In The Magazine

Far Away In the French Alps

Tuesday, November 22, 2016
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Allison Aston is the senior vice president of branding and communications at the chic and classic American sportswear brand Veronica Beard. Recently, she has been named chairman of the Society of Memorial Sloan Kettering’s Associates Committee, a group that she has lent a helping hand to for years. On November 9, the organization hosted its annual Fall Party with Valentino. The celebration aimed to raise funds to improve the treatment and prognosis of pediatric patients at MSK. Here, Aston shares memories (and love for skiing) from her trip to Courchevel in the French Alps.

Place to stay
We stayed at our cousin’s chalet and spent time with family we are only able to see once a year.

Off to the slopes
My family is Belgian and they have been going to Courchevel in the French Alps for ski vacations for years.

Small world
We actually ran into my son’s friend from school with his whole family and had the most fun lunch and ski time together. As a bonus, it was great fun to arrange a sleepover for them so far away from home.

To do
We skied the three valleys, which are all connected: Méribel, Val Thorens and Courchevel, then ate the most incredible meals both on the mountain and après ski. There are tons of fancy shops but we couldn’t be bothered with those…The skiing was that incredible—more terrain than I have ever seen!

Packing tips aplenty
I take a lot of layering options. The best for me was having my Veronica Beard Dickey Jackets, and outerwear pieces to layer on top. The good thing about a ski vacation is it’s all about the ski gear and a few casual dinner outfits. I hate to overpack, so I try and be very thoughtful about several combinations that can be mixed and matched, especially for the kids.

Meal with a view
The best restaurant on the Courchevel mountain for us was Le Pilatus. It’s right next to the Altiport, so you see all the single-engine planes and helicopters coming in, along with the best view of a quiet side of the mountain. We went three times! We also loved dining at La Galette in Méribel.

So much love
There is nothing more important to my husband, Jay, and myself than our friends and family. Spending time together is a true gift, and sharing new experiences is what makes for incredible memories. Personally, time in a place like Courchevel gives me perspective. I feel so passionate about my work at the Society of Memorial Sloan Kettering and Veronica Beard, and a magical trip such as this one helps me come back to “reality” more engaged, with new ideas and a sense of peace. I feel so lucky to be able to take these trips and cherish time with my family.

This was our first trip to the French Alps—we are sure to be back at some point very soon! 


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by Kelly LaffeyPhotographed by Billy Farrall