South America's oldest and best-known ski area is perched 2850m above a collection of blue huts housing border troops in a remote and stunning valley. After a two-and-a-half-hour drive from Santiago, visitors must negotiate the desolate Uspallata Pass across the Andes, which link the central valley of Chile with the Argentinean city of Mendoza. This is the most important and impressive of the two mountain passes that remain open during winter. Trucks moving at snail's pace negotiate hairpin bends to reach the Argentine border 'Little Pass'.
A single large, yellow hotel, the Hotel Portillo, built near the edge of the beautiful frozen lake, dominates the resort of Portillo. With only 450 hotel beds, the slopes are rarely crowded and you are bound to run into just about everyone you've met on the slopes - ski racers, tourists, rock stars and politicians - back at the hotel after the lifts have shut.
COURMAYEUR EASTER SKI WEEKEND OFFER
4 nights B&B at the 3* Hotel Bouton d'Or, scheduled flights and car hire from £598 per person
4 days skiing and only 1 day out of the office
Contact Momentum Ski on
020 7371 9111