We come to you this week from the Austrian Alps, where we are indulging in both cheeky piste pursuits and the first production trip for our rather lofty winter release — one which will come with an exciting new path in The Modern Jetsetter world, to be announced in autumn.
Our intention as we produce this forthcoming release is to tell the true story of the Tyrolean lifestyle, a classic narrative coloured in shades of the past, all whilst outlining the future of an alpine culture. From where we sit (a cosy corner in the Bergland Hotel, overlooking the main street in Sölden as snow falls thick), it seems a calm moment in the Ötztal Valley, the main setting for our story. A moment when the region sits cool and at ease between two gargantuan mountains: climate change and luxury commercialisation. If we have learnt anything thus far from our years visiting Austria, it’s that Tyroleans are a remarkable lot whose steadiness and clear vision have historically been the only tools required. So, they continue as Tyroleans do: quietly cultivating a path where all that is culturally precious remains whilst creating a multifaceted economic machine for a sustainable future.
This project shall, like all pages from The Modern Jetsetter world, come with a classically British penchant for adventure. The two main alpine villages in the Ötztal are Sölden and Obergurgl, the latter of which has long acted a hideaway for British alpine enthusiasts since the 1940s (when, we have been told, Londoners would wear tailored suits to après ski and drink snow-chilled champagne). Our equestrian-devoted readers will be delighted to learn Obergurgl is a main breeding establishment for Haflinger horses, an impossibly serene and culturally significant breed which will be a visually enormous part of our production this summer. A small selection of chapters to grace this volume: the Austrian art of gemütlichkeit; an aesthetic pursuit of alpine architecture; lifestyle guides to our favourite villages; the traditional craftsmanship and modern renaissance of Dirndls and other Austrian fashions; a filling visit into the traditional Tyrolean kitchen; a quintessential drive down the alpine pass connecting the Austrian Alps to Northern Italy; a playful homage to Tyrolean dialect; conversations with next generation of Tyrol’s tourism families and hotelier legacies; a sweeping celebration of classic European ski culture and of course, an emotional portrait of what all these pleasures depend upon: the mountains, the glaciers and the steps we can all take as modern jet-setters to soften climate change.
With more culturally iconic villages like St. Moritz, Méribel and Courchevel on the editorial (and royalty approved) radar, our editor is often asked: why the Austrian Alps? Our only job this December is to bring that answer into your home, onto your coffee table.