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The fabulous resort in the centre of the world's greatest linked ski area

Meribel is bang in the centre of the Three Valleys network, the largest linked ski area in the world, and nowhere is better placed to take advantage of the mouth-watering array of runs on offer.

The history of this remarkable French resort is fascinating and it has played a hugely significant part in the development of skiing. It was founded in 1938 by a Brit, Peter Lindsay, and as a result the British influence is strong and enduring.

Technically it is purpose-built, but you would never guess as all the buildings are low-rise and timber-clad. Even the larger hotels or apartment buildings are built in attractive chalet-style. Much of the accommodation is virtually ski-in, ski-out...and those that are not right on the slopes are served by a very efficient and free-of-charge skibus system.

There is constant improvement to the lift system and facilities here - new for the 2015-16 season are two beginners' areas at Mottaret, plus a new fast six-person chair. There are lifts, fast modern chairlifts and gondolas, everywhere you look...they ascend to no fewer than nine 'top stations' on the ridges surrounding the resort. This means that excursions to the surrounding Three Valleys resorts of Courchevel, Les Menuires and Val Thorens could scarcely be easier. This is truly a resort where skiers and boarders are pampered.

The actual highest top station is Mont du Vallon, at 2,950-metres (9,680-ft), from which there are fabulous views and sweeping steep, but not scary, runs back down to the valley. Meribel also boasts two large terrain parks, 25-acre Moonpark and the massively-expanded Area 43 park, now over a kilometre long. Both have beginner, intermediate and expert lines, and you can be filmed and watch your efforts on a giant screen!

Apres-ski rocks into action mid-afternoon at the Folie Douce on the run down from La Saulire, and the Rond-Point is a longtime favourite too (as is its toffee vodka!). In the village, Meribar, Jack's and Barometer are all lively and popular.

There's also plenty to do off the slopes in Meribel - including sightseeing flights in a small plane from the altiport.

La Fruitiere

La Fruitiere

Presenting a strong menu of seemingly simple dishes, La Fruitiere succeeds in using the finest of locally sourced ingredients to transform its fare into an unforgettable gourmet dining experience.

Take a seat in the stylish dining room with its clean pure white decor with rustic touches, as milk churns, exposed pipe work and a high ceiling with exposed support beams helping to create an atmosphere like no other.

Savoyard dishes dominate the menu and a mouth-watering selection of steak and duck dishes may just leave you feeling the pressure when asked for your order. Whatever your choice, you’ll be left feeling wholly satisfied, though if you can squeeze any more in you’ll find yourself rewarded. La Fruitiere’s specially designed cellars store and mature a range of local cheeses, and fine French wines specially selected for a real taste of France.

Jack’s Bar Meribel

Jack’s Bar Meribel

For years Jack’s Bar has been a firm favourite in the Meribel area and it’s easy to see why. As an après ski venue, Jack’s has it covered with a consistently strong line up of entertainment on every single week.

There’s something for everyone here, from coverage of live, major sporting events to live music of all genres to get the party atmosphere underway in spectacular fashion. The slopes of Meribel are evidently also popular with comedians as Jack’s has hosted household names including Rich Hall and John Bishop to dish out the laughs in one of the bars frequent stand-up comedy slots.

With your choice of draught beer on tap and a cocktail menu longer than you’re likely to have ever seen, Jack’s Bar is a great place to unwind in the early evening or dance the night away, even more so when you consider the daily drinks deals you can take advantage of.