Review of Pila

13th February 2008 by Joanna B. 

We stayed in Pila in early February 2008 and had a very positive experience.

We are 2 snowboarders in our mid-20s with no children - one of us is intermediate and one is a relative beginner. The beginner went to snowboard school (Scuola di Ski di Pila) while the intermediate cruised the blue and red slopes - he found these well-groomed and generally quiet with fast queue-free lifts (no drag lifts!), although weekends are noticeably busier. Some great tree-lined runs and although not hugely extensive in area, enough for a reasonable 5-6 days cruising.

Snowboard school was good with a high ratio of instructors to pupils, but few spoke English well. This novice, nervous following a broken wrist on her first snowboarding holiday 3 years ago, was more-or-less confidently linking turns by day 5, a great achievement for the instructors! However, most of the dialogue was in half-forgotten school French, which wasn’t ideal. This may well be one of the (few) drawbacks of going to a resort which is relatively unvisited by Brits.

Conditions and weather were great, some snow on the first day and then clear sunny skies thereafter, which didn’t seem to affect the slopes adversely - all runs remained open all week. Lots of places on the slopes for lunch, the liveliest time of day in Pila as after 5pm the place suddenly goes very quiet. I suppose a lot of people stay in Aosta, a 20 minute gondola ride down into the valley, which makes for very quiet apres-ski in the village itself.

We stayed in Hotel Printemps and enjoyed their generous and delicious evening buffets. On Friday we went out for dinner to Brasserie Grimod (excellent), which along with Gallagher’s Irish pub seemed to be the only place with any signs of life. However, the village is pleasant and has stunning views across the valley, so we didn’t mind the quiet evenings.

We travelled from Newcastle to Turin with Crystal and were happy with the service we received. Despite the quiet apres-ski we would return to Pila in the future, especially if we had small children as it seems to be well set up for families.

In summary, a lovely, small, very Italian resort with excellent snow and quiet apres-ski. Enjoy!

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