Even before the first snow hits the ground, people start dreaming about and searching for their next winter escape. The ultimate getaway? A slopeside ski chalet with luxurious interiors as beautiful as the scene outdoors.
It’s no accident that certain ski chalets get booked over and over, year after year. Their homeowners mastered how to decorate a chalet style home like professional designers. Here, we dig into the fundamentals of chalet style that could entice more bookings and drive up your rental income.
(Don’t be surprised if your guests will be so excited to stay indoors they’ll hardly want to ski at all.)
Incorporating the natural elements right outside your door is the best starting point. Think rugged wood furniture, granite countertops, and stone floors. Beyond those materials, turn your attention to hues. Greens, browns, russets, and creamy whites are all reminiscent of snow falling on lush forests.
Also vital to set the scene—matching nature’s scale. Take a cue from the towering pine trees and soaring mountain summits. Look for furniture and pieces that are also robust and statuesque. No dainty furniture here. Ski chalet homes tend to have tall ceilings, so bringing in pieces that mirror the scale of natural elements will make your entire vacation rental feel well proportioned.
After long ski runs, everyone in the group longs for the moment when they can sink into the sofa and relax or gather by the firepit sipping on hot toddies. So, make it easy for groups to come together après-ski. Invest in large, cozy sofas, a group of comfy armchairs, and oval dining tables that draw in conversation.
The goal: to comfort, warm, and soften the space to make it more inviting after a day battling the elements outdoors.
No matter how show-stopping your ski chalet is, the highlight will always be the natural beauty outside. Leverage that. Create conversation areas near windows or out on the balcony (these spaces make for appealing vacation rental photos). Also, avoid heavy window treatments or dark curtains so guests can have uninterrupted views of the snow-covered landscapes.
Have a fireplace? Make it front and center. Rearrange your furniture to make the fireplace—not your TV—the focal point. Play it up even more by adding a minimal amount of decor on the mantle, such as faux pillar candles or greenery.
Then, provide a large stack of logs close by. They’ll double as rustic decor and kindling so guests are always ready for impromptu nights by the fire. All there’s left to do is pour the hot chocolate.
Unlike mountain cabins that are meant as cozy, homey spaces, ski chalets are seen as luxurious and spacious retreats with room to roam. Make your chalet worthy of guests spending top dollar by adding touches of glamour. For instance, invest in an ornate chandelier for dramatic lighting or add metallic elements and mirrors to reflect light.
Keep this in mind: It’s always sweater weather to ski chalet guests. So, add dimension with plush, wintry textures. Think faux fur and oversized nubby knit throws draped over your sofas. Or, tartan pillows and quilted velvet in the bedrooms.
Help guests keep their feet warm by placing rugs throughout the living room and bedrooms. Look for rugs that are soft to the touch, but still easy to launder between stays.
Activities like skiing, snowshoeing, and ice skating are all part of the winter mountain experience. Bring those elements indoors with framed vintage ski and snow travel posters, by hanging old ice skates in the mudroom, or lacing tree boughs through a chandelier. Displaying antlers or vintage snowshoes is another easy way to add a refined, rustic appeal to your space.
What’s charming outside will draw people in. Set a warm and welcoming scene outside your ski chalet, whether it’s raining or snowing when guests arrive. Before property photo shoots, the Vacasa team stages all of our homes inside and outside to take the best photos possible. Some decor ideas to spruce up your outdoors:
Add weather resistant outdoor seating made of durable materials (teak and POLYWOOD® are among the Vacasa design team’s favorites).
Avid outdoor enthusiasts will likely travel with their equipment, so give them a place to stow their gear. Look for solutions that can fit any size, profile, or binding type of ski and snowboard. Options include ski and snowboard racks or ventilated lockers that can be placed in the garage or basement.
Guests will need a place to hang their wet, puffy jackets. Not to mention gloves, hats, and boots. Instead of a closet (wet items need plenty of space to dry), designate a portion of your entryway to serve as a mudroom. Put up hooks, shoe racks, and nice storage bins so guests will be less likely to track dripping items throughout the house.
Also, place a rug runner at your front door so you’re not left with muddy boot tracks.
Create the ultimate winter haven with these ski chalet decorating ideas. Your home will not only stand out among the competition, but also draw in more guests willing to indulge in a luxury mountain experience.
Want more ways to design your ski chalet for bigger profits? Learn how to decorate your vacation rental like a professional interior designer. Or, check out our Vacasa Interior Design program for personalized vacation home interior design services that can help you boost bookings and revenue all year round.
While both are typically found in mountain or lake destinations, cabins and chalets are two distinct types of homes. Generally tucked away in the woods, cabins are quaint standalone homes most often made from logs (though today they can be built from any material). Plus, they’re typically meant to be intimate, cozy retreats with just a single story.
On the other hand, chalets are often described as “mountain mansions,” thanks to their grand size and luxurious features and amenities. Think soaring ceilings, large fireplaces, and multiple stories and rooms. Chalets are typically closer to ski resorts and many offer ski-in/ski-out access.
Ski chalets were originally modeled after mountain homes found in the Swiss Alps, with wide balconies, a gently sloping roof, wide eaves, decorative wood details, and massive windows. Inside, there is generally a lot of room, with high beamed ceilings and plenty of natural light. A fireplace is a big vocal point of the living space. Modern ski chalets may forego the original Swiss silhouette, but still offer the grand architecture and space.
Not much can compare to the cozy warmth of a log cabin in the woods. Here are some ways to decorate a cabin to command a higher rate and attract more guests:
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