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Meet the hotel manager: We talk to Thierry Pecorella, general manager of Ultima Courchevel

By Ina Yulo Stuve on 23rd January 2021

Privacy and seclusion are both things that all of us could do with right now. Building this type of environment is also something that luxury brand Ultima Collection has down to an art.

From a five-star hotel to a stable of ultra-luxury private chalets and villas, the team at Ultima Collection shrouds its guests in a milieu of exceptional service and beautiful design in unparalleled locations.

Thierry Pecorella, general manager of Ultima Courchevel, the group’s newest property in the French Alps, said: “What attracted me to Ultima Collection is the ultra-personalisation services offered by a team who are fully dedicated to the wellbeing of the guests, the exceptional quality of the properties, and the very privileged locations of each property.”

Raised on the French Riviera, Pecorella shares that his upbringing allowed him to get a taste for the hospitality industry and built the foundation on a career that would see the French-Italian hotelier hopping from Nice to Tolouse, Milan, and Lake Garda.

LLM – Luxury Lifestyle Magazine writer Ina Yulo Stuve speaks with Pecorella to learn more about the collection’s new opening and the perfect day he would send guests on in Courchevel.

Ultima Courchevel is an ultra-luxury ski resort in the French Alps

What made you decide to join Ultima Collection?

What attracted me to Ultima Collection is the ultra-personalisation services offered by a team who is fully dedicated to the wellbeing of the guests, the exceptional quality of the properties, and the very privileged locations of each property.

What makes Ultima Courchevel stand out from other properties you’ve worked in?

Ultima Courchevel is a unique property combining exemplary five-star hotel service with the discretion and seclusion of a private residence. Spread over 6,100m2 with four- and five-bedroom chalets, we offer two world-class spas, treatment rooms, indoor and outdoor pools, a sauna, hammam, jacuzzi, mountain-facing gym with guaranteed scenic views of the mountains from every angle, as well as direct access to the Belvédère slopes, for the utmost privacy away from the crowds.

Who is your typical customer?

Our guests have one particularity in common; they are time-poor, so whenever they have the opportunity to escape, they wish to spend their precious time relaxing and doing what they love. With their close family or a group of friends, our guests look for privacy, beautiful spaces, and premium service.

Each luxurious chalet offers breath-taking views of the mountains

If you could plan a one-day itinerary for guests looking to explore Courchevel, where would you send them?

Courchevel offers so much to discover, but I wouldn’t miss a day enjoying the Trois Vallées ski area, which is the world’s largest ski area.

For an unforgettable experience, I would kick off the day with a first track experience at La Saulire and be the first one and only one at the top of the mountain to enjoy and discover the panorama of an exclusive and legendary Courchevel. The Combe de la Saulire slope is an extraordinary track; it starts at 2,700m above sea level and extends over 3km. Naturally bordered by the mountain on both sides, the snow is always exceptional from the beginning to the end of the season.

After that, experience ice diving and embark on a wild adventure just a short distance from the resort; a timeless journey beneath the frozen Lac du Praz. After putting on a waterproof dry suit and diving equipment, it’s time for a new underwater adventure and enjoy new thrills as soon as you slide into this exciting water world. Let the light spectrum dance around you, welcome the feeling of weightlessness, and play with the bubbles following the rhythm of your breathing.  It’s a whole new experience!

To end your day, a well-deserved relaxing time in our spa; an oasis of relaxation and serenity where our team of highly trained spa therapists will take care of your body and mind, enjoying a holistic treatment.

Spacious four and five bedroomed chalets offer a chance for family and friends to holiday together

Building the right team is crucial for a property’s success. What are the key skills you look for when hiring new employees?

In selecting our teams, we are very vigilant about the personalities we recruit beyond the technical aspect. In our field of ultra-luxury, the notion of empathy is very important anticipating the needs of our customers even before they think about it. Our employees are then trained to the standards of Ultima hospitality with the objective of offering the awaited, but especially the unexpected.

How important is it for a luxury hotel to have a solid gastronomic offering?

Gastronomy is an integral part of a successful and memorable experience. Our guests are epicurean lovers!

What is the one dish that guests have to try when at Ultima Courchevel?

There’s not just one dish to try when at Ultima Courchevel, but many. Our executive chef proposes a fully à la carte experience, depending on our host’s wishes.

The highest quality furnishings have been used, including stunning marble bathrooms

2020 was a challenging year for the hospitality industry. In your opinion, how will travel trends change in 2021?

The way we travel has evolved significantly in recent years, and 2020 has certainly helped to accelerate these changes. The hospitality industry needs to continually renew, innovate, and focus on the essentials – the wellbeing of our customers.

Travellers are thirsty for more space, privacy, and to be surprised. Ultima Collection has been ahead of this trend and it is part of our DNA to keep reinventing the branded private residence arena.


Address: Courchevel Moriond, 228 Rue du Belvédère, 73120 Courchevel, France
Phone: +41 22 779 33 33

Images courtesy of Ultima Courchevel