How to enjoy Arosa Gay Ski Week without hitting the slopes

Attendees at Arosa Gay Ski Week 2023, who really were at the top of this mountain in their underwear.

Arosa Gay Ski Week is one of the premier winter events on the gay social calendar, where winter sports enthusiasts from around the world flock to this mountain village in the Swiss Alps, to hit the slopes during the day and party late into the night. It’s fantastic for the gays who ski (and snowboard, of course), but what if you’re less Sporty Spice and more of a Posh Spice kind of person? Not everybody knows how to ski. So if a group of friends is attending, is it possible to join in the fun, and simply skip the main activity?

Start planning your snow bunny wardrobe, because these gay ski week events are a lot of fun for everyone, winter sports enthusiasts or otherwise. For example, Arosa is a year-round destination with stunning views, excellent hotels and restaurants, and lots of activities to enjoy, including of course those Ski Week parties.

Here are our favorite ideas for having fun at Arosa Gay Ski Week, without actually going down the slopes:

Pamper Yourself

While everyone else is swishing down the slopes, spoil yourself at one of the ultra-indulgent spas, offering a full range of treatments or just a chance to soak up the heat of a sauna. The Tschuggen Grand Hotel is the flagship property of Arosa, where the giant glass sails slice a sexy silhouette into the mountain landscape. The massive windows draw light down into the spa to brighten up the winter days.

Besides individual treatments, the spas are relaxing places to warm up in a sauna or steam room and rejuvenate. Spa culture is very popular in Switzerland, and local residents are very comfortable with being nude while enjoying some thermal healing. Saunas and steam areas in most of Switzerland, including here at Tschuggen, are co-ed. There are also separate areas only for women.

The Parties

The social schedule of parties and events is a major draw for every gay ski week. Arosa is a smaller event than extravaganzas like Aspen, Whistler, or Elevation Mammoth, but the low-key vibe is what attracts attendees. The apres-ski parties are held at local pubs and they are rowdy affairs, and of course, everyone dresses up for the theme parties at night. It is entirely possible to go ski week and just attend the parties.

The Food Scene

“Farm to table” is not just a trend in Switzerland – it’s the norm. Restaurants often display maps from where in Switzerland their menu items are sourced.

Switzerland is famous for cheese, and chocolate. But the country is at the intersection of French, German, and Italian cuisines, and Arosa (and Switzerland in general) boasts a top-notch foodie scene. Alpenblick serves multi-course, indulgent feasts, and boasts one of the best wine lists in the country, from bottles of Chateau Lafitte to many varieties of superb Swiss wines. It’s all topped off by shots of their scorching homemade schnapps if you dare. This fine dining restaurant with rustic decor is a bit out of the town center, and the roads are too narrow for taxis when covered with snow. So guests are pulled to the property in a sleigh, driven by a snowmobile. Dress appropriately for that journey.

In the center of town, try Güterschuppen, a Swiss hipster outpost with roaring fireplaces, bespoke cocktails, a fabulous brunch menu with lots of Swiss-sourced meats and cheeses, and a rotating selection of homemade wurst sausages that are a national treasure.

Try Something Sporty

Americans, this is your chance to learn the great mystery of the Winter Olympics: Arosa has a huge curling center, and they offer lessons. Curling can take a lifetime to master, but learning the basics can be a surprisingly quick process, and within the hour teams will be sliding the “rocks” along the ice and “sweeping” a path to help score points.

The Views

Arosa is only at an elevation of around 5,800 ft, similar to Boulder, Colorado, so altitude challenges are minimal. But even at a lower elevation, the views of the Swiss Alps are still quite stunning. Why ski when you can just sit with a cup of hot chocolate and drink in the views?

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