Loving Apartments’ Luxury Collection

Loving Apartments knows how to do luxury – rooftop terraces, grand views, stylish furniture, spas and sophistication. Because when you’re on holiday, you deserve the best.

Many of our incredible locations have stunning luxury collections ranging from chic modernity to classically posh.  I could keep telling you how remarkable these apartments are . . . or I could just show you. The photos speak for themselves.


Georges I        Georges IV

Geroges V        Georges II

The Georges V luxury apartment in Paris is fit for royalty with its crystal chandeliers, French Savonnerie carpets, antique furniture and white marble fireplace.


Loft I       Loft II

Loft III       Loft IV

The Montorgueil Luxe Loft is spacious, light and sleek. Even though the Parisian loft is modern, it has a fascinating history as a renovated printing housed used by the Resistance for printing publications in the 1870’s.


Amsterdam I       Amsterdam II

 Amsterdam III    Amsterdam IV

The Leidseplein Royal Penthouse is urban chic with high gabled ceilings with exposed beams, parquet floors and elegant decor. The luxurious accommodation also includes a deck jacuzzi with a remarkable view of the Leidseplein.


 London I

 London II   London IV

This attractive apartment gives a marvellous view of the London skyline and the iconic Tower Bridge. You won’t be able to top the accommodation’s central city location.


Zermatt I    Zermatt II

Zermatt III   Zermat V

This trendy apartment is open and luminous, providing you a breathtaking view of the landscape. The high ceilings, mod furnishings and glass walls are the very definition of luxury.


Zermatt II     Zermatt III

Zermatt I

This spectacular chalet is all about leisure and relaxation with its sauna and cosy corners to enjoy the striking Swiss back drop.


Barcelona I     Barcelona II

Barcelona III     Barcelona IV

This classically luxurious apartment has ornate trimmings, elegant draperies and handsome wood floors. Complete opulence and Barcelona at its finest.

Discovering Valais

Valais lies in the South-west of Switzerland, stretching 150 km along the Rhone Valley between the Rhone Glacier and Lake Geneva. Valais has an impressive range of landscapes. Within just a few kilometres, some of the highest peaks of the Alps are bumping elbows with almost subtropical areas where almonds and pomegranates are found.

The Rhone Valley dominates the region, but the main skiing resorts and other small villages are in side valleys to the north and south. Some of these resorts include Zermatt, Verbier, Crans-Montana, Saas-Fee and Nendaz. Loving Apartments offers accommodation at each, giving their guests convenience and comfort after a day of winter sports and activities.


Zermatt Final Photo

Zermatt is the most glamorous ski resort you’ll find in the Swiss Alps. The village lies at the foot of the majestic Matterhorn and offers a glorious view of the surrounding peaks. Nestled in a deep valley near the Italian border, Zermatt has become a cosy destination with its romantic cobbled streets, horse-drawn sleighs and quiet corners. You won’t be bothered by the hustle and bustle of traffic because combustion engine transport is not allowed in order to prevent pollution. The atmosphere is instantly welcoming with the fresh Alpine air, one-of-a-kind shops, quality restaurants and traditional chalets. The area’s beauty is simply unsurpassed.

Zermatt Blog Photo

Zermatt is the heart of Swiss winter sports with the highest mountains in Europe. The three main ski areas – the Sunnegga, the Gornergrat and the Klein Matterhorn – soar to altitudes over 3,100 metres with fabulous snow conditions and long runs. The longest, and most recommended, run is from the Klein Matterhorn to Zermatt. The trail covers 13 km of varied terrain. On the way down, skiers will be awed by the white glacial world with sweeping views of Switzerland, Italy and even distant France. These three areas offer skiers of all levels over 250 kilometers of trails. That is a lot of ground to cover, so it’s a good thing that Zermatt has the longest winter ski season in the Alps from late November to the start of May. If slope skiing doesn’t take your interest as much as cross country skiing, there are also cross country skiing routes with the Täsch and Randa trails.

And this is only skiing. We haven’t even begun to scrape the surface of all the other winter sports opportunities.

Photo Credit: dsearls@Flickr.

Photo Credit: dsearls@Flickr.

Snowboarders can find good terrain and a half pipe near Riffelberg and a snowboarding park on the Klein Matterhorn. Winter hiking, snowshoeing and sledding trails are scattered throughout the Zermatt region, and you’ll find hockey, skating and curling in the village.

But Zermatt is more than just winter sports. During the summer season, almost every sport imaginable is offered from mountain biking, to hiking, to golf and tennis.

Since Zermatt is car-free, the most sensible way to travel there is by train. The trip is beautiful because it takes you through the deepest cleft in Switzerland with the highest mountains on either side of you.

Here is some additional information about Zermatt to help in your holiday planning.

Featured Accommodation in Zermatt

Heinz Julen Penthouse Chalet:

This light and chic apartment has 4 bedrooms, sleeping up to 8 people. It has stylish furnishings, a terrace, sauna and gorgeous views of the Swiss landscape.

Zermatt I      Zermatt II

Zermatt III      Zermatt IV


Verbier Final Photo

Verbier is the main ski resort in the four valleys – Switzerland’s largest ski area. It is reputed as being Europe’s premiere off-piste resort with ranging slopes for all skill levels. The resort is popular with weekenders from London and Geneva, giving it a buzzing energy and exciting atmosphere. The village is full of ski and fashion shops, award-winning restaurants and lively bars and nightclubs. The mix of breathtaking scenery, sporting terrain, and nightlife attracts youthful and athletic visitors from all over the world.

Verbie Blog Photo

Now let’s get down to business. Skiing. Verbier is one of the largest lift-linked ski regions in Switzerland with 412 km of well-maintained pistes – 39% for beginners, 44% for intermediates and 17% for advanced skiers. The entire lift system links the resorts of Verbier, La Tzoumaz, Bruson, Nendaz, Veysonnaz and Thyon. If your looking for a thrill off the beaten skiing path, try the daunting vertical drop of 2,000 metres of off-piste skiing from Mont Glacier.

The off-piste opportunities and competitions like the Verbier Ride and O’Neill Xtreme set the skiing standard high, so Verbier attracts top skiers and boarders from all over the world. Don’t let that phase you though. Verbier is suited for all sorts of skiers. Take a look at Verbier’s official website to read additional information on the skiing region.

Featured Accommodation in Verbier

La Toura Apartment:

This 3 bedroom apartment sleeps up to 6 people and has a balcony that gives guests an incredible view of the mountains and valley.

Verbier I      Verbier II


Crans-Montana Final Photo

Crans-Montana is composed of two neighbouring resorts situated on a sun-drenched plateau above the Rhone Valley at 1,500 metres altitude. The twin towns have much to offer visitors all year round. They have a remarkable view of all the mountain peaks from the Matterhorn to Mont Blanc. Crans-Montana offers some of the most extensive Alpine shopping around and is also home to a renowned culture and congress centre. The towns have  been a popular venue for sporting events, especially because of their reputation as a golfing Mecca. The resort also gives visitors the chance to enjoy nature with five swimming lakes and footpaths through the mountain forests. There is literally something for all tastes.

Crans-Montana Blog Photo

Crans-Montana offers skiing at 1,500 metres on the resort’s altitude level and then skiing at 3,000 metres off Plaine-Morte Glacier.  There are 140 km of marked pistes: 17 blue, 20 red and 4 black. The valley descent down the Piste National is particularly popular as the longest run in the region, and advanced skiers can take to the chairlift to La Toule to find a challenge. Crans-Montana is known for having broad carving pistes which means that skiers and snowboarders can use them safely side-by-side. You can enjoy night skiing on some of the pistes, and if you are feeling particularly adventurous, you can organize a torch-lit descent.

In winter, all the golf courses are transformed into havens for cross country skiers and hikers. Mountain bikers will also find a place for themselves with 117 km of marked pistes, two downhill runs and the Kona Bikepark.

If you decide to plan a holiday to Crans-Montana, this additional link may come in handy.

Featured Accommodation in Crans-Montana

Tsaumiau Apartment:

This 6 room accommodation can sleep up to 10 people, so it’s a great location to bring a group of friends for a winter holiday.

Crans-Montana I       Crans-Montana II


Saas-Fee Final Photo

Until the 14th century, Saas was the only community in the Saas Valley. However since then, Saas has grown and transformed into four different villages. One of them became Saas-Fee –  “The Pearl of the Alps.” The village is situated on a plateau above the other three communities – Saas-Grund, Saas Almagell and Saas Balen. Saas-Fee has been declared a “miniature Zermatt” and is a charming Alpine village with its streets lined with chalets. Similar to other mountain villages, it is car free, so you can figure on a peaceful community for your winter holiday. Not to mention, Saas-Fee is encompassed by 13 mountain peaks, so you’ll constantly be surrounded by the dazzling Alpine scenery.

Saas-Fee Blog Photo

Saas-Fee offers several lofty pistes. Some reaching up to 3,600 metres, so you can also be certain of snow. Slopes are also serviced by 95 snow cannons to ensure that you have plenty of the white fluff to make a successful descent. The resort provides 150 km of slopes for skiers of all levels and 4 different snow parks. Getting around the slopes in Saas-Fee is convenient with 22 railways leading to the pistes, including the Metro Alpine that takes people to the world’s highest revolving restaurant.

Saas Fee is also known for favouring winter hikers. The area has 20 km of trails for winter hiking in order for adventurers to admire the beautiful landscape. There are also various toboggan runs in the valley as another alternative to skiing. The longest run is 11 km from Kreuzboden to Saas-Grund and has become a favorite run of the locals.

Take a look at this link for some more information about Saas-Fee.

Featured Accommodation in Saas-Fee


This apartment is modern, chic, and the perfect place to relax after a day out on the slopes.

Allegra I      Allegra II

Allegra III      Allegra IV


Nendaz Final Photo

Nendaz is located on a mountainside overlooking the Rhone Valley. The village originally started as a farming community, but over time it transformed into a winter holiday destination and ski resort area. However, that farming tradition is still evident in remaining cow sheds, barns, grain stores, fruit orchards and the annual alphorn festival. Nendaz is known as being an affordable and family-friendly ski resort. The village is fairly large and is full of chalets and apartments, shops and a variety of bars and restaurants.

Photo Credit: vasile23@Flickr.

Photo Credit: vasile23@Flickr.

Nendaz is situated in the four valleys ski region in Switzerland – along with Verbier, Veysonnaz, La Tsoumaz and Thyon. However, Nendaz is the best for children and beginners with their exceptional nursery slopes and the wide blues on Tracouet. Intermediate skiers will be thrilled with good carving runs from the top of the Alpage, and expert skiers can try their luck on off-pistes routes that the four valleys is known for. There are also back country skiing options that advanced skiers can try, starting with Siviez-Chassoure route and building up to the Tortin Wall, which has been listed as one of the “scariest ski runs in the world.”

Boards may not appreciate the gradient-lacking tracks from one valley to the next, but they will be sure to love the two snowparks that Nendaz offers. There is the Nendaz Snowpark for beginners, and the Burton Progression Park which is geared more towards advanced boarders. Visitors to Nendaz can find alternative winter activities on 12 km of cross-country ski trails, 100 km of winter hiking trails and 40 km of snowshoe routes.

If you would like to plan a holiday in Nendaz, here is some additional information to help.

Featured Accommodation in Nendaz

Les Roches Apartment:

This beautiful and luxurious apartment sleeps up to eight people in 4 bedrooms. The accommodation also includes a sauna, hot tub, children’s play equipment, and a storage room for ski equipment.

Les Roches I      Les Roches II

Les Roches III      Les Roches IV

In case you would like to plan your winter holiday for somewhere else, check out the other regions in Switzerland that Loving Apartments offers accommodation:

Alpes Vaudoises                                                       Bernese Mittelland

Central Switzerland                                                Eastern Switzerland

Freiburg                                                                        Jura

Lake Geneva                                                               Lake Zurich

Mittelbunden                                                             Surselva

Ticino                                                                              Bernese Oberland

Conquering the Slopes: Winter Sports in Zermatt

Zermatt, Switzerland is the closest thing to heaven on earth for winter sports enthusiasts. Quite frankly, Zermatt can even seem like heaven to those who aren’t winter sports enthusiasts with its incredible mountain scenes, especially with the view of the Matterhorn. However, if you are in Zermatt, you might as well hit the slopes and get active in your winter gear.

Photo Credit: kBandara@Flickr.

Photo Credit: kBandara@Flickr.

Skiing and Snowboarding

Photo Credit: dsearls@Flickr.

Photo Credit: dsearls@Flickr.

There are three main ski slope areas in Zermatt: the Sunnegga, the Gornergrat and the Klein Matterhorn. These areas offer skiers of all levels 250 kilometers of trails. If slope skiing doesn’t take your fancy as much as cross country skiing, there are also cross country skiing routes with the Täsch and Randa trails. Terrain and difficulty varies with both trails.

Don’t worry. Zermatt hasn’t forgotten about the snowboarders. Snowboarders can find good terrain and a half pipe near Riffelberg and a snowboarding park on the Klein Matterhorn.

Winter Hiking and Snowshoeing

You’ll encounter breathtaking and beautiful views of Zermatt if you take the time to go out on a winter hike or a snowshoeing excursion. Snowshoeing on the Gornergrat is said to have the most glorious view of the Matterhorn, but there are other gorgeous trails available for trekking as well, including Täsch to Randa, Zermatt to Sunnegga, Rotenboden to Riffelberg and many others. Each of the trails differ in difficulty level, so hikers can find a suitable route for themselves. If you want to take the stress out of choosing and planning your own route, there are numerous winter travelling agencies in Zermatt with which you can hire a guide to lead you for a day hike. Whatever route you choose to explore, you will be guaranteed an awe-inspiring experience.


sledding in Zermatt

Photo Credit: dsearls@Flickr.

Sledding my seem like a cliché winter activity, but it takes on an entirely new meaning in Zermatt. Zermatt offers sledding runs for the young and old with fast steep runs or more mild runs. A fast run can be found on the Rotenboden toboggan trail on the Gornergrat. The route covers 234 metres in 10 minutes. You’ll have to be sure to concentrate on glimpsing the fabulous mountain view as you zip by. There is even a cog train that runs every 10 minutes to bring you back up to the top so that you can save all your energy for the thrilling ride down. If you are looking for a more gentle sledding experience, try out the Randa toboggan run. This route is located in the heart of the village and is especially youngster-friendly with its short, gentle slope.

Ice Sports

Ice sports ranging from skating, to hockey, to curling can all be enjoyed on Zermatt’s ice rinks. A natural ice rink  and two artificial ice rinks can be found in the centre of Zermatt. Admission to the rinks are free from December to February. You’ll just have to pay for skate and equipment rental if you don’t bring your own. If you’d rather watch ice sports instead of participating, the public is welcome to watch as the local ice hockey team, EHC Zermatt, trains.

If you are a bit braver and want to wander out of the rinks, try your hand at ice climbing. Ice climbing takes you through valley gorges, on cliff walls and over frozen waterfalls, allowing to you to see remarkable sights that are usually inaccessible. However, you must be in excellent physical shape, have experience with alpine climbing and have no fear of heights. It is also highly recommended that you have a professional guide accompany you on the climb. A popular area for ice climbing is the Gorner Gorge, with especially dazzling views and glistening ice walls.

Photo Credit: Gabriel GM@Flickr.

Photo Credit: Gabriel GM@Flickr.


> Dana Wolthuizen is studying English and non-profit business at Central College with a passion for travel writing.


A Round Up Of Our Favorite Nightclubs In Our Most Popular Destinations


1. Cova d’en Xoroi Nightclub, Menorca:

If you are looking for a way to close out the summer months with a bang, then this nightclub, set high above sea level in the resort of Cala’n Porter on the south coast of Menorca, is the place to do it. It is considered one of the most impressive clubs throughout the Balearic Islands with its outside terraces that lead to natural caves with intimate seating areas and a dance floor. No matter which night you decide to attend, you are sure to enjoy one of the greatest nights of your life as you’re led by one of the regular DJs. If you’re looking for an evening you’ll never forget, check the events calendar on the website www.covadenxoroi.com, and attend one of the live music performances or a special themed night with an international DJ.

Photto Credit: dgbury @ Flickr.

Photto Credit: dgbury @ Flickr.

The club opens at 11:00 p.m. and closes at 6:00 a.m. (make sure to check the website as times change according to season and weather). The cover charge is 20 Euros which includes an alcoholic drink, and they enforce a smart casual dress code. If you want more information, or want to make a reservation, you can visit the website listed above, email them at cova@covadenxoroi.com, or call at +34971377236. Make sure this is a summer season you won’t soon forget and head to Menorca before the warm days are gone.

2. Space Menorca Nightclub, Menorca:

The summer months are a time for the young to travel, let loose, and really party hard. A new club on the island, Space Menorca, has introduced a new concept of sophisticated nightlife, with the most powerful sound systems, advanced LED technology, and the latest video mapping software. If this new club is trying to unveil a new way to party, then it certainly has the space to do so. It is divided into three areas: an open entrance hall with bar, for you to meet up with your friends before getting lost in the fray; a main club room with dance music, for you to get your groove on; and a large outdoor “chill-out” terrace upstairs with lounge seating and two bars, for you to take a break from dancing and chatting with your friends. There are also VIP zones in the club and upstairs which can be booked beforehand. There are constantly theme nights like Retrospective Sundays, Super Girl Wednesdays, and a different party night every Saturday. Go to the website www.spacemenorca.com to pick the perfect night for you and your friends.

Photo Credit: Abeeeer @ Flickr.

Photo Credit: Abeeeer @ Flickr.

The club is open every night from 12:00 a.m. to 6:00 a.m. and costs 25 Euros to enter, but discount coupons can be found all over the surrounding area (bars, restaurants, hotels, etc.). For more information you can visit the website listed above, email them at info@spacemenorca.com, or call them at 627 802 047. If you and your friends are looking to party in a whole new way, then travel to Menorca and check out this cutting-edge club.


1. Pacha Nightclub, Majorca:

If you and your friends want to go out, but have different tastes in party music, then the Pacha Nightclub in Majorca is the place for you. It is set on Paseo Maritim in Plama, and spread over three floors. It has the usual terraces with wonderful views, a restaurant, and VIP rooms like most clubs. What makes it special is the three separate rooms which each feature a different kind of music with one playing mostly house music for those who like to dance, one playing funk for those who like to “get down” and funky, and another featuring chill-out music for those who need to relax and have a few drinks. The club also features a variety of party nights and exclusive music events. See the website http://www.pachamallorca.es or the dates of these events, and to view the days of regular theme nights like “Pacha Classics” on Mondays. If you wish to make reservations or just want more information, you can also visit the website listed above for contact information. The Pacha Nightclub offers a wide variety, but the summer season is about to pass, so don’t miss their prime events, and head to Majorca for the closing of the season.

Photo Credit: Traveling_Shan @ Flickr.

Photo Credit: Traveling_Shan @ Flickr.


1. The Schneewittchen, Zermatt:

With the winter months just around the corner, it’s time to start preparing for your winter travel. For those of you who aren’t tired out after a day on the slopes, one of the best party clubs in the Alps, is very close by. It is located in the Papper la Pub, which is also a nice place for a drink, and opens at 11:00 p.m. running until 3:30 a.m. Since opening in 2003, it has been the meeting point for locals, season workers, VIPs, ski teachers, ski bummies, and international party people. It is a great place to meet people in the area and make friends with fellow visiting skiers. There is a wide variety of events held here. The most famous of the nights to attend are the Rock ‘n Roll Sundays which feature bands from all over the world. On top of this, the club shows popular DJs and party labels, and has some of the craziest party themes. You can check out the website www.papperlapub.ch/das_schnee.html to see what theme will best suit you, when guest DJs will appear, and the dates of special live performances. Whether you need to fill the time between slope sessions, or are just a party hound, the Schnee or the “snow” is, ironically, one of the hottest spots in the area.


1. Pub Mont Fort, Verbier:

For those skiers who like a cheap drink after they get off the slopes, then a wild party once they have rested up will find the Pub Mont Fort to be a paradise in the snow. This beautiful historic building in the heart of the Swiss Alps is host to many wild nights w/ after skiing parties, live music, half- priced happy hour and much more. On top of this, they have weekly drink promotions, sports on the big-screen, and great food. There are two large bars on both levels, and more importantly, customers can try their luck at the legendary shots bar, where the “shot master” creates a new shot almost every night. As the season approaches, go to the website www.pubmontfort.com to see the upcoming weekly promotions and parties. This place is for a variety of skiers with their delicious and fresh menu, wide variety of drinks, many types of live music, and a never-ending list of party ideas. Come out to Verbier and experience the combination of amazing skiing followed by a night of drinking and fun.

Photo Credit: PGCreativeLtd @ Flickr.

Photo Credit: PGCreativeLtd @ Flickr.

2. The Farm Club, Verbier:

For those skiers and partiers who love the spotlight, there is a nightclub which claims to have the highest profile in the resort. The Farm Club carries a great history, still having the two original owners, and has a great reputation that has yet to be challenge by others in the area. It has seen the likes of David Bowie and Diana Ross, both of whom used to dance the night away with slope workers and ski bums. To preserve this history, the booths, benches, and even support beams have been renovated and replaced. When you dance in this club, you are literally dancing in the same place as European royals and countless celebrities. The clubs chic, sexy interior is home to many events and parties, and should be on the list of any partier headed to the area for the ski season.

The hours for this season have not yet been posted, but last year the club opened at 11:00 p.m. and had no definite closing time. As the season gets closer, check the website www.hotelnevai.com/farm-club for current hours and upcoming events. This club is known as the place to see and be seen, so if you wish to get on the map, or share a drink with a famous celebrity while you talk about the slopes, this is the club to go to.

Final Few Days in Zermatt

Our competition winner Rob, and his friends, enjoy their last few days in Zermatt before packing their bags and saying goodbye to the luxury Chalet Altesse, and Zermatt.

Thursday 2nd Febraury – On Thursday we decided to get a couple of hours in skiing but to take it pretty slow and have our first day exploring the resort by ski. We planned the route early on in the day and hit the slopes for 11am. It was bitterly cold even in and around Zermatt, with temperatures at the Matterhorn reaching a chilling -23! The route we planned was a mixture of red and blue runs with the option of taking a steep black slope half way through, or to take a slightly easier red run to circumvent the (very) fast slope!

Friday 3rd February – On Friday we decided upon a route that would challenge us but that would also give us an opportunity to combine what we saw as the best routes from the rest of the week. We were all feeling confident by this point and were ready for a real challenge. The route we decided upon was to take the Matterhorn express to Riffleberg, the seated ski lift to the base of the Gornergrat and take the Gornergrat train as high as it would take us. It was bitterly cold at the 10,138ft above sea level, but the amazing views of the Matterhorn and the Glacier soon took our minds of the still plummeting temperatures. We ski down a long red run from the Gornergrat, through to Gant, a run we had tried previously but this time we went none stop! By the time we reached Gant, past some of the most breath-taking views I have ever experienced, our legs were burning and we stopped for a well-deserved break. After a quick drink and a chocolate bar we jumped on to the large lift up to Hohtalli, this was quite a long lift ride and gave us time to recuperate before our most challenging run yet.

Hohtalli was at this point the highest we had been (3286m above sea level!). We planned our route back down to Riffleberg, from here we could take a series of red runs back down towards Zermatt and to our front door, and was the challenge we had be aiming for all week. From the top of a mountain none stop to our front door where the cold beers were waiting. Although we did stop a few times along the way (unintentionally, as there were a few tumbles!) We reached three quarters of the way before we had a problem. One of the group took a particularly bad fall and snapped one of his ski poles.  However, having come this far we decided to push on to the bottom, all the while thinking of the log fire and cold beers that we had left waiting for us.

We made it to the Chalet in one piece but decided we hadn’t had our fill of skiing just yet. We jumped back on the lift, back up the mountain and took a route past several mountain bars. We stopped for a bowl of goulash followed by apple strudel (well when in Rome!). After a short stay we skied further, having a few drinks along the way before reaching the chalet once more. We proceeded to celebrate our accomplishments even further before returning our ski gear and heading into town for our last meal in Zermatt.

Thanks to loving apartments for an AMAZING week, you have certainly converted four rugby lads into lifelong skiers!

If Rob has inspired you to take a trip to Zermatt and take advantage of the fantastic snow conditions, then check out the Zermatt apartments available, from budget to luxury.

Après Ski Antics

Rob, our Zermatt competition winner, gives us the lowdown on the resorts’ infamous nightlife.

Wednesday 1st February – Last night me and the lads headed into Zermatt centre for a meal and a few drinks. We decided upon a Swiss restaurant serving all manner of Swiss specialities such as fondue and local meats. The meal was superb; we started with a local style creamy barley soup, followed by a green salad. We had a mix of main courses including a delicious spag bol a perfectly cooked steak but the winner was definitely the broccoli and scallop risotto. We had a few rounds of large beers with the meal to help us get into the mood before heading to a bar. We spotted a busy bar ‘The Papperla pub’, we could see a band setting up and decided to head inside, we soon noticed the band were from Manchester and as fellow Northerners (we all live and work in and around Manchester) we soon got chatting.  The band was great, playing all manner of old and new songs and there was a real sing song atmosphere. It was quite surreal, loudly singing along to Oasis with a group of Swiss couples on one side and a Chilean family on the other. Along with the beer, the music facilitated the conversation and before we knew it we felt like we were in our local.

The pub has four pour your own beers tables, you pay up front at the bar for a certain amount (which you can top up whenever you like!) but the real draw are the televisions dotted around the pub which track the amount each table drinks on a score board!! There is even a league of the last 7 days and last month. As we had an early morning we decided not to get on one of the tables… but still ended up drinking a little too much! We made our way home through the snowy streets and back to the apartment.

Thursday 2nd February – In the morning we got up a little later than planned but we still managed to hit the slopes before lunch. As we have built up our skills and confidence we decided to ski, rather than walk, down to the lift. Its very common to see people skiing up and down the streets, something I still find a little surreal! We headed back up to Riffleberg and had a go on a few of the blue slopes we had been practising on the day before. We all felt confident and amazingly, nobody fell! So we decided to try our first red run, it wasn’t the most challenging red run in Riffleberg, but we had to start somewhere, the run was narrow in parts and had quite a few steep slopes but the most nerve racking part of the run were the camel humps, situated just at the bottom of a steep slope, it took all our newly found skills to keep upright and avoid the many much better skiers than ourselves!

After surviving this run a few more times we decided to ski the red run from Riffleberg to Sonnega. It was a challenging run, with plenty of trees and steep cliffs to avoid! We all reached our destination without incident, even stopping to take pictures along the way. Looking forward to tomorrow!

Here we Go…on the Slopes for the First Time

Sunday 28th January
In the morning we were greeted by Marion, who dutifully showed us the ins and outs of the apartment. From the log fire (with a huge pile of wood for us to use) to the central heating, heated bathroom floors, Jacuzzi bath, flat screen tv (the list really does go on). The apartment is decorated very tastefully, with interesting original artworks, one of which is floor to ceiling, the kitchen is fully stainless steel and the floors are a beautiful dark hard wood. The modern style of the place was offset by rustic features such as the 6 seater wooden dining table and of course, the roaring fire.

The living space is equipped with a big comfy couch, 5 or 6 seater, and a chaise longue which is perched in frontof the fire, something that we all rushed to sit on each time we returned to the apartment! Being on the ground floor, we also had a patio, which was regularly cleared of snow by a friendly local man. There is a table and chairs outside with an electric canopy, to keep the snow from getting n your beer, as you watch ramblers walk through the woods next to the building and skiers zip by (there is an intermediate blue run that comes past the chalet!!).

We proceeded to head into town and rent our skis and poles and we were ready to head to the ski lift, again a matter of minutes away but we decided to take the free bus as we had our hands full and well, it’s free!

We purchased our 5 day lift pass, hopped on the Zermatt express ski lift, which gives you an arial view of the town and mountains. The view is indescribable, it’s like a Christmas card, chalets perched from high in the mountains get bigger as the town becomes a miniature. It’s the first time any of us had done this and for a few moments nobody spoke, we all just looked around and occasionally pointed at the sights around us, not enough to capture the attention of anybody else in the group as their eyes were fixed either on our destination high in the mountain or on the ever shrinking town we had just left. We reached our first change over, Furi, which has a bar and restaurant and also a red ski run back down into Zermatt, along the crystal clear river and past at least 1 busy looking bar.

We hopped off and then walked to the other side of the lift station and jumped on the Riffleberg lift, as we headed higher into the mountain you could feel the excitement. We hopped off at Riffleberg, where there are 2 or three blue runs and a red run back down to Furi, where you can then ski on back to Zermatt. Something we were not ready for as novices but we have our eyes set on that by the end of the week. We made our way to the first run, via the sit on ski lift, another new experience for all of us! As we stood at the top of the slope nodded to each other and started to ski, slowly, down the run. It wasn’t long before we were falling over, accidentally skiing backwards and bumping into each other! By the time we reached the bottom we had worked out a few of the kinks and jumped back on the lift to do it all again!

We tired ourselves out on the slopes and headed back down feeling good but tired. We decided to hit the sauna in the basement of the chalet before the steam room and then back up to the room. We headed back into Zermatt for a quick bite before our introduction to the après ski!

Greetings from Zermatt!!!!

October’s Zermatt competition winner, Rob Cummins, and his 3 friends are currently enjoying their stay in the Swiss ski resort. Read Rob’s blog of his experiences of Zermatt so far.

Saturday 28th Jan – So, me and the boys all met at my house early in the morning packed and ready to go on our lunch time flight. As none of us had EVER skied before, there was a mix of nerves and excitement as the taxi arrived to take us to the airport. We checked our bags in, headed for the bar and ordered a round of beers to calm the nerves…

Once we got in the air it really hit us and we were ready to hit the slopes! We landed in Zurich, ready for the two hour train ride, through Switzerland towards Italy, to Visp. As you would expect from the Swiss, makers of the famous Swiss army knife, everything was precise and ran like clockwork. The train was an immaculate double decker and we managed to find some good seats with a great view. As we trundled along, firstly though Zurich and the towns that lay just on the outskirts we hit the beautiful country side. At this point we realised that the seemingly daunting train journey was going to make the whole experience even more memorable. We changed trains once in Visp and again the Swiss train system was on time to the second, it was only another hour from Visp to Zermatt but now we were in the mountains! A breath taking view the whole way kept us all captivated, pointing out frozen waterfalls and high up chalets along the way.

At this point, still not sure what to expect, we disembarked and our (included with the chalet) electric taxi was waiting for us. There are very few petrol cars in Zermatt, only the rescue services police and ambulances use petrol. The fact there is no petrol obviously means no pollution, coupled with the mountain air we all began to feel good. There was  a beautifully decorated pine tree in the centre of town and the streets were lined with snow and shops selling everything from cuckoo clocks to skis and snowboards. There are horse and cart taxis which also offer tours of the town, with local knowledgeable drivers pointing out good place sto eat and drink and sharing their knowledge of the area and its history.

A short ten minute taxi ride to Chalet Altesse and our first real walk in the snow (good job we all had snow boots!) and we were finally here, the place was stunning, so much so that we all looked at each other with BIG smiles before we finally opened the door. Wow. We explored our ground floor apartment, picked our bedrooms and put the kettle on. The kitchen was fully equipped with high quality appliances, Espresso machine, dish washer, microwave, oven…. you name it. All manner of utensils, cups, plates glasses… we immediately felt at home.

After our long day traveling we decided to hit the bars and a local club, fantastic atmosphere and after a few beers we walked home, all the while laughing in excitement at the week ahead. Bed time for four weary travellers.

Come back tomorrow to hear of Rob’s first experience on the slopes.

The Most Extreme Activities for your European Break

They say that you should do 1 thing a day that scares you. Not only does it build confidence in your abilities, and open your horizons to new experiences, but it will also fill your memories with exciting events to relay to others for years to come. Travelling and new experiences, come hand-in-hand, however many activities that travellers dabble in are often of a more extreme nature…

Nowadays, it’s almost normal practice to venture to new destinations and throw yourself out of a plane, or to entrap yourself in a cage while being circled by the ocean’s most feared creature. There is something incredible, and addictive about the adrenaline rush you get by doing something that is completely alien to your mind, body and soul. Crazy, but true.

Some of the most popular European destinations offer activities that some may consider wild and reckless, while others perceive as daring and adventurous. Often involving tremendous heights and lightening speeds – extreme activities often provide some of the best views of your destination, if your concentration allows it!

If you’re looking for some action for your city break or European tour, then check out our favourite most exhilarating extreme activities around Europe – sure to get your pulse racing.

Base Flying in Berlin
Forget visiting Berlin’s TV Tower for spectacular views of the city. Base flying off the Park Inn Hotel offers a great vantage point to observe this amazing city, and also provides a quick descent back to down to Earth again. Standing tall at 125m, the Park Inn Hotel is the initial launch pad that you propel yourself off, almost reaching free fall speeds, before your safety rope halts your descent. A serious adrenaline rush, and a must for bungee and skydiving fanatics, base flying is available from April through to November and costs €79.

Paragliding in Zermatt
There is no better way to appreciate the sheer beauty of a mountain range than with a bird’s eye view, and paragliding in Zermatt offers just that. Soaring over the spectacular alpine scenery, without the obstruction of windows, or the interference of engine noise, means you can appreciate the peace and tranquility, while your tandem partner guides you gentle back to land. Prices vary depending on the operator, but are around €150 for a 20-30 minute flight.

Bungee Jumping in London
Relish the spectacular sight of London’s iconic cityscape, moments before plummeting 160ft. London’s O2 Arena gives thrill seekers the opportunity to reach new heights, without even having to step foot on the London Eye, or Tower 42. The bungee launch pad is located in the venue’s car park; with the River Thames and Canary Wharf just a stone’s throw away. Make your trip to London a truly memorable and exhilarating experience. Prices are around €94 for a single jump.

Skydiving in Prague
Prague is a popular destination for group travellers, visiting on stag and hen weekends, birthday and family gatherings. An extreme activity, such as skydiving, can spice up even the most already extravagant of trips, and will make your group holiday one to remember. Skydiving is an invigorating activity, providing breath-taking views, and a feeling of absolute accomplishment – once you’ve landed safely on land. Skydiving within a group is the best scenario, as not only do you get to share this incredible experience with your loved ones, but it’s also harder to chicken out when all of your friends have already hurled themselves out of the plane! The ridicule would be never-ending… Prices vary depending on the operator, but are around €146 per jump, with reductions for group bookings.

Whether you’re looking to view Berlin from a completely different view point, or get the most amazing views of Zermatt’s spectacular Matterhorn, book your holiday apartments well in advance to avoid disappointment.

Calling All Bloggers

Are you as passionate about travelling and exploring new adventures as we are? Do you want to write about places that excite and interest you whilst getting paid for doing as such? If so, we’re calling on you to share your experiences and love of travelling and to write articles for the blogs section of our website. It doesn’t matter if it’s your favourite landmark, the best restaurants to dine at or an undiscovered gem; if it interests us we’ll post your article and give you money for doing so.

However you approach the blog is completely up to you; it can be in the form of a countdown list on your favourite shopping destinations or simply a tale from your experiences of travelling. However, the subject must be focused on one of our destinations.

These are:

How much we pay you for your article depends on the length. For 300 word articles we pay £10, and for 500 word articles we pay £15. If you’re a keen writer and want to share your experiences with a larger audience, e-mail us at info@lovingapartments.com and if we like what we read, we’ll post your article in our blogs section in due course.

For Terms and Conditions, please click here.

Good luck and get writing!