It’s Friday, 5pm, time to hit the road from Geneva to Saint Gervais-les-Bains. An hour and a few minutes later, I am parking my car in a tiny parking lot, 5 minutes away from the village. Because it’s winter, the last minutes of my trip are spent on a snow quad, driven by the concierge and available whenever needed. Final destination: Chalet F’Net, a hidden treasure near Mont Blanc in France, surrounded by a private woodland. In summer, you can walk the 400m from the parking lot to reach the chalet.
You can feel the magic of this place as soon as you arrive. No wi-fi. No need to. I mean it.
Listening to the chimney crackle, I cuddle up by the wood fire and contemplate how beautifully the chalet is decorated. Two double bedrooms, one of which, is a master bedroom suite, are available, in case you’d like to come with friends or your family. I went looking for a romantic and unusual getaway and I found what I needed to disconnect… and reconnect with nature (myself?).
Anjana and David designed (and actually restored) this place for nature lovers. It’s a haven of peace. Everything seems so relative seen from above. And the Chalet F’Net looks so close to the sky. The owners are what I like to call “design adventurers”: they first choose a bucolic setting, then develop a concept under the name chillderness. This chalet, with its authentic decor – old world wood and furs – is their latest project. The concept chillderness gave already birth to a contemporary restored Welsh mountain barn – the red kite barn – and the red kite tree tents in the UK. Lucky for us the Chalet is so close to Geneva.
On demand, Savoyard specialties can be cooked right under your nose in a spacious and modern kitchen and served on a Big wooden table. While savouring my tartiflette and the freshness of my salad, time looses its meaning. The snow is shining, I can see it from where I sit in the living-room, and here I am, ready for a night walk, deep into the white forest. The air is so pure, the surroundings are enchanting. A perfect way to digest as well.
Back in my new home sweet home, I feel invigorated. My room is upstairs, under the roof. It smells of a wooden fire. There is a free-standing copper bath in the Chalet but maybe you would want to go (outside) for the wood-clad hot tub!
Saint Gervais-les-Bains is a 5-minute drive from the Chalet F’Net; may I suggest that you stop by the Maison des Alpes to enjoy a few local products. Taste the smoked raclette, a Big treat. The sweet note: chocolate and fresh raspberry moelleux, homemade of course.
During my stay at the Chalet F’Net, the nights were always sweet. Waking up was also a pleasure. The bedding is of an incredible comfort. Silence felt like freedom. Nature finally has a lot to say when you know how to listen to it.
Meanwhile, my iPhone remained at the bottom of my suitcase…
Route de Prarion 1711, 74170 Saint Gervais-les-bains
From 375€ Summer week-end (price may vary depending on the season)
Don’t hesitate to contact Anjana and David for any booking request