As the northern hemisphere approaches the winter season, cozy coats and chic boots aren’t the only items coming out of storage. Snowboards and skis are also making a comeback. And while the quality of the powder is perhaps the most important factor when selecting a ski-holiday destination, aficionados the world over are paying closer attention to the interiors of their winter-wonderland accommodations. These days a spate of design-driven lodges, chalets and resorts are redefining—and sometimes eschewing altogether—the traditional look and feel of what characterizes a mountain retreat.
Washington School House in Park City, Utah, tweaks the moose-head-and-antler concept in the most stylish of ways by bringing in an all-white chandelier made of crystals and a cluster of antlers—a custom Paul Allen Design showstopper. It is just one of the many curious pieces sourced specifically for the hotel. Others hail from all over the globe, including a French opera house and antiques shops in Sweden and Switzerland.
Certain places opt for a more fashion-forward approach. The new Hotel Zhero in Austria, for example, is furnished with only the finest pieces from the world’s most exclusive brands, like Bottega Veneta and Minotti. “We would like to provide our guests with an experience that is on the cutting edge of what is trending,” says Jens Liebhauser, the founder and chairman of East West Real Estate, which manages the hotel. And then there are those that choose to amp up the visuals with a covetable on-site art showcase. Twin Farms in Vermont, for instance, acts as a hidden gallery for museum-ready pieces from celebrated creatives like David Hockney and Ed Ruscha.
These ten resorts take a giant step for design, but don’t let the good looks fool you. The skiing—similar to the aesthetics—remains top-notch.