Ski de Luxe
A vacation home is a luxury most people dream about. While many nurture visions of lakefront cabins and beach bungalows, others imagine a cozy, snowy hideaway—the ski chalet. We pulled together some of the most lavish, modern mountaintop retreats we could find to get you daydreaming about a hot chocolate by the fire after a long day on the slopes.
Four-Season Fantasy in Japan
Serving as both a winter and summer home, this ski chalet combines modern with enough rustic to maintain a woodsy feel. Plenty of windows and an open floor plan allow for breathtaking views from most anywhere in the house. Our favorite touch? The heated bathroom floors.
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Compact Swiss Contemporary
An exposed timber frame sounds traditional, but this up-to-the-minute ski retreat is anything but. The compact 590-square-foot space is the antithesis of a grand ski chalet, and the well-lit, sparse interiors make for a bright environment. The size and layout make it possible to heat the home using just a small wood-burning stove.
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Although confined by local restrictions, the architect of this alpine ski home was able to create a sustainable structure with a modern envelope. Despite its contemporary appearance, the house fits in comfortably with its picturesque surroundings, thanks in part to a design that incorporates stone and wooden columns that take cues from local architecture. Rainwater collection and thermal isolation contribute to the building's green credentials.
Skiers' Haven Near Toronto
A modern-day chalet, Maison Glissade employs a cantilevered second floor that includes an outdoor seating area for warmer days or for stargazing on chilly nights. The open floor plan of the main living space allows for large family gatherings.
Sugar Bowl Residence
Transformation in Aspen
The renovation of this classic ski chalet allowed for a modern update to both the interiors and exterior. The use of recycled and natural materials helps the home blend in with its surroundings, while solar collectors fuel power and hot water. We particularly like the small section of green wall in the dining room, which brings a little life to wintery surroundings.
Comfy Quarters in Quebec
La Luge, a 1,300-square-foot winter retreat in Canada's Laurentian Mountains, makes the most of its compact size with an open floor plan, expansive window walls, and warm wood interiors. Amenities include a flexibly furnished bunk room to accommodate a crowd of vacationers, and a huge spa-like bathroom to get away from them. If you like what you see, you can book a stay and experience this contemporary ski chalet yourself.
Truly Fab Prefab
The Wee Ski Chalet
Others may be seeking white on the nearby slopes, but the homeowners of the Wee Ski Chalet, in Colorado, had green in mind when they set out to construct their winter getaway. The near-net-zero house utilizes passive solar siting and wheatboard interiors, while concrete floors inside retain thermal energy and a photovoltaic array provides power.
Related: House Tours—Hudson Passive Project
If you're interested in more about unusual homes, consider:
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