The inspiration for the name of a new ski property development in the French Alps is far from being a shaggy-dog story!

The region’s leading developer of ski properties, MGM, which plans to build a new residence de tourisme at Val Cenis in the Haute-Maurienne, close to the Italian border, has named the scheme Le Chalet de Flambeau in memory of a legendary local canine postman.

The dog – a German Shepherd – ensured the arrival of the mail between the town of Lanslebourg (now part of Val Cenis) and Fort Solli�res, perched high on Mont Froid, during the 1930s. Every day for ten years, summer and winter, at the same time of day, Flambeau – The Torch’ – could be relied upon for the safe delivery of the military postbags.

MGM’s proposed new four-star residence will comprise 197 one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments. Those in the first phase will be ready for occupation before the end of 2011.

This computer-generated image shows MGM’s planned new residence de tourisme at Val Cenis which has been named the scheme Le Chalet de Flambeau at Val Cenis.

Located close to the ski lift – giving access to around 125 km of pistes – Le Chalet de Flambeau’s position in the sunny valley of the River Arc is expected to make it a destination for year-round holidays. Hiking, horse riding, climbing, paragliding and fishing are among the numerous outdoor activities on offer locally.

As in most MGM residences, facilities will include an indoor pool with a glazed roof, fitness suite, gym, sauna, jacuzzi and steam rooms, as well as a beauty centre with a variety of massages and treatments on offer.

For MGM, which currently has properties for sale in 24 mountain and lakeside locations, Val Cenis is a new region of the French Alps.

Richard Deans, sales consultant in the company’s London-based UK sales office, says that the site in Val Cenis provides MGM with the opportunity to offer a new generation of affordable-range’ ski properties in the biggest ski resort in the Haute-Maurienne.

Val Cenis – charming, unspoilt and, in some ways, a bit of a time-warp.

Located between two national parks – the Vanoise and Italy’s Gran Paradiso which together create Europe’s largest wilderness area of almost 500 square miles (1,250 square kilometres) – Val Cenis is described by Richard as “charming, unspoilt and, in some ways, a bit of a time-warp.”

All of MGM’s new leaseback homes are fully furnished and decorated. They have pine internal finishes with tiled and parquet floors. In keeping with MGM’s policy of using local natural materials wherever possible, the buildings are clad externally in timber and stone. Each home comes with cellar storage, a ski locker and underground parking.

Although not yet announced, off-plan prices at Le Chalet de Flambeau are expected to start at around €150,000 for a one-bedroom apartment, excluding VAT at 19.6 per cent which is waived under the leaseback scheme.

Find out more about Le Chalet de Flambeau, as well as other new MGM developments at Flaine, Alpe d’Huez and Tignes, by visiting the company’s stand number P200 at The France Show, Earls Court, London (January 8 – 10). Alternatively call 0207 4940706, email or visit the website

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