Chalet External Renovation Courchevel

Completed Projects

Renovation Courchevel – External chalet renovation

A simple external renovation Courchevel of a private chalet where the external woodwork (bardage) of the chalet was looking tired and the tarmac driveway had seen better days.  Including some small landscaping works done to improve the external appearance of the chalet.

Woodwork that covers the external face of chalets (bardage) battles the elements and UV throughout the year.  Bardage will become discoloured over time (different shades depending on direction exposure) and if close to standing water will soak up water which results in water marks.

Even in the most exclusive areas of Courchevel 1850, Meribel and Val d’Isere chalets were generally built using cheap pine for the bardage.  If a chalet is undergoing extensive renovation it may be a good idea to consider replacing the pine bardage with a harder wearing wood such as meleze (larch).  Meleze will age naturally and looks better over time.  It requires no on-going maintenance.  Whilst a more expensive initial investment meleze will cost less over the long term and gives a natural external appearance to a chalet.

Woodwork on terraces, handrails and balustrades works even harder throughout the year than bardage.  To extend the life of wood on terraces annual maintenance is essential.

Bardage traditionally covers the upper storeys of a chalet (with a stone or crepie finish on the ground floor).  Sandblasting is heavy work and ladders are not sufficient so there will normally be a requirement for scaffold to safely work on the bardage.

It was fairly commonplace for bardage to be treated with varnish and this is still the case for terrace handrails.  Varnish, however, will have a blocking effect on the wood and will peel within a fairly short period of time.  It is now more usual for bardage to be treated with a stain or a ‘lasure’.  The lasure soaks into the wood and hence should not peel.  It is claimed that it will not discolour at all over time (it contains significant UV reflective properties) though this seems unlikely and no actual time frame is given.  Given it’s longer lifespan, extensive range of colours and comparable cost, a lasure finish is certainly preferable to varnish.

Colour finish.  Different communes will have their own planning regulations on colour and a significant change to a chalet will be of interest to the planning department.  Advice and permission should always be sought in these circumstances.  The range of possible colours for a lasure are endless and bespoke colours can be mixed.  The final lasure finish will always differ somewhat depending on the type and age of the wood that it is applied to.  There are also different methods of application to give either a block colour finish or a brushed finish.

Simon Jones undertakes construction, building & renovation projects in Meribel, Courchevel, St Martin de Belleville, Lake Annecy, Ste Foy Tarentaise, Val d’Isere and Tignes.  Our portfolio ranges from simple renovations to new build chalets.


Project Brief:

The renovation Courchevel project brief:

Sandblast exterior of chalet

Application of lasure stain

New tarmac driveway




The renovation Courchevel project involved:



Tarmac removal and reapplication


Architect: No

Planning Permission: No

Structural Engineer: Not required

Thermal study: Not required

Ground survey: Not required

RT2012: Exempt


Contractors to co-ordinate:

All of the following trades and professional contractors were involved in the renovation Courchevel project: scaffolders, sandblasting team, landscapers, groundworks (tarmac).