A general view of Saint-Gervais-les-Bains
|Intercommunality||Pays du Mont-Blanc|
|• Mayor (2020–2026)||Jean-Marc Peillex|
|63.63 km2 (24.57 sq mi)|
|• Density||88/km2 (230/sq mi)|
|Time zone||UTC+01:00 (CET)|
|• Summer (DST)||UTC+02:00 (CEST)|
|Elevation||571–4,810 m (1,873–15,781 ft)|
|1 French Land Register data, which excludes lakes, ponds, glaciers > 1 km2 (0.386 sq mi or 247 acres) and river estuaries.|
Saint-Gervais-les-Bains (French pronunciation: [sɛ̃ ʒɛʁvɛ le bɛ̃] ) is a commune in the Haute-Savoie department in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region, southeastern France. The village is best known for tourism and has been a popular holiday destination since the early 1900s. It has 445 km of pistes, the third largest domain exclusively in France, and is one of the least busy ski areas of its size. In 1892, two hundred people were killed when a water pocket in a glacier above the town suddenly burst open and caused flooding.
St Gervais les Bains (also referred to as St Gervais or St Gervais Mont Blanc) is a traditional French market and spa town, not a recently purpose built resort, and so has a significant year round population, rather than just seasonal and is full of historical buildings giving it the traditional charm much sought after in the Alps.
In winter, the main draw is of course snow sports, and the resort has a multi-national client base. It is increasing in popularity among British holiday-makers.[ citation needed ] The summer sees tourists arrive from around the world to explore the fair weather alpine activities available such as mountain biking, climbing, hiking, paragliding, and rafting. Visitors also make use of the all year thermal spa 'Les Thermes' which sits within the 'Parc Thermal' in the lower village of Le Fayet.[ citation needed ]
There are no major tour operators bringing the mass market to the town and the majority of owner operated chalet operators that were offering catered accommodation to guests have now stopped whilst the remaining ones are independent "owner-run" chalets, whilst some new luxury chalets have been built and more are planned. Therefore the town and the ski area, which is the 3rd largest in France with 445 km of piste and includes Megeve, Combloux, Les Contamines and La Giettaz avoid the heavy congestion of some of this resort's neighbours. Investment in the ski area in terms of new lifts and snow cannons is high with 5 new 6 person express chair lifts in the last 10 years with the latest for the 2019/20 season. The STBMA, has been reappointed as Operator of the Saint-Gervais-Mont-Blanc Ski Area for the next 30 years with an investment program of 157,000,000 € including 48,000,000 € between 2019 and 2026. 2 additional new lifts are planned at present, one to link the thermal park to the town and the other to reduce traffic coming to the main cable car as it will link the mainline station in le Fayet to the main cable car and received the backing of the region in a visit in July 2020.
Property prices are generally less than that of some nearby resorts and demand for property is very high both for main homes and second homes.
The main railway station for Saint-Gervais is the Gare de Saint-Gervais-les-Bains-Le Fayet. The Mont Blanc Tramway departs from the forecourt of Le Fayet station and reaches the Nid d'Aigle station at the Bionnassay glacier at an altitude of 2,372 m (7,782 ft). The Saint-Gervais–Vallorcine railway, a metre gauge line, departs from Le Fayet station and takes you to Chamonix and across the Swiss border to Martigny. Numerous other destinations throughout France (including direct trains to Paris) can be accessed from the main SNCF station at Le Fayet, and the main resort is just a 10-minute descent to the nearby A40 Peage motorway to Geneva, Lyon, Paris and connecting to the rest of the French motorway network.
The French ski jumper Marie Hoyau is a native of St. Gervais.
During the night of 11 July 1892, an underground water pocket burst out of the Tête Rousse Glacier on the slopes of the mountains above the town. It flooded the immediate valley, passing through the hamlet of Bionnay where the local school and other buildings survived, it by passed the town of St Gervais and flooded the Thermal establishment which was a residential establishment at the time in the parc Thermal in Le Fayet, killing 200 people in its path. In 2010, the rediscovery of a large water pocket deep within the glacier caused alarm as it had the potential to threaten another outburst flood. Melt-water pumping, formal evacuation plans and installation of a siren alarm system in 2010 have all been implemented to reduce the threat to life. The risk zone was considerably reduced in 2017 thanks to the measures taken notable that the level of the glacial lake is controlled and pumped out if the water level rises, so reducing the threat to life and to property.
Chamonix-Mont-Blanc, more commonly known as Chamonix, is a commune in the Haute-Savoie department in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region of Southeastern France. It was the site of the first Winter Olympics in 1924. In 2017, it had a population of 8,611.
Les Portes du Soleil is a major skisports destination in the Alps, encompassing thirteen resorts between Mont Blanc in France and Lake Geneva in Switzerland. With more than 650 km of marked pistes and about 200 lifts in total, spread over 14 valleys and about 1,036 square kilometres (400 sq mi), Portes du Soleil ranks among the two largest ski areas in the world. Almost all of the pistes are connected by lifts – a few marginal towns can be reached only by the free bus services in the area. The highest altitude accessible on skis is 2260m and the lowest is 930m. As with many other Alpine ski resorts, the lower slopes of the Portes du Soleil have snow-making facilities to extend the ski season by keeping the lower slopes open during the warmer months.
The French Alps are the portions of the Alps mountain range that stand within France, located in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes and Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur regions. While some of the ranges of the French Alps are entirely in France, others, such as the Mont Blanc massif, are shared with Switzerland and Italy.
Megève is a commune in the Haute-Savoie department in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region in southeastern France with a population of more than 3,000 residents. The town is well known as a ski resort near Mont Blanc in the French Alps. Conceived in the 1920s as a French alternative to St. Moritz by the Rothschilds, it was the first purpose-built resort in the Alps. Originally it was a prime destination for the French aristocracy. It remains one of the most famous and fanciest ski resorts in the world.
Argentière is a picturesque skiing, alpine walking and mountaineering village in the French Alps, part of the commune of Chamonix-Mont-Blanc, at an altitude of 1,252 m (4,108 ft).
The Mont Blanc tramway or Tramway du Mont-Blanc (TMB) is a mountain railway line in the Haute-Savoie department of France. It is the highest in France and the fourth highest in Europe. It is also the only railway in France reaching over 2,000 metres above sea level.
Combloux is a commune in the Haute-Savoie department in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region in south-eastern France, with a population of over 2000 residents. It is a mountain village in the French Alps and is popular as a ski resort. Combloux is located 4 km (2.5 mi) from Megève and 30 km (19 mi) from Chamonix-Mont-Blanc.
Les Contamines-Montjoie is a commune in the Haute-Savoie department in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region in south-eastern France.
Sallanches is a commune in the Haute-Savoie department of France. Located close to the Mont Blanc massif, many visitors pass through the town en route to well-known alpine resorts such as Chamonix, Megève and Saint-Gervais-les-Bains. Sallanches is also one of the towns in the Arve Valley, made popular by the presence of many high-tech industries. Over 300 retail stores are located in Sallanches, making the town a commercial hub. In 2017, the commune had a population of 16,088, and its urban area had 44,192 inhabitants.
The Saint-Gervais–Vallorcine railway, also known as the Saint-Gervais–Vallorcine Line, is a single-track 36.5 km (22.7 mi) long metre gauge railway in France connecting the SNCF's Saint-Gervais-les-Bains-Le Fayet station with Vallorcine station and the border with Switzerland through Chamonix. Opened in stages between 1901 and 1908 by the Chemins de fer de Paris à Lyon et à la Méditerranée (PLM), it is part of the main SNCF network as far as Vallorcine. To Le Châtelard is run by the Swiss company Transports de Martigny et Régions (TMR), which also operates the Martigny–Châtelard Railway.
Saint-Jean-d'Aulps is a commune in the Haute-Savoie department in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region in south-eastern France. Situated in the heart of the Vallée d'Aulps, as well as being the home to an active farming community, it is popular with holiday-makers in the Summer, for walking, and in the Winter for skiing as it is a part of the massive Portes du Soleil ski area.
Vallorcine is a commune in the Haute-Savoie department in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region in Southeastern France. In 2018, it had a population of 404.
The Tête Rousse Glacier is a small but significant glacier located in the Mont Blanc massif within the French Alps whose collapse in 1892 killed 200 people in the town of Saint-Gervais-les-Bains.
Saint-Gervais-les-Bains-Le Fayet station is a railway station serving the town Saint-Gervais-les-Bains, Haute-Savoie department, southeastern France. It is the southeastern terminus of the standard gauge La Roche-sur-Foron–Saint-Gervais-les-Bains-Le Fayet line from La Roche-sur-Foron, the southwestern terminus of the 1,000 mm gauge Saint-Gervais–Vallorcine line from the Swiss border, and the western terminus of the Mont Blanc Tramway. It is the southeastern terminus of the L3 line of the Léman Express, a suburban rail network for the Grand Genève, which began operation in 2019.
The Goûter Hut, is a mountain refuge in the French department of Haute-Savoie. It is located at a height of 3,835 metres (12,582 ft) on the Arete du Goûter in the municipality of Saint-Gervais-les-Bains. It overlooks the Glacier de Bionnassay, and is the highest wardened mountain hut in France.
Nid d'Aigle is the terminus of the Tramway du Mont Blanc (TMB) from Saint-Gervais-les-Bains on the slopes of the Mont Blanc.
Jean-Marc Peillex is a French local and regional politician from the DVD / Union of Democrats and Independents / Les Républicains, currently serving as Mayor of Saint-Gervais-les-Bains and Conseiller Général of the canton of Saint-Gervais, later Conseiller Départemental of the newly formed canton Mont-Blanc in the department of Haute-Savoie. In May 2014 he was re-elected for 6 years.
The Thermes de Saint Gervais Mont-Blanc is a spa organized around thermal springs, located in the valley of the Arve, in the hamlet of Fayet, in the municipality of Saint-Gervais-les-Bains in Haute-Savoie.
Vallorcine station is a railway station in the commune of Vallorcine, in the French department of Haute-Savoie. It is located on the 1,000 mm gauge Saint-Gervais–Vallorcine line of SNCF. The station is the last one in France before the line crosses into Switzerland.
Chamonix-Mont-Blanc station is a railway station in the commune of Chamonix-Mont-Blanc, in the French department of Haute-Savoie. It is located on the 1,000 mm gauge Saint-Gervais–Vallorcine line of SNCF. The station is adjacent to the station of the Chemin de fer du Montenvers, which operates a rack railway to the Mer de Glace.
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