Lech's mountainside lights from the Fantastic Gondola festival
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Lech: Lights, Camera, Mountains!

Regarded as one of the best – and most exclusive – ski and culture spots in the Alps, Lech Zürs am Arlberg in Austria’s Vorarlberg region is a luxe snowy bolthole for celebs and royalty alike, and it is fast becoming as famous for its winter festivals as it is for its mountains. While the snow-capped peaks and piercing cornflower blue skies paint a stunning Alpine sight to behold, in true Lech form, a little luxe embellishment has never gone amiss…

Lech’s Fantastic Gondola festival sees the curtain open on classically imaginative Lech festivities, as December 8th, debuts a night sky menagerie of colours, lights and music that paints the Alps, gondolas and stars. Follow the glow to the top and base gondola stations of Vorarlberg ski fave, Rüfikopf, and find the evening bright and bustling with DJs, live music acts, visual art, performances and films. You’ve never seen the Alps lit up like this before: a cultural mountainside Mardi Gras, minus the beads.

Yet Lech’s colourful directing skills don’t stop there, either, as come New Year’s Eve (and where better to be than on the ski slopes come New Year’s?) tradition takes over as tourists and locals alike gather in the beautiful Edelweiss Square to watch the acoustic fireworks display. Now, you may have seen firework displays before – but this is Lech, darling. This is different. Snug and warm with mulled wine and goose-feather coats, the crisp Alpine air, myriad stars and striking white mountain skyline seem to suddenly come alive as a ballet of bright dancing lights take to the air, and the Austrian mountains are sprinkled with (tasteful) coloured glitter.

Lech's mountainside lights from the Fantastic Gondola festival
Lech's alpine ski lift with lights from the Fantastic Gondola festival
Lech's mountainside lights from the Fantastic Gondola festival

If the Austrian Alps are one of the world’s most beautiful stages, where better then than Lech to set the final scene. A bastion of culture, style and all things Alpine luxe, Hotel Arlberg is the archetypal post-ski nesting point in this world of Austrian glam, and down the corridor you will indeed probably find a famous director or two. An infamous crash-pad dedicated to total Alpine deliciousness, you’ll wake up ready for your mountain close-up.

Editor’s Journal Edit

For more Alpine gems have a peek in our tight Alpinists Edit, there you’ll find serious spots of James Bond cool like Bad Gastein's Miramonte, and Swiss boltholes of Scandi-soft design, like Vals Brücke 49. Peer into our Travel Journal for more on Lech’s culture den in the sky, with the highest golf course in Austria to revving around the mountains in Mercedes Benz’s latest roadster models. Then chillax in style at Hotel Arlberg’s Senses Spa, exclusively full of Austrian neighbour Susanne Kaufmann’s gorgeous natural products.


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All images © Lech Zürs Tourismus


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