Review of Schladming

24th August 2014 by suggul 

Went to Schladming in mid-March 2013. Flight into Salzburg Airport, bus to train station and train direct to resort was really cheap and pretty easy transfer.

We stayed at Bella Vista apartments, which we were very pleased with. Location was fine - about 5 minute walk to centre of town and the Planai list base. The apartment was very recently refurbished to a good, modern standard and was bright, spacious and reasonably priced.

The skiing was excellent for our level - comfortable red run skiers. Individual runs were long, uncrowded and interesting - often starting high up in the open before plunging into the trees. Despite it being warm and sunny, the snow conditions were terrific due to the north-facing slopes. Piste grooming was excellent. However, signing was not great - this is the only time we’ve managed to get lost. Runs often criss-crossed and it was not clear which run one had ended up on. The lack of the the piste name/number on the markings at the side of the piste really frustrated us. The other criticism is that runs can become a bit monotonous - most slopes face the same way and offer similar views from on high and look much the same once you’re in the trees.

The WTSS review on the lifts is spot on. On the whole the lift system is superb - lots of modern, fast chairs (some heated), with very few draglifts. However, there are 2 anomalies - the link from Planai to Hochwurzen and the bottom chair at Reiteralm. Both are 2 seater antiquities. Queues were never an issue, but the lifts were long and cold and took absolutely ages to get to their destinations. Seeing as there is no alternative way up the mountain from those 2 bases, it seems crazy that the lifts haven’t been replaced given the terrific infrastructure throughout the rest of the resort and the massive investment for the 2013 FIS World Championships.

The town of Schladming is pleasant, the people were very friendly and all spoke excellent English. We ate out a couple of times and were surprised at the quality of the food, especially at Johann’s - where the food would befit many a fine-dining London restaurant. The scenery of the resort isn’t on par with high-Alpine destinations, but has it’s own cosier beauty - it’s more girl-next-door than supermodel.

We probably wouldn’t go back, unless it were for a weekend (given the short and easy transfers), as the runs are a bit samey, and the entire area can be skied out in 2-3 days.

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