How to get there
At least seven airlines offer one-stop service from Boston to Geneva. Chamonix is about a one-hour drive south.
Where to stay
Hotel Excelsior 251, chemin de Saint-RochLe Tines
A two-star gem for $56 nightly is located 2 1/2 miles up the valley floor from Chamonix central. Pool, comfortable accommodations, shuttle service to Chamonix, and 10-star views of Mont Blanc.
62, allée du Majestic
Four-star 19th-century behemoth with pool, sauna, and a $125-nightly rate.
Where to eat
Le Matafan 4-5053-0564 (from town)
If you're staying at the Hotel Mont-Blanc, don't move a centimeter. The restaurant (again, the stuff of my dreams) is oriented around a central fireplace. Dinner fare starts at $70; the foie gras, then veal with figs, are not to be missed, according to two paragliding associates.
What to do
Summits 27, allée du Savoy
Tandem flight (requiring no experience): $107
Five-day beginner pilot course, not including lifts and insurance: $501
The summer schedule has not been finalized, but courses generally run Monday-Friday every week from late June to late September.