These are world-famous, popular resorts on account of their evolved structures, their bond to local cultures and their harmonious blend of original tradition and gentle progress. In this respect, "Best of the Alps" represents both a hallmark and an award of distinction, with the twelve resorts guaranteeing the very best quality of vacation in one of the world's most amazing landscapes - the Alps.
"Best of the Alps" has captured this special lifestyle for over 25 years in twelve of the most unique resorts in the Alps: Chamonix-Mont-Blanc, Cortina d’Ampezzo, Davos, Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Grindelwald, Kitzbühel, Lech Zürs am Arlberg, Megève, Seefeld, St. Anton am Arlberg, St. Moritz and Zermatt. The timeless charm and uniqueness of these resorts generate a serious feeling of being connected to one's roots, encourage a sense of identity and free up a person's thoughts enabling many people to discover and pursue many new opportunities here to make their dreams a reality.
Unspoilt nature and some of the world's most spectacular peaks – one need only think of the Matterhorn, Eiger or Mont Blanc – are associated directly with the "Best of the Alps" resorts. These resorts have been the pioneers of visionary thinking since they were discovered by mountaineers and adventurers in the golden era of Alpinism in the second half of the 19th century. At the same time, people also feel deeply rooted in the rich heritage of the regions. Visitors cherish the pioneering spirit of their ancestors, who came here centuries ago to create a new and more modest life for themselves as farmers.
From the indefatigable toil of their first settlers, their unshakeable down-to-earth approach and intense life in and with nature has evolved the art of living sustainably in a 'living' community, which even today produces outstanding managers, entrepreneurs, craftsmen, farmers and sportsmen and women. The determination and imagination of our forefathers can still be felt and experienced today as shared basic values in the everyday life of these towns. A clear commitment to tradition, coupled with a pursuit of excellence, are what set the "Best of the Alps" resorts apart and closely link the twelve resorts to each other.
The infrastructure in these resorts, which have grown continuously over 150 years, has for some time provided a unique breeding ground for innovation, specialist knowledge, quality and versatility. There have been fundamental achievements for winter sports in the various resorts since the first winter guests arrived in St. Moritz in 1915: the first ski school, in which the world-famous downhill style was developed on the Arlberg, the first ski lift in Davos or the first Olympic Winter Games, held in Chamonix-Mont-Blanc in 1924.
The unmistakeable and inspiring spirit of the Alps is our heritage, which we undertake to pass onto the next generations.
"Best of the Alps" invites you to get to know the exceptional people in our Alpine community, discover our wonderful natural landscapes and, above all. participate in the cultures of these 12 unique Alpine destinations.
Davos meets the criteria to become a full member of "Best of the Alps". The resort is international, and, as the highest Alpine town, is both urban, modern and attractive – and thanks to its many picturesque tributary valleys, it is also wonderfully rustic and traditional. The people are a motley mix, with locals socialising with newcomers, international workers with international second home-owners, and local students with students from the Swiss cantons. This creates a lively dynamic in Davos, which enables a wealth of innovations to flourish and upholds many cultures. It is therefore no wonder that Davos' tourist past is also deeply steeped in tradition. In the early days, it was shaped by a mix of visitors, who travelled to the mountains around Davos for recuperation. Winter tourism effectively evolved as many of them became so bored of the long days resting on the sun terraces. The patients practised skiing, ice-skating and tobogganed down the long run into neighbouring village of Klosters. The first ski lift was then erected on the Bolgen and the Davos-style toboggan was born. The arrival of the Rhaetian Railway in the Alps was effectively the starting pistol for Davos' modern tourism history. What then followed was a long and exciting history which reaches to the present day. Thanks to "Best of the Alps", we can convey our traditional values to the world as one of the most beautiful and most diverse Alpine resorts, which, even today, is shaped by its innovation and pioneering spirit.
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