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St-Martin de Belleville

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The history of Saint Martin de Belleville ski resort

An authentic Savoyard village nestled in the hollow of the Vanoise massif

When you discover for the first time the charming village of Saint-Martin de Belleville, its narrow streets, its authentic Lauze stone houses, its bell tower, its vaulted barns, the magic happens for the young and the elderly. Only a few kilometres away from the famous resorts that make the Alps reputation internationally, we are like transported in an irresistible snapshot of the Savoy of the days gone by.

Neighbouring the imposing stations of Meribel, Courchevel, and Les Menuires, the small village of Les Trois Vallées has preserved and enriched the Savoyard heritage. Visitors looking for authenticity will not be disappointed: dwelling in Saint Martin de Belleville is like cutting yourself off from the frenzy of the outside world to give yourself a few days of calm and serenity. Far from the restlessness of near-by resorts, this village has well designed its structures to welcome visitors who want to discover its architectural and gastronomic heritage.

A life punctuated by ancestral pastoral activities

Until the beginning of the 20th century, the village-resort economy and the 22 hamlets that stretches along the Tarentaise valley, were governed by pastoral and agricultural activities. Surrounded by vast alpine pastures that contributed to its reputation, Saint-Martin de Belleville perpetuated the ancestral traditions inherited from previous generations until the apogee of industrial shift in the 20th century.

During the cold season, the Beauvillois, inhabitants of beauville, live near their livestock, in cowsheds converted to accommodate the animals and their owners. Spring, summer and fall are entirely devoted to breeding. During this period, everyone contributes in his own way to nurture the farming, either being a responsible or an employee. Plowing, sowing, climbing the mountain pastures, transforming milk, making hay, harvesting, cutting the faggots, all are tasks that punctuate the everyday life of the Beauvillois, as soon as the snow has made a way for the first buds.

The beautiful season is fleeting, so all the means are put in place to make the exploitation fruitful, and to prepare the return of the winter which will soon envelop the valley of its immaculated coat.

In the days after the First World War, an activity that initiates the shift

The end of the First World War and the occurrence of industrial changes in the 20th century has gradually transformed the Beauvillois economic landscape. This period of change is amongst other witnessing the advent of tourism in spas, and more generally the birth of recreational activities related to mountain tourism.

Faced with the many changes that are taking place in this developing society, the Belleville valley must adapt, and catch up with the delay due to its geographical and material isolation: electricity did indeed appear only in 1953.

The beginnings of alpine tourism

The 60s and 70s saw the creation of new resorts dedicated to alpine tourism, such as Les Menuires or Val Thorens. We owe this impulse to the dynamism and pugnacity of Nicolas Jay, at the time mayor of the town. These major developments will have an unprecedented impact on the valley's economy.

The villages and hamlets that lived up to the rhythm of agricultural and pastoral activities now see new perspectives that will radically change their lives and their way of life. The entire Tarentaise valley will soon enjoy the benefits of a tremendous new economic boom. Thus the resort village of Saint-Martin-de-Belleville was born in the 80s.

A village resort respectful of its Savoyard heritage

From the beginning of its' mutation, the village was keen to preserve its authentic character. The goal is to enjoy the alpine tourist attractions offered by the region without denaturing what constitutes the DNA of the picturesque Village of les Trois Vallées.

While its close neighbors have developed large-scale development projects, the Beauvillois have managed the bold challenge of adapting their reception facilities to the arrival of tourists, while remaining respectful of local buildings. A new tourist complex called the Grangeraies has thus emerged, allowing the town to welcome visitors in a setting that integrates perfectly with the local landscape: buildings are subject to limited heights, the facades are made of stone or in pink plaster, the roofs covered with slate, as is the tradition of Savoie.

A subtle alchemy between heritage preservation and outdoor activities

Saint-Martin-de-Belleville is well and truly at the intersection of two eras. Between tradition and modernity, heritage and tourist attractions, the village has managed to preserve the charm of the Savoie of bygoen days, while adapting its structures to develop its touristic activities.

From now on, skiers can access the fabulous Trois Vallées area thanks to the creation of a shuttle line, enhanced by the development in 2003 of an 8-seat chairlift.

In the summer, tourists eager for culture and authenticity will not be left behind, since the Belleville Valley invites the ever-increasing number of curious people to discover a whole range of activities that help transmit the local heritage: visits of mountain pasture, discovery of a goat farm, educational farm, heritage circuit, museum, discovery of the industrial and technical heritage of the "country" are all tourist attractions that will appeal to explorers of all ages in search of Savoyard discoveries ..

The most athletic ones can enjoy the many amenities that offer alpine pastures: hiking or mountain biking, via ferrata are all activities that will allow young and old to enjoy the benefits of a breath of fresh air!

Because the transmission of the history and the culture of a country also passes by the plate, your stay in Saint-Martin-de-Belleville will be, French tradition obliges, punctuated by the awakening of your palates: from the traditional restaurant located in the village at altitude refuge, through the discovery of a Savoyard cocoon triple star, your adventure promises to be more than charming...

Cimalpes was born in the French Alps from the dream of two entrepreneurs passionate about their Alpine lifestyle. Today, Cimalpes’ mission is to share this passion with its guests by hosting them in the most charming chalets and apartments, and by accompanying them to organize a memorable holiday in our ski resorts. The Cimalpes teams will be delighted to meet your every need; let us treat you to the Cimalpes promise.


With more than 3,000 reservations per year, Cimalpes enables more than 25,000 holidaymakers to benefit from hotel comfort in their own accommodation each winter.