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World Travel Guide > Guides > Europe > Austria > Lech

Lech Information

Apres-ski

Lech may not boast quite the hedonistic reputation that its neighbour St Anton once did (and still does to some extent) but it still has a reputation as a party town, albeit quite a posh one.

Once the ski lifts close, the resort's main street comes alive with revellers from ground-level hotel bars spilling out onto the pavements – during the colder months, many of the hotels create ice bars, giving a particularly magical atmosphere.

There's a wide choice of spots for après-ski in Lech, but Tannbergerhof (tel: +43 55 832 202; www.tannbergerhof.com) is eternally popular with its early evening tea dance and late-night club (one of six in the village) open until 0300.

Eating out

Lech has a wide range of dining establishments for hungry skiers to choose from.

In fact, the resort boasts that there are more restaurants with points scored in the famous Gault Millau guide (the German-speaking side of the Alps preference to Michelin stars) than anywhere else of comparable size in Austria, or indeed the Alps.

One restaurant worthy of a mention is Hus Nr 8 (tel: +43 558 333 220; www.hus8.at), which is located in a 300-year-old building and serves Austrian delicacies and fondues. Johannesstübli restaurant (tel: +43 558 322 050; www.goldenerberg.at) at Oberlech is equally atmospheric and has notched-up two Gault Millau 'chef's hats' for its superb cuisine.

But it's not all gourmet offerings Café Fritz (tel: +43 558 326 500; www.cafe-fritz.at) is a bright, friendly eatery with light wooden furnishings and a reputation for affordable cuisine that's still excellent – home made with locally sourced ingredients.

For well-priced Italian dining try the Café Olympia (tel: +43 558 323 115; www.hotelolympia.at), on the ground floor of the hotel with the same name, which specialises in pasta, pizza and fast service. It also serves great cakes and real Italian coffee.

Resort Information

Beyond the slopes

Given Lech's size and typically wealthy clientele, it should be no surprise that there's plenty to do here besides skiing and boarding. As well as the resort's permanent attractions – many of them based in its individual hotels – it's also famous for its one-off events. These include the highest boat show in Europe, organised by the resort's yacht club, which exists despite the lack of a nearby marina.

Popular off-slope activities include sleigh rides, curling on the ice rink, helicopter flights and paragliding. There's also a great floodlit toboggan run down from Oberlech. Culture vultures, meanwhile, will enjoy the resort's three art galleries and library.

There are more than 40km (25 miles) of marked and cleared winter hiking trails around the resort and snowshoeing is also possible with equipment rental from ski shops and hiking guides available.

Family fun

Lech has a busy main road running through it, but the car-free oasis of Oberlech, which is reached by cable car, is a particularly good choice for families – the hotels here are linked underground by a tunnel system, giving a very sophisticated feel to the whole mini-village, as well as maintaining a peaceful atmosphere above ground. Most of Lech's comfortable hotels also have good facilities for families, usually including a swimming pool.

There are Kinderclub (tel: +43 664 123 9993; www.kinderclub-lech.at) bases in Oberlech and Lech that accept children from two to five years; at which point the ski schools can take over with special ski classes.

Retail therapy

There is an excellent selection of around 40 shops in Lech, with wonderful emporiums and boutiques among the most enticing.

The Sporthouse Strolz (tel: +43 55 832 3610), with its elegant staircase, offers an incredible range of sporting goods and gadgets from the world's top brands. The jewellery equivalent is Huber (tel: +43 55 833 737), where shoppers can browse the full range of Cartier, Rolex, Hermès and Gucci products.

Splashing out

The Arlberg is the only place in Austria to enjoy heli-skiing and heli-boarding; and it's hard to think of a better place in the Alps to try it. Helicopters take skiers and boarders to the slopes of the Mehlsack or the Schneetäli, with descents taking approximately an hour and ending at the romantic Seitental Zug near Lech. Bookings can be made through the ski schools.

Hotels

The wide selection of 4- and 5-star hotels in Lech reflects its well-heeled visitors, but there are also many moderate hotels, guest houses and chalets. Oberlech is home to many ski-in/ski-out options.

Luxury

Hotel Goldener Berg

An excellent 4-star hotel in Oberlech, Hotel Goldener Berg has great facilities, including the acclaimed Johannesstübli restaurant.

Address: , , Oberlech am Arlberg, 6764
Telephone: +43 55 832 2050
Website: http://www.goldenerberg.at

Kristiania Lech

One of the finest hotels in Lech, Kristiania Lech provides an excellent butler service for those seeking the ultimate in luxury, from acquiring guests' favourite novels to running aromatic baths. The hotel also boasts a fine selection of restaurants and bars.

Address: , Omesberg 331, Lech am Arlberg, 6764
Telephone: +43 55 832 5610
Website: http://www.kristiania.at

Moderate

Pension Sabine

One of the more affordable guest houses in Lech, Pension Sabine is located above the main resort in Oberlech, right on the slopes next to the ski school. This traditional chalet building is furnished with antique furniture and incorporates a sauna.

Address: , , Oberlech am Arlberg, 6764
Telephone: +43 664 522 1244
Website: http://www.hotelsabine.com

Hotel Haldenhof

A very popular 4-star, run by the Schwärzler family, Hotel Haldenhof repeatedly receives top marks for service and quality by satisfied guests. The on-site restaurant serves up excellent food and the hotel also houses a small spa.

Address: , Tannberg 347, Lech am Arlberg, 6764
Telephone: +43 55 832 4440
Website: http://www.haldenhof.at

Cheap

Pension Juliana

A family-run, 3-star bed and breakfast with both rooms and apartments to rent, rooms at the well-priced Pension Juliana have en-suite bathrooms. Afternoon cake and coffee is also included in the nightly price.

Address: , Stubenbach 527, Lech am Arlberg, 6764
Telephone: +43 55 833 415
Website: http://www.hotelpensionlech.com/en

Hotel Bergheim

Lech is on the lighter side when it comes to 'cheap' accommodation, but the 3-star Hotel Bergheim generally offers some of the lowest prices in the resort. Friendly staff are employed to look after guests and the hotel is located conveniently close to the resort's main amenities, including the public swimming baths.

Address: , Omesberg 172, Lech am Arlberg, 6764
Telephone: +43 55 832 256
Website: http://www.hotel-bergheim.at