Category Archives: chalet holiday

Calling Home from Bulgaria? You won’t need a loan….

Since their emergence at the beginning of the 21st century, smartphones have systematically changed the way we communicate with friends and family. Apart from producing a generation of teenagers that struggle with full sentences, everything is all rather convenient nowadays. Taking a photo, writing a caption and sending it to hundreds of people takes all but a few moments making the traditional snail-mail postcard effectively redundant.

In the UK, we have an understanding of what we can and can’t do to avoid seeing a frightful surprise on our next bill, and that’s ok. But the moment our plane lands in another country and we turn our phones back on (ignoring the captain’s request to wait until we reach the terminal building of course), there’s that sudden awareness that checking what your friends are doing on Facebook may mean not being able pay your electricity bill for the rest of the year.

June 2014: All Change

In mid-2014, the EU commission introduced caps on charges for EU-operating mobile phone networks, which slashed the prices we had all been paying when travelling within the EU, which as of 2007 includes Bulgaria, the nation in which the beautiful ski town of Bansko sits.

So, instead of returning home to a larger than normal surprise from your mobile phone network, you’re now able to keep your non-holidaying friends jealous with a phone call and only pay 15 pence per minute (19 cents). For topping up the aforementioned jealousy throughout your trip, a text message will now only set you back approx 5 pence (6 cents).

If the beautiful mountains and snowy scenery doesn’t keep your attention, you can see what your non-holidaying friends are doing on Facebook for approx 16 pence (20 cents) per megabyte. It’s probably worth looking up the average file sizes of those inevitable cat photos to get some perspective.

Photo to two women looking at a phone in the snow.

Calling home from Bansko won’t cost the earth.

999 Means Nothing Outside the UK

From childhood, our parents have drilled the fact into us that if we call 999, some responsible people will turn up and make everything ok again. In the UK that makes perfect sense, but what do you do in Bulgaria if you need assistance?

Unlike in the UK, there are three numbers depending on the emergency:

150 – Ambulance

166 – Police

160 – Fire

…and according to the EU website, calls can be answered in English which is helpful (although you might have to wait to be transferred to an English speaking operator).

The best thing to do is pop these numbers in your phone for your time in Bulgaria and we certainly hope you never need to use them.

Snow Capped Mountains vs Your Phone’s Screen

Whilst you’re out there, we know the breath-taking scenery will be something to remember and your mobile phone is going to take a back seat to good company, great skiing and a fantastic chalet holiday but it’s always good to be informed!

Learn to Ski Holidays in Bansko

Here at Cloud Nine Chalets, we’ve been skiing and snowboarding for quite a while now but we can still remember our first time on the snow. It can be a bit daunting the first time that you strap something to your feet that is meant to make you go fast down a mountain so we’re offering a beginner’s ‘Learn to Ski’ package so that the only thing you have to worry about is how you are going to stop!

Bansko is a great destination for learning to ski, there are several easy beginner areas to get you started and the instructors are friendly, helpful and patient. It’s always worth having lessons, even if you are already sporty and fit, as it gets you using the right techniques from day 1! Your chalet hosts have gone through it all so they will be on hand to give you all the tips and encouragement that you need.

Learn to Ski Photo from Bansko

Learn to ski in Bansko from £419.

I (Victoria) had loads of lessons when I started to ski which helped me advance really quickly but later on when I started boarding I went without lessons and ended up with a lot of bruises…. I got to the point where I was OK getting around the mountain but I felt I wasn’t improving as much as I could be, so I had a week of lessons.  My poor instructor had to spend the first couple of lessons correcting my stance and ironing out all my bad habits (there were quite a few) but I had an immediate improvement and I couldn’t believe that I had wasted all that time not doing it properly and falling over such a lot!

Our ‘Learn to Ski’ and ‘Learn to Snowboard’ packages are designed to make your week run smoothly so that you can just focus on getting going on the snow. For £419pp (Ski) or £439pp (Snowboard) you get:

* Airport Transfers from Sofia to Bansko

* 6 Day Bansko Lift Pass

* 5 Days Group Ski or Snowboard Lessons

* 6 Day Equipment Hire

* Fully Catered Bansko Ski Chalet Accommodation

* Free wifi

* Outdoor Hot Tub

These ‘Learn to Ski’ packages will be running in Bansko, in Chalet Soltir and Chalet Juniper for the 10th Jan and the 17th Jan weeks and at the moment return flights are around £100. Your chalet hosts will look after you all week and make sure that the hot tub is nice and hot so you can soak your muscles after a day on the ski slopes.

If you want to know more about learning to ski in Bansko, just drop us a line and we will be happy to help you out!

Winter is on the way to Bansko!

The snow has arrived on the mountains which gives me a warm, tingly feeling 😀 It’s all about log fires, hot chocolate and snow laden trees.

bansko snow topped mountains

The snow has arrived in Bansko.

We (Jeanette & Richard) will be back in the lovely Chalet Juniper for our 7th season in Bansko! We obviously love it and we’re looking forward to welcoming the new members of the team, Chloe and Laura who will be running the cosy Chalet Soltir which is new to Cloud Nine Chalets this Winter.

All the fun is about to begin and we’ll be helping Chloe and Laura to get their heads around shopping in Bulgaria, learning the most important phrases in Bulgarian (“another of those, please” is one of our faves), sampling the local wines and learning where the best apres-ski bars are.

Photo of Bansko chalet hosts enjoying a sunny day

Chloe & Laura – Your Hosts in Chalet Soltir

Chloe and Laura have had a head start on us as they have already been practising some of the chalet recipes, this photo of their lemon meringue pie made my mouth water so I can’t wait to taste the real thing! We love our food at Cloud Nine Chalets so planning all the chalet menus is a great job at the start of the season.

Home made lemon meringue pie

This lemon meringue pie looks delicious.


Love Jeanette & Richard xx

Bansko Bar Crawl.

You might think that a Tuesday night in Bansko would be quiet but No! Every week, we ask our guests if they want to come with us and do the Bansko Bar Crawl. It’s a great time to see Bansko by night, have fun and for some of our guests, to try to speak French!
This season we have been singing at the karaoke bar, clubbing at Oxygen, dancing on the bar at Jack’s House, and watching the live band at Amigos…

So now it’s the end of the season and it is with a lot of pride that it’s time for us to look back over the ski season and award the winners:

CATEGORY Best Singers
Some have been a bit shy to start but then, the machine was on and some people just didn’t want to let go of the microphone! Thank you to all the team for that great night.

Our best karaoke guests in Bansko!

Our best karaoke guests in Bansko!

CATEGORY Best Costume

A fabulous week with a daily vote to choose the lucky?? one who had to dress up in a ballet Tutu during the day on the ski slopes.

Our guests took it in turns to wear a ballet tutu on the slopes!

Our guests took it in turns to wear a ballet tutu on the slopes!

CATEGORY Best time on the slopes

Even with two injured people, this afternoon on the slopes was perfect! Just be careful on the way back on the Homerun….

It's always a worry when your guests hurt themselves on the last run of the day :( but these guys didn't let that stop them from having a great ski holiday in Bansko.

It’s always a worry when your guests hurt themselves on the last run of the day 🙁 but these guys didn’t let that stop them from having a great ski holiday in Bansko.

CATEGORY Best dancers

From 10pm to 4am, those guys have been dancing all over the places in Bansko! Really, congrats (and where did you get the energy from?)

These guys danced their way around Bansko!

These guys danced their way around Bansko!

CATEGORY Best Entertainment

There was dancing…. but also smoking Shisha pipes and watching Bulgarians trying to beat Craig’s punching ball record. So yes, entertainment is the word!

Experiencing all that Bansko has to offer... including the Shish pipe bar!

Experiencing all that Bansko has to offer… including the Shish pipe bar!

CATEGORY Best New Year’s Eve

We had a fantastic time in Bansko watching the fireworks and celebrating the New Year with plenty of Champagne.

Fireworks in the town square and lots of champagne to see the night in!

Fireworks in the town square and lots of champagne to see the night in!

CATEGORY Best Clubbers

Skiing during the day and clubbing at night? Yes they have done it during all the week: great week, great night, and great guests! We needed a week off after they left 🙂

Skiing all day, clubbing all night in Bansko! Well done guys!

Skiing all day, clubbing all night in Bansko! Well done guys!

Why should you choose Chalet Juniper?

You are looking for something different than a hotel? Something smaller, friendlier and more relaxed with great food?

Having your holidays in a Chalet could be a great option for you. If you have never tried a chalet holiday, here are some of the reasons why they are so popular:

  • The Chalet is friendly and sociable. You will enjoy your own privacy (5 bedrooms, all with their own ensuite wet rooms) in a family/friendly environment butyou will have your breakfast and evening meals with the other guests and your chalet hosts near the roaring fire, where you can swap ski tips and stories and enjoy some great company.
  • You can relax in the communal lounge equipped with TV, DVD player, Wii, books, games and a bar, it’s like a home from home where you can make yourself really comfortable.
  • Your hosts will cook a delicious three course evening meal for you accompanied by local Bulgarian wines, beer and soft drink. After a day on the slopes you don’t always feel like getting dressed up and venturing out into the snow again – eating downstairs in the chalet means that you can come down in your slippers and your onsie if you want to!
Bansko Ski Chalet

Bansko ski chalet

  • Every morning, your hosts will give you a lift to the Skimania hire shop and the gondola. They will be with you at the shop to book your gear and ski lessons. And you can have a lift back to the chalet every day after a day on the slopes if you don’t fancy walking! We make everything as easy as possible for you so that you don’t have to worry about sorting out all the little bits and pieces that come with your ski holiday. Your hosts know all the ins and out of the resort so they are on hand all week to make sure that everything runs smoothly and you get the best from your holiday.
  • An afternoon tea will be waiting for you in the Chalet after your day of skiing. It’s great to come back to home-made freshly baked cake – a different one every day!
  • Just outside of the Chalet, you will enjoy and relax in the hot tub or your hosts can book for you a massage in the comfort of your own room if really feel like being pampered.