Our resort manager Jenny Souter gives an insight into the amazing bespoke experiences on offer at Ski Verbier Exclusive…
We deal with a lot of celebrations at Ski Verbier Exclusive. Big birthdays and wedding anniversaries – we’ve even had a proposal in the past, which was very exciting, and next week we are hosting a wedding! It tends to be a mixture of corporates who want to entertain their clients and families, so it’s quite varied from both a corporate and personal perspective.
The most common special occasions are birthdays, which range from big extravagant celebrations to more intimate ones. We had a big 50th birthday last season in chalet Chouqui – our flagship chalet. It was a full-on Gatsby theme, which really suited the chalet itself because it has that golden-era style to it in the communal areas: lots of dark greens and gold and dark wood that we could spruce up. There were fire breathers and live music to give it that real buzzy ambience and an ice sculpture in the shape of a giant ‘50’ in front of elegant floral displays.
We have a lot of children’s entertainers as well, including a Disney Princess who can come in and sing songs from Frozen. We also get local artists to come in and do watercolour classes and still-life drawing with adults, and arts and crafts with the kids, which is a nice touch especially for people who maybe don’t want to ski. Around Christmas time we have a gentleman in town who has gorgeous St Bernard puppies. He comes to the chalets to show the dogs off and children can do a photoshoot with them in the mountains and take them for walks. That’s quite a nice touch. We can do some pretty spectacular gourmet dining experiences, even on the glacier with oysters, champagne and barbecues, which sounds ridiculous but it has been done! A lot of our chefs have picked up really specialist skills in their careers, so we encourage them to do a themed night once a week in the chalets. That could be a Mexican fiesta, for example, and we can tailor the menu to suit the client, from family sharing nachos to a nine-course tasting menu. Pip O’Neill is our head chef at Chouqui. She lives and breathes the clients and is particularly good at afternoon tea and making spectacular cakes. She’s self-trained, which is quite unusual, but she is an amazing leader and it’s great to have a female head chef.
We do promise that we can deliver but obviously being in the mountains does have its challenges. We need at least a couple of days to arrange something but we really can pull things off last-minute. It’s manic but it can be done! The management team have been in the resort for years so a lot of our friends are suppliers and they’re able to pull these strings. It’s mainly just about having the contacts. Verbier is a very beautiful town but it’s also very small, so you kind of know everyone and we really work together to make things happen.