WorldTour logjam at the top of the Teide volcano
A popular hotel for Tour de France-bound pros searching for altitude and sun is already booked out in 2024 and 2025.
Heading out the door? Read this article on the new Outside+ app available now on iOS devices for members! Download the app.
There’s overbooking at cycling’s favorite high-altitude hotel.
For years, Spain’s Teide volcano is the peloton’s favorite destination for off-season training camps.
The towering massif, which tops out at 12,188 feet, presents the perfect backdrop for top WorldTour pros looking for warm weather, good roads, and the benefits of altitude training.
On any given week in the winter and spring months, the hotel perched on the edge of the summit crater is often packed with who’s who of elite cycling.
There’s a problem — the 37-room hotel called the “Parador de Las Cañadas del Teide” — is often booked up.
And according to a report in Het Laatste Nieuws, Jumbo-Visma is packing out the place with its riders and staffers.
In a race to secure rooms at the popular training destination, the Dutch outfit is winning.
“We’ve booked a lot of rooms there, but not to get in the way of the other teams,” Jumbo-Visma sport director Merijn Zeeman told HLN. “We know the hotel fills up fast in February. You gotta be quick.”
Jumbo-Visma’s heavy presence in the cozy lodge — the team currently has at least six riders up on the mountain this week and Wout van Aert arrives tomorrow — means that rival teams are being forced to try to find other accommodations elsewhere on the edges of the volcano or search out other high-altitude destinations that provide the warm weather and smooth roads ideal for training.
That’s not so easy.
Other favored training areas are often choked in snow well into late spring, such as Spain’s Sierra Nevada or Italy’s Livigno region in the Italian Alps. Colombia is too far away, though Annemiek van Vleuten, who also often trains at Teide, has been training in South America for several weeks.
The neighboring Gran Canaria also offers high-altitude training, but it’s not as high at about half the altitude of Teide, and there’s not a hotel on the upper flanks of the volcano.
Teide is the ideal destination in part because the hotel allows mechanics and team staffers to store equipment in a shed, and the hotel makes room for the riders and accompanying chefs and soigneurs.
There are currently no rooms available at the hotel until mid-March, and rates start at about $250 a night.
A search Thursday revealed that every other hotel, inn, or private apartment located at a similar altitude high on the flanks of Teide was also booked up.
Teams are also saying that popular training periods in February are already booked out for 2024 and 2025.
Trek-Segafredo’s Jasper Stuyven was forced to find a nearby chalet because the Parador was packed out.
“There’s a race between the teams,” Stuyven told the newspaper.
The race to win the Tour de France evidently begins with the race to book rooms on the flanks of the smoldering volcano.