Après-ski scenes range from the uber-chic to the laid-back, with dive-y bars filling up as quickly as alfresco cafes and exclusive nightclubs. No matter how fancy, the vibe often stays the same — energetic skiers and snowboarders still riding high from the adrenaline of a day spent on the mountain. Whether they’re ski-in, mountainside stops, or long-loved bars in town, après-ski is that awaited time when everyone, often still in some semblance of ski gear, gets together to brag about runs and laugh about falls of the day.
Though the very phrase may sound all kinds of froufrou, plenty of après-ski scenes are as down-to-earth as bars come — like the Million Dollar Cowboy Bar in Jackson Hole. The bar stools are shaped into leather saddles, the steaks are cut thick, and the scene is more cozy debauchery than it is jet-set. On the other hand, Deer Valley’s St. Regis hotel is home to the gorgeous, alfresco Terrace Café, where the scene is buzzing from early afternoon with people-watching and the hotel’s Champagne Ritual.
And still there are some après-ski watering holes that precede themselves, like the Monkey Bar in Chamonix, France; or Krazy Kanguruh in St. Anton, Austria. Both host epic indoor/outdoor parties that fall under the category of things you should experience at least once in life. Then, for skiers who can’t bear to wait the whole summer for another go on the mountain, New Zealand and Argentina are top destinations boasting solid après-ski scenes to go with their great slopes.
The good thing is that no one has to admit that they’re really only skiing so they can justify their après-ski. Your secret is safe with us.