Livigno – Italy
Resort height: 1,860m – 2,792m
Total piste length: 115km
With around 150 bars and duty-free shopping, it’s not hard to see why Livigno is renowned for its cosmopolitan atmosphere. There’s just as much, if not more, to keep you entertained off the slopes than on them. Livigno has more bars than any ski resort in the world, and with the low prices of alcohol and abundance of venues to choose from, the après-ski scene certainly takes precedence here. In addition to all the retail therapy to be enjoyed, Livigno also offers horse-riding, sleigh rides, paragliding and ice climbing.
Located on the Swiss border, Livigno ensures all skill levels are catered for, with blue and red runs across the valley as well as nursery slopes and ski schools, everyone is welcome. For those more interested in shopping than the skiing, there’s a 3km pedestrianised centre with a host of bars, shops and restaurants.
Where to lunch
Larice Italian Bistro is the brainchild of Monica Galli. Opened recently, the restaurant is light and airy inside with a small outside area furnished with coloured chairs. This warm and inviting bistro serves variations of sushi, made even more special by the use of local fish and vegetables on offer. There is also a breakfast menu for early risers featuring pastries and homemade cakes.
Birrifico Livigno is the producer of the ‘highest beer in all of Europe’, as the name of their ‘1816’ beer suggests, the beer is brewed at this astonishing altitude. Staff are also on hand to suggest the best combinations of beer and food for you.
Where to stay
Lac Salin Spa and Mountain Resort is widely considered the top hotel in the area. Surrounded on all sides by mountains, this idyllic retreat offers its guests the chance to relax in one of 65 luxury rooms and suites. With the Madira Spa spanning an impressive 900 square metres, the hotel also has a restaurant serving local delicacies with special menus for those with dietary requirements.
Hotel Alegra offers a well-situated and welcoming alternative to Lac Salin. Located at the start of the ski lifts of Carosello, Alegra prides itself on being a hotel with ‘personality’. From 15:00 onwards, the terrace is full of people enjoying DJ sets and drinks. The hotel also puts on themed nights and supports local bands.
Marco’s Pub is one of the most famous après-ski spots in Livigno. Promising to ‘help people to have fun’, the pub certainly delivers, playing live music and serving drinks from 19:00 until 3:00am. With a contemporary interior and an eclectic mix of customers, the pub prides itself on its vibrant atmosphere. A powerful music system, live stage and sports screens add to the appeal as well as two different live nights a week and over 40 concerts a season.
Alternatively Daphne’s bar offers its guest’s drinks and live music in an informal, relaxed setting. Daphne’s interior is constructed entirely from local antique wood, giving the place a traditional, homely feel. Its Irish inspiration means that many of the customers are those looking to drink the finest beers Europe has to offer, including Guinness, Warsteiner and Leffe Brune. In addition Daphne’s also serve classic cocktails and wines, with particular attention paid to the ingredients.