Chalet Chouqui

Text Claude Hervé-Bazin / Photo Yves Garneau
Date of publication Winter 2018-2019

Sometimes one cannot help but use superlatives: the ultimate chalet, the pinnacle of comfort, the essence of good taste, the best of contemporary mountain architecture...

The roofs of the village’s other chalets lie at its foot, and the village itself under its heel. Even Mont Blanc seems to shrink a little before it, as if bowing down in the distance from its sparkling horizon. Le Chouqui is one of the biggest of all Verbier’s large contemporary chalets: more than 900 m² of living space across two neighbouring chalets separated by a hedge. Far from posing a problem, big families are in fact a solution here, the only way of occupying all nine ensuite bedrooms — each with their own balconies —, the 12 spaces in the underground car park, and the 20 seats around the huge dining table.
And why settle for one lounge when you can have two, which means twice as many luxurious sofas and twice as many cushions, twice the faux fur throws, twice the amount of herringbone tweeds, and twice the number of fireplaces too? The more beautiful of the two, encased in glass and seated on a slab of schist that seems to have been ripped from its bedrock, gently hums above its log store and beneath a wooden hood adorned with a bear’s head. Everything about this place is superlative, for this is the ultimate superchalet, the height of comfort, and the essence of good taste and of contemporary mountain architecture.
No detail has been overlooked: the furniture — British — is custom-designed, as is the LED lighting and the wireless, voice-controlled Sonos sound system. No facilities are missing either, from the useful to the frankly luxurious: a funky home cinema room, a wine cellar with its own bar, a bunk room, games room, laundry room, and ski room. Then there are the centrepieces of this château in wood: a 15-metre indoor swimming pool, an outdoor hot tub steaming in the icy air, and a hammam lit by lights that sparkle like the night sky. And just for good measure, there is also one of Verbier’s most expansive outdoor terraces.
Eleven dedicated staff take turns in making this little hive tick, right around the clock: in-resort drivers on hand 24 hours a day, concierge service, a private chef and maître d’, and a nanny and chalet hosts. All a touch excessive? Well, one thing is for sure: this is more than a chalet, or even two; it is a destination in itself, the kind of whim that only a star or a billionaire can enjoy, the ultimate form of recognition for anyone who may, at some stage, have doubted their ability to make it big. To enjoy this insane luxury is to savour a life of success.