|The Portes du Soleil can be characterised as a predominantly French area with a sprinkling of English and Dutch residents. The majority of foreign buyers are located in or around the main resorts of Morzine, Les Gets and Chatel, with Morzine in particular having a large and ever expanding English contingent. The area has a reputation for being friendly and welcoming, and integration into the community is both easy and encouraged. Those that make the effort to speak French and 'fit in' soon find themselves reaping the benefits of their efforts. However, for those lacking the time or inclination to learn the language the ex-pat communities are strong and lively. For better or for worse it is now perfectly feasible to live contentedly in the Portes du Soleil speaking entirely English, with clubs and societies available that help to add to the communal feel amongst the English speaking fraternity.|
There are primary schools and middle schools in all the major towns (Les Gets, Morzine, Chatel, St Jean d'Aulps,) and secondary schools in St Jean d'Aulps and the Abondance Valley. There are further schools in Thonon, which at an average of 35 minutes away is the nearest commercial centre. British children are no longer the novelty they once were and local schools have learned to adopt to the challenges of multi-national classes.
For education of a less scholarly nature, Avoriaz's Children's Village, managed by Olympic-medalist Annie Famose and a staff of 120 instructors, is acclaimed for teaching youngsters aged 3-16 to ski. In Morzine, the Club des Piou Piou offers ski lessons for children aged 3 to 12. All the local schools also provide skiing on Wednesday afternoons!
Community facilities are based around the arena complex at Morzine, which offers curling, skating, ice hockey, skidoo, dogsleigh rides, mountain biking on the snow, table tennis, a weight room, dancing and gymnastics. Painting exhibits, figure skating, ice dancing, hockey games and movies are also scheduled. It is located next to the extensive tennis court facilities, skate park and excellent Olympic sized outdoor swimming pool, which becomes the center of attention during the summer months.