Stayed at Val d'Isere Jan 20-27. Was surprised to find the World Cup at our doorsteps the first day due to it being moved to Val for lack of snow at the regularly scheduled venue. Snow depth was thin the first few days but the 20-30cm of fresh snow on the 24th really opened things up. Credit should be given to the resort management for constantly running the snow cannons to keep the pistes in as good a shape as possible. The free ski lifts at the main base area were a good starting place for the novices in our group. We never had to wait in a lift line the entire week we were there.
Apres-ski was fairly mild for us consisting of mostly shopping in town or spending a relaxing time at Salon de The on the main drag. The teas and tarts there are fabulous and the staff is incredibly kind. Everybody in the resort spoke English and we never encountered a problem due to language.
The free resort buses are useful but the Train Blue connection was not frequent enough to our tastes unlike the Train Rouge. Our accomodations were at the Chalets du Jardin Alpin and while not exactly spacious our apartment was functional and convenient especially owing to the ski in/out location.
We drank the water from the taps and cooked our own food most of the time. Also ate out at Chez Nano and Chez Paolo. Both restaurants were excellent and the prices from the Spar grocery store for self-catering were not exorbitant. None of us got the gastro bug that we heard about.
All in all, a fantastic resort with incredible runs and terrain. Would go again next year but there are other resorts we want to visit. Val d'Isere sets the bar high!