Sunday, April 23, 2006

Skiing on a Warm Planet

Is this the future of skiing? Snoasis , a proposed indoor ski resort 80 miles from London, received key approvals on Friday and is slated to open in 2009. If it is completed, the $570 million complex will have a 1,550-foot-long main ski slope with 330 feet of vertical drop, plus the usual accoutrements: ice rink, ice climbing wall, bobsled run, golf course, conference center and casino. At the district council meeting where approval was granted, one dissenter likened Snoasis to a giant phallus looming above the bucolic Suffolk countryside.

This year a similar indoor ski resort opened in Dubai, but Britain? Not surprising, really: It's a 12-hour drive from London to Scotland, and there's often little snow when you get there. One-hundred meters of vertical drop isn't much, but it'll be good for the kids, the after-work crowd, and business meetings, I suppose. If I lived in London, I'd still be buying those dirt-cheap airfares to ski in the Alps on weekends.

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