Noel and Gertie

With Mrs Q (Helen Power) about to embark on 2017 UK tour of Noel and Gertie, I thought I would use the opportunity to share some pictures I took while Helen worked on this show previously in Frinton-On-Sea in 2014.  I was allowed take pictures on same day the official photographer was in, which was fun.

The show, or more correctly a Musical Review, by Sheridan Morley is drawn from the songs, letters, poems, films and diaries of Noel Coward, reflecting on his long association with Gertrude Lawrence.

 

Noel and Gertie - Frinton 2014

The 2017 tour, produced by Matthew Townshend productions, staring Helen Power and Ben Stock runs from February 2017 to May 2017.  For more information and tour dates see MTP Productions site.

 

 

Ski 2017 La Clusaz & Le Grand Bornand

When you find a product or service that works every time why change.  I’ve been using Ski Weekender for annual ski trip since 2009 so when my brother suggested we take a trip this year to celebrate his 40th birthday, it was a no-brainer.  My usual ski buddy, my brother-in-law Tom wasn’t allowed come this year, or something (Disney related trip with family…)

Ski Weekender operate out of St Jean de Sixt, which is 5 minute drive from La Clusaz and Le Grand Bornand resorts, and Samoens.  Quite simply, they offer weekend or mid-week trips.  You get yourself to Geneva Airport on Monday afternoon (for mid-week) or Thursday afternoon (for a weekend trip) and they will look after you with their first class customer service.  Included are transfers too and from airport, lift passes, most meals (I think it is only mid-week where  you have to fend for yourself on chef’s night off), transfers too and from resort in the mornings and evenings.  They also have well stocked equipment rooms where you can hire your gear (skis, boot, boards, helmets.. the lot).

We stayed in St Jean de Sixt this year so had 3 full days to explore La Clusaz and Le Grand Bornand.  The weather plays an important part in any holiday, and it is quite the topic of conversation to anyone about to go on a ski trip, which probably bores all around them in the few weeks running up to the trip.  Having been on the Alps many times, you also know that despite forecast, the weather can change quickly. In the few weeks running up to our trip at beginning of February, there had not been any fresh snow in the area and also, it had been a bit “warm” (relatively) for that time of year.

So, Tuesday, was cloudy, so we chose Le Grand Bornand, because Wednesday was to be the best day, sunny, and one of my favourite spots on the resort is the summit of Col de Balme, which on a clear day… the views are spectacular.

 

On Thursday, we were able to return to Le Grand Bornand to ski in better weather, speaking of which, a couple of days after we returned home, they had fresh snow fall…. just our luck.  On the up side, due to the dates we have chosen to make our trip, you are pretty much guaranteed empty pistes, no queues at chair lifts, no busy pistes, no busy cafe’s etc.  Ok, it was a bit busier on Thursday, but nowhere near I’ve experienced at other resorts.

I can’t stress enough the quality of service from Ski Weekender.  At both resorts the food served is always first class with “relatively” free flowing wine. 4 course meals in the evening, breakfasts, coffee & cake after ski and at The Aravis Lodge in St Jean de Sixt, plenty of places to relax after a day on piste, including the bar of course!  The staff are always willing to help, chat and do everything they can to ensure that guests have a great time.

I really do recommend checking out Ski Weekender if you are after a short break.  I would add, if you are after a boozy weekend / week on the piste with a bit more of a party style, maybe this isn’t the place for you.