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Decorating your chalet – should you go for a dark or light interior?

Deciding how to decorate your chalet is a very important step. It should reflect the owner’s style while being harmonious with its mountain environment.

Should you go for contemporary or traditional? What is the best look for renting? How does colour affect the atmosphere of a chalet?

We asked OVO Network’s interior designer Caroline for her advice.


What style of decor is best suited to a mountain chalet?

Whether you decide to go for a contemporary or a classic look in your chalet, the interior should be warm and cosy.

You could opt for light colours – for a bright and airy atmosphere or darker hues – for a more intimate and comfortable feel.

It’s important to choose materials and furniture that match the setting you wish to create, while taking inspiration from nature and playing with different colours and textures.

The owners of Chalet des Hottes in Morillon opted for wood cladding to create a cosy atmosphere
The dark and cosy living area at Chalet des Hottes in Morillon

Unusual lighting or a striking piece of art can also add a personal touch to your chalet, while providing a source of light and warmth.

What is the best choice for a mountain chalet – light or dark?

Taking inspiration from your chalet’s surroundings will help you create an authentic and warm atmosphere. Its setting can tip the balance towards light decor in rooms with little light, and vice versa.

It also depends on the size of the rooms and the style you are looking for. So it’s important to take these elements into account before you choose materials and furniture.

The dining table set for dinner and the contemporary kitchen at Rocalillie Lodge in St Gervais
Unique lighting adds character to this kitchen at Rocalillie Lodge, in Saint-Gervais

Choosing a look for each room

When you’re decorating a chalet, it’s important to consider the owner’s taste as well as the rental demand.

In communal areas, such as the living room or dining room, light and natural tones can be easy on the eyes and on the mind.

For example, if you have a large white wall, you can combine noble and warm materials (marble, wood, etc) and play with the lighting to create the atmosphere you want.

Darker colours and a mix of materials will result in a more intimate setting, for example in bedrooms.

Faux fur cushions and throws on a double bed in one of the bedrooms at Chalet Bolay in Montriond
Dark blue works well with white in this bedroom at Chalet Bolay in Montriond

It is just as important that each piece of furniture has a specific function. Finally, it’s important to make it easy to maintain the chalet from one rental to the next.

What impact does decor have on your rentals?

The impact is very important: whether you go for light or dark colours, it is crucial to choose quality furniture and materials.

A well-decorated interior and a warm and welcoming atmosphere will all help to make your chalet more attractive to potential guests.

The living room in Chalet Goville in La Giettaz Megève uses a combination of neutral and bright colours
The well-designed living room at Chalet Goville in La Giettaz Megève

What are the essential elements for Alpine chalet decor?

In short – quality. Well-appointed rooms, good quality materials and furniture will create that high-end feel – for example, a living room with a fireplace and well-made fabric sofas with comfortable seating.

The more character your property has, the more attractive and profitable it will be.

A classic look and big windows make this living room at Chalet des Hottes, in Morillon very welcoming
The classic look is used successfully in this living room in Chalet des Hottes, in Morillon.

Some tips for choosing your chalet style:

Before deciding on the style and interior design for your chalet, you need to ask yourself these questions:

  • What makes you feel comfortable?
  • How welcoming does it feel?
  • How sociable is the space?
  • What is easy to maintain?

Interior design and style are a matter of personal taste – what suits you might not necessarily appeal to your neighbour. But an interior that you have put your heart into will be more successful than any other.

An unusual colour scheme of blues and browns works well at this chalet
Blues and browns work together in Chalet Levant Blanc, at Seytroux

Modern, classic, Scandinavian… each style can work just as well as the other. When in doubt about your choices or your wishes, don’t hesitate to call in the professionals. This will make the project more successful and take away any stress.

What is the most important thing about an OVO Network chalet?

OVO Network offers a wide range of high-end and luxury properties. The chalet interiors are neat and spacious, inviting guests to relax with friends and family.

Most of the time, you will find a comfortable seating area around the fire. Each chalet has its own character, which you will find in the bedrooms, bathrooms and living spaces.

Some chalets also offer specific facilities such as reading corners, games rooms, spas and more.

Steam rises from the hot tub at Chalet Goville, La Giettaz - Megève
The inviting hot tub at Chalet Goville, La Giettaz.

The interior design of an Alpine chalet is an important factor in creating a warm atmosphere and ensuring a successful rental.

It’s a good idea to ask friends and professionals for advice, and to take your time making a decision. For more inspiration, visit our construction and design archives, where we offer plenty of handy guides.

Are you interested in running a property rental business? OVO Network can help. We are specialists in holiday rentals in the Alps and can help you own a successful holiday rental business and enhance the resale value of your property while hardly lifting a finger.

See how much you could earn using our calculation tool below and make sure to sign up for our Alpine Property Newsletter for all the latest tips and industry news.

About Author

Hi, I'm Lindsay, and I work on the editorial side of the OVO Network team. I'm based in Kent, England and love this job as it combines my passions for words and travelling to beautiful places.