Dreamy Days with Tony Johnston
WRS Drivetime host Tony Johnston loves nothing better than sharing a good story. While his popular 2 – 6pm show is packed with great music, news, weather and traffic updates, Tony always makes time for fascinating interviews and personal insights from across the region. For inspiration and sheer “Can-Do” spirit it’s hard to beat Karen and Andy Wilson from Samoëns, who were determined to follow their dream...
For most of us, the thought of taking a cosy winter break in an Alpine chalet conjures up feel-good images of evenings by a log fire, the glowing embers casting a flickering light across the pages of the latest holiday must-read. A glass of red, or perhaps port, airing its earthy origins close at hand.
"A warm and welcoming log cabin retreat in which to escape from the icy reception outside and safely ensconce oneself away from the bonechilling climes of mountainous magnificence, biting bitterly at the window."
It’s what we love about winter. It’s what we look forward to when the summer that we didn’t have flies South, the autumnal leaves tumble, the ground freezes and the Alpine peaks are capped with snow for yet another year.
Rêves de Montagne, near Samoëns, is one of those heart-warming places. Voted one of the Top 20 ‘coolest’ mountain retreats by The Times, it features five luxuriously appointed bedrooms, each with its own stylish bathroom.
For Karen and Andy Wilson, owning their own luxury mountain home was a dream come true, but running Rêves de Montagne is also a labour of love. Despite winter being their busiest time, it’s also when their dream of inviting guests to share their escape to the mountains becomes a vibrant reality.
Karen was previously working for the World Wildlife Fund in the UK and Andy is an architectural designer, in addition to being an all-round handy guy, which was invaluable in the struggle to restore the 300-year-old farmhouse. It was a five-year project that cost hundreds of thousands of euros. Holding on to the vision was an uphill battle – but the results are stunning.
Days start early. Up before the break of dawn, to buy fresh local bread and percolate the coffee. There’s nothing like rising and shining to home-baked scents wafting invitingly through the chalet, to welcome in a new day.
Guests venturing straight out onto the ski fields of the surrounding Grand Massif are fuelled-up by slow-burning carbs; helping whisk them downhill over the freshly groomed powdery trails. Food and wine are a big part of the experience and the end of an active day is met with gourmet delights prepared by the inhouse chef! Breakfast, dinner and house wines are inclusive.
While the long days afford Karen and Andy little chance to relax and enjoy the season themselves, the pleasure comes in hosting. And of course there’s always the occasional stolen moment on the slopes in between guest arrivals. The closest ski lift is a fiveminute drive from the chalet, with the region offering over 265 km of marked slopes.
When Rêves de Montagne was offered recently as a fantastic WRS DO CLUB deal – the luxury chalet sold out within hours. It’s popular across all seasons and for good reason - located an hour from Geneva and with winter prices starting from €1,000 p/p per week. It’s all about sharing in the mountain dream.