Meribel Alps Ski Property
Located deep in the heart of the Alps, in a dramatic landscape famed for its skiing, lies the picturesque resort of Meribel, and a host of beautiful chalet style buildings strung out across snow covered mountainsides and alpine villages. Meribel ski property for sale offers a unique opportunity to buy into one of France’s premier Alpine resorts, offering the best in facilities and pistes while still retaining the picture-postcard look of the traditional Alpine village amid the breathtaking snow capped mountains of the Alps.
Meribel is situated in the Savoie region of France in an area known as the ‘Trois Vallees’, or ‘Three Valleys’. As the name would suggest, this extensive area, famed for its skiing, consists of three roughly parallel valleys, the central one of which contains the resort of Meribel and offers a wide range of Meribel ski property for sale . The Three Valleys is the largest ski area in the world, consisting of 600km of slopes set amid breathtaking scenery. The Courchevel valley and Val Thorens are situated either side of the Les Allues valley where beautiful Meribel ski property for sale can be found. Buying here gives a central position in the area, and therefore an excellent base to explore the whole of the Three Valleys with its huge variety of ski runs and facilities.
The Three Valleys consists of eight major ski resorts. Meribel ski property for sale has excellent links to all the areas of the Three Valleys, with extensive and modern systems of ski lifts, cable cars and gondola lifts which offer panoramic views across the spectacular snowscapes. Skiing throughout the Meribel area is always of the highest quality, thanks to the natural terrain, the regular snowfalls and the amazing number of snow cannons. All this means that Meribel ski property for sale guarantees winter fun, whether using your home as a base to explore the whole of the Three Valleys, or enjoying the Les Allues valley.
Meribel ski chalet property for sale is a unique opportunity to buy into an area which seamlessly blends a wealth of facilities with the natural beauty of the alpine landscape. Unlike many other resorts, Meribel retains its alpine village feel and, despite the popularity of the local ski runs, much of the local atmosphere remains, with traditional, picturesque villages built entirely in the traditional styles of stone and wood-clad chalets. Unlike other resorts, Meribel ski property for sale has not succumbed to the temptation of high-rise buildings or facilities built at the expense of beauty, and instead retains the sleepy atmosphere of the alpine village.
Meribel consists of two main resorts, Meribel and Meribel-Mottaret, as well as a number of small, traditional villages, all of which have Meribel ski chalet property for sale. The feel of the resort is decidedly British, and was, in fact, founded by a British colonel, Peter Lindsay, in 1938 and has long been appreciated by the discerning British skier.
Meribel, the largest of the ‘villages’ within the resort has much Meribel ski chalet property and apartments for sale and the greatest selection of après-ski bars and restaurants. The atmosphere of a bustling market town is retained with the bi-weekly market held amid the snowy. Around the lively centre are the areas of Mussillon, a favourite with the British, upmarket Belvedere, and Altiport, a quieter wooded area of Meribel. Meribel property for sale can be found throughout these areas. Nearby Rond-Point, Le Plateau, Altitude 1600 and Morel are a little further from the centre of Meribel and a little higher in altitude, but are all easily reached by a short bus ride. Each area with Meribel ski property for sale has its own unique charm and a host of entertainment venues and facilities.
Further up the valley is the village of Mottaret, which also has a selection of beautiful property for sale. This area was developed in the 1970s but retains its ‘alpine village’ feel with traditional wooden chalets beautifully blending into the landscape, despite its more modern look. Mottaret is quieter than Meribel, but still has a wide variety of bars and restaurants and excellent transport links to the other areas of the valley. In fact, Mottaret even has its own lift-pass and, from its slightly higher altitude, is perfectly positioned for exploring the whole Three Valleys area. Meribel ski property for sale in Mottaret is not isolated, with Meribel only a short ski away, or short bus ride on the free shuttle service.
Meribel Village lies on the road into the Courchevel valley towards the town of La Tania, built for the competitors of the 1992 Winter Olympics. This is a small hamlet with only a few restaurants, a supermarket and a baker, but more than makes up for its lack of facilities with its beauty and tranquillity amid the great peaks of the Alps. Meribel ski property for sale located here is generally set amid peaceful snow covered landscapes and a seeming other world away from the bustle of Meribel centre.
The most traditional of all the villages is the charming village of Les Allues, which gives its name to the valley. Though it has several restaurants of its own and a well-stocked supermarket, a regular bus service runs to the centre of Meribel and the Olympe gondola serves as a direct route to the heart of Meribel’s ski area.
In addition to these links, the transport through the Meribel areas where Meribel property for sale can be found is both modern and extensive. There are in total 15 gondola lifts and 19 chairlifts serving the valley, and there are excellent transport systems to the neighbouring areas of the Three Valleys, making Meribel property for sale an excellent base from which to explore the whole of the Three Valleys resort. Buying a Meribel ski property is the perfect way to explore the numerous slopes, ranging from tree-lined green runs that are ideal for beginners around Altiport, to teeth-clenching black runs on the western side of the valley, located near Meribel’s two snowparks which are open to snowboarders and skiers alike and contain exhilarating jumps, half-pipes and so on. There is extensive tuition available throughout the resort. Tuition and sit-skis are available for disabled skiers, and there are special classes and tuition available for younger skiers. While adults enjoy the snow covered peaks, parents can be certain that children are safe either under expert specialist tuition or in the numerous crèches and children’s. Guides are also available, and these are recommended before travelling off-piste to explore the breathtaking scenery and untouched snow away from the bustle of the slopes.
Cross country skiing is also popular within the Three Valleys, with 33km of trails in the mountains surrounding our Meribel ski property for sale and an additional 90km around Meribel, Courchevel and La Tania. The trails are free to use, and take in some of the most dramatic and picturesque views of the Alps.
Away from the slopes, Meribel ski property for sale offers a chance to enjoy a wealth of other sports and activities. Offered in the immediate vicinity of much of our Meribel ski property for sale are activities such as hiking along well-planned trails that capture the best of the majestic mountain landscapes, snow-shoeing, and even husky-sledding. The nearby La Chaudanne Olympic Park contains a wide choice of activities including a massive ice-rink and a 25m swimming pool complete with flumes, Jacuzzi and sauna.
After a hard day on the slopes, Meribel also offers a wide range of less active pastimes. As it is so close to the stylish and luxurious resort of Courchevel, Meribel offers numerous spa and beauty treatments. There is also a bowling alley and a cinema showing English language films, and an extensive range of shops and boutiques selling everything from designer clothes to ski accesories. Of course, no apres-ski would be complete without good food and wine, and located near to Meribel ski property for sale is a huge choice of bars and restaurants, often with breathtaking views across the snow-covered mountains. Year round Meribel plays host to many festivals and sporting. These are diverse, from traditional local village festivals to the exclusive ‘Advertising Film Festival’. Some of the best known sporting events held in the valley include the winter ‘Dogsled Race’ in the forests surrounding Altiport and the Great Britain National Ski Championships. In the summer, Meribel hosts the Three Valleys Mountain Bike Competition and the prestigious Drive des Groumets Golf Competition. Perhaps most surprisingly is an excellent 18-hole golf course in Altiport, offering a challenging round of golf against the spectacular backdrop of the ever-changing alpine landscape. The summer months also offer the opportunity for hot-air ballooning, gliding gracefully over the alpine forests where deer roam free and the picturesque villages with Meribel property for sale. Rock climbing is also popular in the summer months, with climbs suited for all ages and experience levels.
The Three Valleys are easily accessible from the UK, either by car, train, or aeroplane. The Eurostar runs a direct service to the Alps, or to Paris allowing an opportunity to stop over in the world’s most romantic city. There are regular flights from the UK on a number of airlines, landing at the nearby airports of Chambery, Grenoble and Geneva where transport to your Meribel ski property is straightforward either by car, coach or train. In addition, Meribel’s Altiport allows light aircraft and private jets, and there is also a direct coach service from London during the ski season.
Meribel ski property for sale offers an excellent investment opportunity, with high rentals guaranteed throughout the ski season and, with the British feel of Meribel, holiday rentals are often snapped up by the British wanting to enjoy the excellent pistes.
Buying Meribel ski property for sale
This is a fairly easy process, but does vary a little dependent on the type of Meribel ski chalet property or apartment for sale you buy. There are no restrictions on foreign ownership, but Capital Gains tax is payable on sales of second homes owned for less than two years. This may be up to 33% of the gain, but reduces with length of ownership. For a regular freehold residential property such as a Meribel ski property, an agreement to buy is negotiated between the buyer and seller and an initial contract is drawn up by a compulsory notary, which binds both parties. At this point 10% of the purchase price is required as a deposit, which remains held in a special account until completion of the sale when it will no longer be open to offers from other parties. This contract is known as a bilateral agreement, or compromis de vente. When the final contract is signed, the deeds pass to the buyer and the land is registered. The full balance of the purchase price of the Meribel ski property for sale is then paid to the notary, who passes it to the vendor. The notary’s fee is typically around 3%, plus transfer tax at less than 1% for new properties, rising to around 7.5% and registration fees at approximately 6%.
Guide to the French Buying Process
1. Signing the Agreement (Compris)
On finding a property you wish to purchase you will need to negotiate the terms, price and conditions of the sale with the owner. The next step, once you are in agreement, is to sign the preliminary contract (Compromis de Vente). This is a legal document and after ten days will be binding on both parties. Rules change frequently in France and it is best to consult with your notary about when this period starts. Generally the compris will be signed in France with the Agent. Variants can be included in the compris, for example an Acte (clause) can be added if the name or names to go on the title deed have not been finalised. If a mortgage will be required to purchase the property, the details for this, including the name of the mortgage company, must be on the compris.
2. Paying the Deposit
Generally the deposit will be 10% of the agreed purchase price. This will normally be paid to the notaire. There are exceptions to this, if the agent holds a carte professionelle, is bonded and fully registered then you may pay them, but do not hand over the deposit to anyone else. If for some reason the purchase does not go through, for example, if you write to the notaire and the agent that you do not wish to go continue with the purchase before the contract is binding (within seven days of signing the compris), then your deposit would be repaid. This would also apply if a condition had not been met, or the mayor or S.A.F.E.R. (a government agency that has the right of first purchase on most rural property that comes onto the market in France) could oblige the purchaser to give way. If you decide after the seven days 'cooling off' period that you do not wish to complete the purchase and pull out of the sale you would lose your deposit. If however the vendor pulls out of the sale then you will receive your deposit back plus the same amount from the vendor.
3. On Completion
Generally it will take around two or three months to complete the purchase. During this time the balance of the purchase money must be paid into the account of the notaire, this must be done well ahead of the completion date. The notaire will prepare the documents, check that the deed of sale (Acte de Vente) is in order and have the legal title ready to be signed over. It is possible to have someone sign on your behalf if you give them power of attorney. An interpreter may be of use at this point if your French is not very good and many Notaires will suggest (or insist) that an interpreter is with you.
IMPORTANT - Disclaimer :
All information provided is believed to be current and provided free of charge. No liability can be accepted for the reliability of the information and statements made as this is obtained from 3rd parties. We always recommend you take legal advice from a fully qualified Lawyer or Notary before buying a property overseas.
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