Ski chalet in the Pyrenees

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Responsible tourism

Responsible tourism: Ski chalet in the Pyrenees

Environment

Our aim is to provide active holidays and promote awareness of the mountain environment, mountain people and their traditional way of life. We believe in supporting the local community and allowing other people to discover the beauty of the Pyrenees without upsetting their delicate natural balance. Our holidays are mainly about enjoyment and having fun, but they are also a learning experience and our guests take home with them a wealth of knowledge about the environment, geology and geography, flora and fauna, history, culture, language and way of life in the Pyrenees and of mountains in general.

We have a single company minibus and offer transfers to reduce the need for guests to hire multiple vehicles at the airport. We also encourage the use of public transport for travellers. There is a free ski bus running from Bareges to the ski lifts - just five minutes ride. Our publicity is internet based. We do not have a paper brochure and do not send out an information pack to our clients, as all of our information can be found in detail on our website. We recycle glass, paper & cardboard, metal cans and plastic bottles.

Our holidays are based from our own traditional house in a high mountain village. We spent two years restoring the house to its former glory, maintaining the original features and using local craftsmen whilst taking steps to improve the energy-efficiency of the house. Our work has encouraged a general "facelift" of the village. Our house is gas centrally heated, by a very efficient, modern, on-demand boiler. Heating is supplemented with a wood-stove burning wood from managed, sustainable forest (with zero carbon debt). We encourage our guests to close their shutters at night to conserve heating energy. Our roof and all of our walls are fully-insulated. Our washrooms are fitted with showers rather than baths, and our toilets have an eco-flush option to reduce water consumption. We use eco-friendly A-rated appliances, wash our own bedding and line-dry our linen outside in the mountain air whenever possible.

Community

We live and work in the Pyrenees year round, and we are dedicated to supporting our village community. We use local guides and instructors, local craftsmen and tradesmen. We encourage our guests to shop in the village and support the small traders. We serve locally-produced meats purchased from our village butcher. This includes the Bareges-Gavarnie AOC lamb which never leaves our valley. We introduce our guests to local honey, mountain sheeps' cheeses, cured mountain sausages and hams, confit duck and Tarbais beans produced in the SW of France. We promote local wines and spirits on our house bar. Our guests are encouraged to try local dishes at a mountain restaurant on our night off.

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