The slopes

  • Extent 4 out of 5
  • Fast lifts 2 out of 5
  • Snow 2 out of 5
  • Queues 3 out of 5
  • Terrain p'ks 3 out of 5
  • Expert 2 out of 5
  • Intermediate 3 out of 5
  • Beginner 3 out of 5
  • Boarder 3 out of 5
  • X-country 4 out of 5
  • Restaurants 3 out of 5
  • Schools 3 out of 5
  • Families 3 out of 5

The resort

  • Resort charm 4 out of 5
  • Convenience 1 out of 5
  • Scenery 3 out of 5
  • Eating out 4 out of 5
  • Apres ski 3 out of 5
  • Off-slope 4 out of 5

Key facts

Resort1050 m
Slopes950-3000 m
Lifts53
Pistes220 km
Price index145

Gstaad

Switzerland

Gstaad Saanen

The upside

  • Traditional village without the towny feel of other fashionable Swiss resorts
  • Good long runs for intermediates
  • Pleasantly uncrowded slopes
  • Lively après-ski scene
  • Wide range of off-slope diversions, including swanky shops

The downside

  • Fragmented slopes served by buses and trains
  • Unreliable snow cover, except on the limited (and distant) Diablerets glacier, although snowmaking covers 60% of the slopes.
  • Few challenges for experts

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News – 2018/19

The 38-year-old gondola from Saanenmöser to Saanersloch has been replaced by a smart new 10-seater gondola.

News – 2017/18

At Glacier 3000 (the Diablerets glacier) a new 8km red run was built from the top down to Reusch (1700m vertical).

The Gstaad spots centre was renovated and includes a fitness centre and a large new spa area.

Summary

Despite an exclusive reputation, Gstaad is an attractive resort with a pleasant traffic-free centre, smart chalet-style hotels and extensive slopes - where anyone could have a relaxing holiday. Most of the slopes are below 2100m and spread out across four main sectors but for those happy to forego convenience and spend time on trains or buses, the area has superb intermediate terrain and adequate progression runs for novices. Snow reliability is an issue, but the Diablerets glacier (Glacier 3000) is 15km away and also covered on the main pass. The largest sector is above Saanenmöser and Schönried, and offers varied terrain for adventurous intermediates. It also makes a cheaper alternative base to Gstaad centre.

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The slopes

  • Extent 4 out of 5
  • Fast lifts 2 out of 5
  • Snow 2 out of 5
  • Queues 3 out of 5
  • Terrain p'ks 3 out of 5
  • Expert 2 out of 5
  • Intermediate 3 out of 5
  • Beginner 3 out of 5
  • Boarder 3 out of 5
  • X-country 4 out of 5
  • Restaurants 3 out of 5
  • Schools 3 out of 5
  • Families 3 out of 5

The resort

  • Resort charm 4 out of 5
  • Convenience 1 out of 5
  • Scenery 3 out of 5
  • Eating out 4 out of 5
  • Apres ski 3 out of 5
  • Off-slope 4 out of 5

Key facts

Resort1050 m
Slopes950-3000 m
Lifts53
Pistes220 km
Price index145