High-altitude ski resort Avoriaz is also a dream destination for architecture buffs 

Heavy snow had been forecast, and, as our minivan climbed up the mountain from Morzine, the weather grew worse, the van’s tyres struggling to cope as a thick blanket settled on the sides of the winding road, turning it into a single track. At each hairpin bend we’d see the lights of other vehicles returning from the resort, their wheels struggling to brake while we tried to maintain forward momentum, not wanting to wheel-spin and then be stuck on the mountainside.

Eventually we reached the resort, although all we could see through the whiteout were some lights around the edge of what looked like a large garage. The last part of the journey was in a kind of portacabin on top of a tractor. Avoriaz is famous for being car-free, but in weather like this, walking was impossible. We climbed up a ladder and only a few minutes later were at our accommodation, shielding our faces from the whirling snow and feeling with our feet to find the edge of steps up to the front door. Welcome to Avoriaz 1,800m.