Panoramic view of La Clusaz in winter
|Intercommunality||Vallées de Thônes|
|• Mayor (2008–2014)||André Vittoz|
|• Land1||40.62 km2 (15.68 sq mi)|
|• Population2 density||46/km2 (120/sq mi)|
|INSEE/Postal code||74080 / 74220|
|Elevation||984–2,616 m (3,228–8,583 ft)|
1 French Land Register data, which excludes lakes, ponds, glaciers > 1 km² (0.386 sq mi or 247 acres) and river estuaries.2 Population without double counting: residents of multiple communes (e.g., students and military personnel) only counted once.
It is a ski resort in the Alps near the Swiss border. The commune of La Clusaz is part of the Haute-Savoie département. An old village, La Clusaz has been hosting winter sports since 1907. It is the birthplace of famous French skier Vincent Vittoz and sailor Philippe Monnet. Based in the Aravis mountain range La Clusaz (originally from the word cluse - meaning a narrow path between two mountains) was once called Clusa Locus Dei meaning God's narrow place.
In 1902, the opening of the road connecting Annecy and the valley of Thônes with the Aravis Valley which allowed La Clusaz (formerly a small and remote village) to become a tourist center for summer and winter sports.
In 1956, the first cable car was introduced. The commune of La Clusaz is classified winter sports resort and of alpinism per decree of June 18, 1969. The first luge was added in 1985. The first snow cannon was added in 1994. La Clusaz is part of the Aravis skiing area which it shares with the neighbouring resort of Le Grand Bornand to offer a total of 220 km (140 mi) of pistes.
The commune of Clusaz is located 32 km (20 mi) to the east of Annecy, in the Aravis Valley. There are a number of different lakes nearby, the most famous of which is the Lac des Confins.
Coat of arms
Many sheep herds were found in the parish of La Clusaz. The King of Sardinia, the Duke of Savoy, no doubt wished to evoke this pastoral activity, in 1602 gave the village the right to use the arms of “a silver sheep on a green field”.
La Clusaz's main tourist draw is skiing during the winter season. It has introduced a number of different skiers including:
Candide Thovex, Vincent Vittoz, Mirabelle Thovex, Guy Perillat, Alain Pessey, Sam Phelps, Catherine Lombard, Raphaelle Monod, Edgar Grospiron, Regine Cavagnoud, Loic Collomb-Patton, Laurent Favre william bardsley.
The resort is also well known for hosting French paragliding competitions in the summer.
The Candide Invitational is an annual ski contest/demonstration hosted on La Balme Mountain, La Clusaz. Organized by Candide Thovex and consisting of a number of top international skiers.
Shopping in La Clusaz is much like other small alpine villages - centred around local shops specialising in either local delicacies such as cheese, meats and wines, or ski shops.
Le Tour de France in La Clusaz
Stage 9 of the 2010 Tour de France passed through La Clusaz on July 13.(source) The stage was 204.5 km (127.1 mi) and passed through La Clusaz at 66 km (41 mi) into the race that day. The route started in Morzine. The peloton came through the main part of town on the D909 and continued up to the Col des Aravis, approximately 10 km (6 mi) from town to the summit, climbing approximately 450 m (1,500 ft). The climb from town to the summit of the Aravis is approximately 7 percent. It is a category 2 climb. After the summit, there is a descent into a tunnel and on to the Col des Saisies. The stage ended in Saint Jean de Maurienne.