It won the 2010 prize from many much more high profile and larger UK tour operators, registering a satisfaction rating of 98.7% in a poll of 20,000 readers in what was the 24th year of the UK's longest running independent travel awards.
Peak Retreats, the specialist for winter holidays in unspoilt, traditional villages in the French Alps, has for the second year running won the prestigious Best Ski Operator in the annual Guardian Travel Awards.
The Guardian said: ""For the second year, Peak Retreats, which looks beyond the big resorts and takes its guests to smaller, more authentic French villages, wins the day."
Xavier Schouller, who sold his own home to set up Peak Retreats with his partner Nathalie Soma in Portsmouth in 2002, said: "It's a huge honour for a small, niche operator to be recognised in this way especially for two years running. We are incredibly proud."
Peak Retreats has helped British skiers 'discover' the real France and resorts generally ignored by the big name operators such as Samoëns, Notre-Dame de Bellecombe, Sainte Foy, Morillon and Termignon. These and the other 35 resorts it is featuring for winter 2010 offer huge advantages over more famous 'commercialised' resorts being not just cheaper and more pleasant to stay in, but with the added benefit of having queue-free, high speed cable car links to the major ski areas making them ideal back-door resorts.
Another key to success has been in providing the new generation of more spacious and comfortable self catering accommodation, with the majority of apartment residences having indoor pools and leisure facilities.
"When we started some may have seen it as a gamble, but it's clearly paid off and our clients thank us for offering them an alternative to the big name mass tourism resorts to be found in France," said Mr Schouller. "With a dedicated team we make it our priority to ensure our clients get the personal service they deserve which leads to lots of repeat business. They also have the confidence in their holidays being fully ABTA bonded to offer complete financial protection."
Due to the success of Peak Retreats, Ski Collection was formed as a sister company in 2005. Ski Collection specialises in 3 and 4 star self-catering ski apartments in the main ski resorts in the Northern and Southern French Alps, as well as the better value for money resorts in the Pyrenees.
Peak Retreats can be found at www.peakretreats.co.uk or call 0844 576 0123 (023 9283 9310).
Ski Collection can be found at www.skicollection.co.uk or call 0844 576 0175 (023 9289 0960).