oulx - we skied here in January 2003! At the time, we lived in Ireland and booked the ski trip through Panorama Tours in Bray, Ireland. Young, married, and without kids, we were excited to ski in Italy for the first time.
This was a time before smart phones, and we had a film camera to record our trip. Ireland still had (gasp!) dial-up internet at the time!
We stayed at Hotel La Fontaine at the bottom of the Jouvenceaux Sportinia lift. The hotel was ski-in, ski-out and offered wonderful food on a half-board basis. For Americans, this means breakfast and dinner were included. We paid for our own lunch in town.
The hotel room had a gorgeous balcony, a double bed, and full en-suite bathroom. Breakfast included fresh croissants, fresh fruit, and more each morning. Dinner was excellent and we purchased a bottle of hand-labeled local chianti. I still regret not buying an extra bottle to take home with us! The hotel has a quiet vibe and is definitely not a party site, which suited us just fine. The location is absolutely wonderful - you can ski over to the Jouvenceaux lift, walk through Jouvenceaux town, or hike up the hill into West Sauze D'Oulx.
In addition to walking, a shuttle bus is provided to access the connecting towns of the ski area. We took advantage of this occasionally, though preferred to walk most of the time. Both towns have incredible architecture, with Jouvenceaux having more traditional buildings than Sauze.
The Chapel of Saint Anthony has beautiful murals and is located in Jouvenceaux. This chapel is estimated to be from the late 15th century - Italy is so full of history that you find it at every turn in the village.
Besides the architecture, the food is absolutely incredible. Located in the Italian Alps in the Via Lattea (Milky Way) ski area, it is possible to ski all the way to Montgenevre in France. There are more than 250 miles of terrain connected by the lifts - we could have skied the entire area with our lift tickets.
At the time, I was a beginner-intermediate skier and skied mostly the red runs at Sauze D'Oulx. Dennis skied reds and blacks. Sauze is known for its plethora of red runs, perfect for cruising down the mountain. The snow was wonderful and well-groomed, and the runs were long.
Since we were with a ski tour company, we opted to take a couple of excursions. One was a 15-course dinner event in Jouvenceaux. The second was my all-time favorite and bucket-list activity: skiing down the mountain at the end of the night with torches.
Participating in this event was fun, and beautiful. The excursion included dinner, bum-boarding down a slope, and ended with the torch ski once the sun had set. It was a thoroughly enjoyable trip!
The mountain stats are incredible here, as the ski area is so vast one cannot do it all in a single trip!
400 km (98,842.2 acres) for the entire Via Lattea
5 km (3.1 miles), Sauze D'Oulx
Number of Lifts:
69, including gondolas, high speed quads, and T-bars.
While we visited the resort quite some time ago, we would not hesitate to return. Skiing in Italy offers the best of every possible option: incredible runs, gorgeous views, and food so amazing I could not get enough of it!