24 Hours at Four Seasons Hotel Megève
UPDATE: Unfortunately there was a major fire breaking out at the property only a few weeks after my stay. While the Four Seasons Hotel remains closed for renovations, you can still stay at Les Chalets du Mont d'Arbois Megeve, a Four Seasons Hotel - one of the most unique Four Seasons in the world from my point of view.
Starting into 2019 with three Four Seasons properties is indeed a great honor. After checking out the latest addition in London (Four Seasons Ten Trinity Square), I was able to visit the property in Geneva followed by the first-ever Four Seasons ski hotel in Europe. Being situated in Lausanne for three years, I have to admit that I was keen on staying at this special Four Seasons Hotel in Megeve from the moment they opened the doors. This season it was actually time for me to go to Megeve for the very first time and what better reason than staying at the town’s number one place to stay. A two-hour drive lead me to the entrance of the hotel where I was taken care of my car and luggage while I was shown the way to the lobby. Check-in was extremely friendly and they made the impression that they knew exactly who was coming in terms of preparation. There’s nothing worse than a hotel not prepared for its guests (unfortunately it happens too regularly still) so I appreciate a flawless first impression as at the Four Seasons Megeve. Then came the first wow moment.
I was booked a Junior Suite King Bed however they had a look onto upgrade possibilities and informed me they could score an even bigger option for me at check-in which I found great to hear. Being excited about the “bigger option” I was heading towards the elevator with the lady from the front desk. We went down one floor and turned right. While I normally tend to avoid rooms below the lobby and especially next to the elevators, is a brand new building there was absolutely no issue and it felt as peaceful as in a private chalet out on the slopes. When I opened the massive wood door, I was welcomed by a spacious entrée with a beautiful sideboard, wardrobe for coats as well as a stunningly modern bathroom that later turned out to be only the guest toilet with the second shower. Moving forward I was standing in the stunning living room with a dining table for four, huge sofa with an armchair, fireplace with the chicest leather accessories I have seen in a hotel plus a small working corner with desk, chair and power sockets – all flooded with daylight. The entire living room was facing the terrace which had a few relaxing chairs and was overlooking the town and valley.
Well, it’s not that this amazing upgrade would be incredible enough. It wouldn’t be the Four Seasons if they would not wow me at least once. Of course, the welcome wasn’t done yet and so I found the entire dining table full of amenities. A bottle of champagne by Barons de Rothschild Vintage branded with the hotel’s opening date in addition to a vast fruit platter, a homemade special cake that wasn’t full of chocolate (I once said I don’t like full chocolate cakes) as well as a chocolate bar by the Michelin-starred restaurant upstairs. The two bottles of water came along as the most usual amenity as did the handwritten welcome letter. From my point of view, a welcome worth 10/10 – just as I would expect it from one of the world’s best hotel group. It took quite a while until I was able to continue the tour but at some point, I was wondering what else was to follow in that amazing One-Bedroom Suite. I walked into the bedroom whose center was the heavenly Four Seasons Bed with these unique square branded pillows (still waiting for them to provide these on their online shop so I can get one for my home as well). Furthermore, there were two bedside tables with expensive lamps and light switches next to the bed, a make-up table in front of the window as well as an armchair in front of the bed to put the weekender bag.
Looking for the bathroom, I had to pass what seemed like a walk-in wardrobe (or more matching walk-through wardrobe) with plenty of storage space, luggage rack, selection of shoe shine amenities, bathrobes, and hairdryer. Generally, housekeeping was doing a really good job and I really loved the complimentary shoe shine service which was the best I have experienced in a luxury hotel. Unfortunately, I had to call the front desk the next day to return me my shoes and jacket – would have been nice to have both delivered while I was at breakfast. I finally reached the end of this one-bedroom suite when I entered the spacious bathroom. Equipped with double vanities, en-mirror television, bathtub with chic towel warmer, separate toilet with wooden walls as well as a marble walk-in shower with beautiful mosaic tiles. While the entire suite was brand new and fit perfectly to the new Four Seasons identity, the bathroom was the one thing that actually best matches the Megeve theme with the wooden ceiling and walls as well as the black stone. Toiletries by Parisian brand Codage came in generous 75ml bottles and I really liked the smell as it also fitted the alpine theme. Obviously, for a perfect Four Seasons property, they provided two bath towels per person and turn-down service was done in a perfect way at the right time (after 8 pm).
It took quite a while until I was done with inspecting the room and enjoying this beautiful interior design. However, I wanted to see the spa at least before the dinner so I went downstairs to the brand new La Prairie Spa and actually the biggest hotel spa in the French Alps. Since I didn’t get an introduction to the spa, I took the wrong way and found myself in the pretty treatment are of the spa instead of the pool. This way I found out that they also sell Bamford products next to the classic La Prairie products they use in the treatments. A friendly lady from the spa was so kind and showed me the way to the changing rooms and the actual pool. Both changing rooms (male and female) are exactly the same and offer a bright interior design with a steam room, massive showers and plenty of toiletries. On the way to the pool, I stopped at the spacious and state-of-the-art gym with only TechnoGym equipment & Evian water. Once I actually made it to the pool, I got distracted by the stunning vistas and the amazing interior design that I started dreaming and immediately stepped into the water basin with the slippers (and I wasn’t the only one). I actually like the idea of such basins so that the feet are clean when you enter the pool area.
At this point, I would need to mention that the pool is the main highlight of the spa with a really well done interior design of white colors and lots of marble and mosaics. While there is no Jacuzzi or hot pool in addition to the main pool, they did set up a complimentary self-service bar which is the first of its kind I have seen in Europe with a coffee machine, biscuits, sparkling and still water as well as some juices and nuts. I liked the idea as you may spend a few hours there in the afternoon and some might seek for a coffee with something sweet. I really liked the temperature and size of the pool especially since you can swim lengths or just enjoy the whirlpool functions. There is access to the outdoor pool which has the same temperature but is a bit bigger and I have to admit it felt amazing swimming in the heated outdoor pool while the snowflakes were dropping in my face and I was enjoying the beautiful landscape around the Four Seasons Megeve. All in all, the spa not being too vast, it is the absolutely perfect size for a wellness getaway combined with skiing in winter or outdoor safaris in summer. Especially the facilities are great in the spa and the pool making it convenient to warm up after a day on the slopes.
For me, it was time to change and get ready for my culinary exploration at the hotel’s Japanese Restaurant Kaito. Thanks to the Four Seasons App on my mobile, I could ask the housekeeping staff to do the turndown service at 8 pm which is the time I had the reservation at the restaurant. They actually showed up on time when I left the room and once I asked for a guest product, they delivered it within 5 minutes which was another huge plus. Four Seasons did an incredible job over the last few years in reinventing their bedding experience. I mean they already had great beds (remember my first time at FS in Budapest almost more than 12 years ago) but now they are just perfection and stand out from Ritz Carlton, Aman, and all the other upscale hotel chains. Just a few selective boutique hotels can compete with that one bed. Fresh as a baby I woke up when the first sun rays made their way into my face on that Thursday morning. And I was so ready for a real Four Seasons breakfast.
Not sure about if I can actually brand their first meal of the day like I did just now but with that service from the first moment of the day, every day can just get even better like the one before. The staff realized I was on my own and offered me a magazine and newspaper in addition to the a la carte menu. Even though they have a buffet with very high-quality products and huge bread selection, they offer egg dishes at no extra cost. I went for Eggs Benedict which was done in a pretty amazing way and besides the fact that they did not refill my orange juice or ask for a second coffee, the experience was flawless. Of course one can realize we are in French when they offer the most amazing desserts for breakfast and you don’t feel guilty when taking a “pain au chocolat” and realize it is the best you have ever had.
I requested a late check out prior to the stay and was confirmed it the night before which enabled me to use the spa for a bit longer and enjoy the luxurious suite. Having talked about quite half of what Four Seasons Megeve actually has to offer (there is a stunning wine cellar & more amazing bar with the two-Michelin starred 1920 restaurant, they have ski-in & ski-out from an upscale ski room plus a shop to buy any ski clothes), I came to the conclusion that this is the best-branded ski hotel in entire Europe! You simply cannot compare a Four Seasons to the other family-run luxury ski hotels (due to too many differences) so that’s why it gets the European pole position of all ski hotels managed by a luxury hotel group. Would I return? Absolutely, and next time I will a) stay for a bit longer and b) also check out the nearby “Le Chalet du Mont d’Arbois” (also owned by the Rothschild Family) and currently turned into a Four Seasons as well.
Disclaimer: We were guests of Four Seasons Hotel Megève for editorial purposes. Opinions are our own as usual and have not been influenced.