Looking to escape on a winter break? There's one thing you'll probably be wanting more than anything else – guaranteed snow.
And not just a thick layer of powder up on the slopes, but an ample spread of the white stuff over everything down at your hotel, too. Because what kind of winter wonderland is a view of a drizzly grey car park?
Up in the alpine village of Samnaun, on Switzerland's far eastern border with Austria, they're so confident of their ability to deliver a thick layer of snow not just high on the piste but down in the village, that they're ready to bet the price of your stay on it.
The resort's three ZEGG hotels are offering guests the opportunity to take out snow guarantee insurance, meaning that unless the village is covered in a beautiful blanket of white, they'll get a 50 percent discount on that day's stay.
Every morning at 9am the amount of snow covering the meadow behind the village's Chalet Silvretta Hotel and Apparthotel Nevada will be measured and the result published online at www.hotelchasamontana.ch. If it is shown to be less than 5cm thick, guests at both those two hotels and at the Chasa Montana who have taken out the insurance will have their bill for that day's stay cut in half.
The snow guarantee insurance – which takes the form of a 5 percent surcharge on the cost of the hotel booking – is valid from the start of the winter season on November 22 until December 21 and guests must take it out at least ten days before arrival and for the whole duration of their stay.
The probability of snow in Samnaun is above average because of its high altitude (1,844m) and easterly location, so the hoteliers don't expect to be coughing up too much. But then there's no predicting the weather all of the time. Why not have a flurry on a flurry?
Find out more at www.hotelchasamontana.ch.