Right along the Italy-France border in the Val d’Aosta region in Courmayeur, a destination popular with celebrities, sits the tiny little town of Entrèves. And in this tiny hamlet, is one of my favorite European hotels. Auberge de le Maison, a cozy little alpine chalet with the most gorgeous views any season of the year.
We usually opted for the two-story family room that included a loft for the kids. The bonus was the balcony overlooking either a snow-filled or green grassy meadow, along with views of the Mont Blanc range.
There are cozy little sitting rooms throughout the property. In the wintertime, it’s so great to sit by a warm fire, with a nice cocktail and just connect with people coming and going.
In the evening, the bar sets out a host of snacks and people from all over the world (including my then 7-year-old daughter) gather at the dark wood bar to exchange stories. Val d’Aoste has some of the most interesting foods, a blend of Italian, French and Swiss cuisines. My favorite was always the polenta with sausages.
Just around the corner from La Maison is La Palud, the base station of the Funivie Monte Bianco, the cable car to the Pointe Helbronner of Mont Blanc. I’m terrified of heights so I never made the trek so I was always the photographer.
In the winter, you can ski the famous glacial ski run of the Vallee Blanche and ski from Italy to France. Nearby Courmayeur is also home to one of the big film festivals where Hollywood descends on the region.