Six over-the-top winter escapes reserved for the super-rich

Echo Camp, Antarctica
Echo Camp, Antarctica

Pole position: Antarctica

White Desert is launching Echo Camp in Antarctica this month. This pop-up camp has six two-person, space-age sky pods, designed to be dismantled without a trace out of season. Made from composite fibreglass, providing the inhabitants with floor-to-ceiling views, the pods look like shiny black pebbles. You can test your cycling skills astride a fat bike and tackle a 10km Explorer's Loop. The company is also launching a bespoke ladies White Desert watch (from $6,500) made by Bremont, exclusively available to those who have stayed in a White Desert camp, as a memento.

The details: A & K offers a seven-night trip to Echo Camp from £83,475pp (

Superyachting in style: Antarctica

The late Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen used to host star-studded bashes at the Cannes Film Festival aboard his iconic explorer superyacht, Octopus. When he died, it was sold to billionaire entrepreneur Roger Samuelsson, who is now chartering it out for the first time. This winter, it will be available in Antarctica through Cookson Adventures, offering what must truly be the most luxurious way to see the South Pole - plus ice climbing, ski touring, polar plunging and tagging blue whales alongside working scientists.

The details: A seven-night charter of Octopus (which sleeps 12) in Antarctica costs from £2,093,860, including submersible and heli-charter (

Octopus superyacht
Octopus superyacht

Sip and slide: Austria

The Tyrol is famous for its indulgently long ski season and next year, modern Alpine hotel Das Central in Sölden will celebrate the 20th anniversary of its gourmet festival Wein am Berg ('wine on the mountain') from 20 to 23 April next year. Bringing together the region's best sommeliers, winemakers and chefs as well as guest chefs from around the world, Das Central's futuristic mountain restaurant Ice Q (which doubled as the Hoffler Klinik in the James Bond film Spectre and is Europe's highest gourmet restaurant) will host a weekend of food and wine-tasting, combined with skiing with world champions and former Olympians. Ice Q's own pinot noir will be showcased, having matured in the restaurant's high-altitude wine cellar. (

Das Central's futuristic Ice Q mountain restaurant, as seen in the James Bond film Spectre - Rudi Wyhlidal
Das Central's futuristic Ice Q mountain restaurant, as seen in the James Bond film Spectre - Rudi Wyhlidal

Glorious glaciers: Greenland

Purveyors of once-in-a-lifetime experiences, which have included diving down to the wreck of the Titanic, EYOS Expeditions has just announced a series of high-octane heli-skiing adventures to the polar regions, kicking off with a 'slope-to-sea' experience in Greenland (23-30 April 2023), accompanied by US Olympic skier Bode Miller (the most decorated male alpine skier in US history) and Chris Davenport, two-time World Extreme Skiing champion. The expedition, based aboard the 12-guest Nansen Explorer ice-breaking vessel, will head to the island of Maniitsoq off Greenland's western coast, which has a glaciated landscape, most of which has never been skied before. There, guests will navigate knife-edge ridge tops and deep powder runs.

The details: Seven nights from €60,000 (around £52,500) a cabin (

The Lapland of luxury: Sweden

If you're looking for a luxurious wilderness escape in the wilds of Scandinavia this winter, consider the exclusive-use Loggers Lodge, which sits in a remote forest in Swedish Lapland. Originally built in the late 1800s as a temporary sleeping cabin for loggers, it has been restored and relaunched in two phases, with the second, during which it doubled in size, completed for this winter. Ideal for a family or two couples, it now has two cabins - one with a central fireplace, the other with floor-to-ceiling windows on three sides - a wood-fired sauna and an outdoor hot tub.

The details: A three-night winter stay starts from £7,200 for two guests, including transfers, full board and a daily activity, such as snowmobiling, Swedish baking, snowshoe hiking or cross-country skiing (

The recently restored Loggers Lodge in Swedish Lapland includes a sauna with floor-to-ceiling views of the surrounding forest - Tanveer Badal Photography
The recently restored Loggers Lodge in Swedish Lapland includes a sauna with floor-to-ceiling views of the surrounding forest - Tanveer Badal Photography

Chalet chic: France

One five-star hotel stands out from the rest in Courchevel: the contemporary take on a fairy-tale snow palace that is the Airelles Courchevel, Les Airelles. Next month, it will launch two ultra-luxury exclusive-use chalets opposite the main building, offering total privacy with full use of the hotel's La Mer spa and seven bars and restaurants. The chalets, which sleep 12 to 15, each have a vast living area with open fire, dining room, cinema, games room with a pool table and bar, a children's playroom and a wellness area with an indoor pool, gym, sauna, hammam and a fully equipped Bernard Orcel ski room. Each also comes with a ski valet, private chef and sommelier.

The details: A week in a chalet starts at €140,000 (around £123,000) (

Would you ever go on an over-the-top winter escape? Or do you prefer to spend money on summer holidays instead? Join the conversation in the comments section below