Sun, Snow & Mulled Sangría

Welcome to the Costa del Ski!

The smart ski set used to look down its collective Prada sun visors at the unfashionable Sierra Nevada, famous for its lack of cuckoo clock charm. But this year a lush new designer hotel has put the maligned Spanish ski resort back in the winter sports race.

Opened in December 2012 by the Marbella Club Group, El Lodge delivers off-piste panache with a five-star flourish, to the same impeccable standards as its famous sister establishments on Marbella’s Golden Mile.

El Lodge Sierra Nevada

Snow joke – sun worshipping, Marbella style, comes to the Sierra Nevada

Capitalising on the sunshine record of Europe’s most southerly ski resort, El Lodge boasts the resort’s only open-air heated swimming pool, complete with sun loungers and an al fresco Finnish hot tub.

But the undoubted star of this high-altitude show is Suite Nevada Terrace – a genuine ‘chill-out’ bar/restaurant with a Marbella beach club vibe, encircled by snow-capped peaks! Snow bunnies can hop directly onto the Maribel and Águila ski runs from the sun deck or stay put to watch the action, cocooned in a soft blanket.

El Lodge Sierra Nevada

Suite Nevada Terrace – the original chill-out zone

Don’t be surprised to find Madonna, the Beckhams or the Blairs topping up their tans here, or cozying up around the crackling log fires. They’re all clients of British designer Andrew Martin, who created the sumptuous interiors (think warm Finnish wood and cool Nordic style). Famous guests can be as incognito as they choose because the pinnacle of privacy here goes beyond the Penthouse Suite – you can reserve an entire floor! A health spa and a gourmet restaurant are other wow factors.

El Lodge Sierra Nevada

The MC Grill offers cuisine at a high level

You could almost be in Marbella – and you can be. El Lodge Sierra Nevada is also offered as a two-centre break combined with the Marbella Club or Puente Romano hotels.

El Lodge gets the vote of well-known Marbella realtor, Christopher Clover. The MD of Panorama Properties who stayed there in December and was the first guest to post about it on Trip Advisor, writes: ‘A world class hotel, finally, in the Sierra Nevada … For someone looking for the best, this is where to stay.’

6 Sizzling Reasons to Visit the Sierra Nevada

  1. You can water ski and snow ski on the same day (technically) as the resort is less than 100 km from Granada’s Costa Tropical.
  2. So sunny and warm, you can tan in a bikini if you pick a sheltered spot!
  3. Your snowman won’t melt! Despite the sunshine factor, the resort has a long ski season (December until late April/May) due to the high altitude (3,300 metres) and north-east orientation of the pistes. Check out the latest snow report here.
  4. The foothills in February are as pretty as a spring bride, when the almond trees are dressed in frothy pink and white blossom.
  5. With the city of Granada and the Alhambra Palace nearby, it offers great sight-seeing.
  6. The après ski’s looking a lot more upmarket with the opening of El Lodge.

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