The Arlberg's legendary status is rooted in its storied history, geography, and extensive cable car infrastructure. No one better embodies this local pioneering spirit better than Hannes Schneider. Born in Stuben am Arlberg, he founded Austria's first ski school in St. Anton in 1921, thereby revolutionising skiing with his ‘stem christie’ technique.
The first surface lift in Austria was built in Zürs in 1937 to suit the growing number of young amateur sports enthusiasts. In the same year, the Galzigbahn became the first cable car on the Arlberg designed specifically for winter tourism.
In the 1960s and 1970s, innovators of subsequent generations established the ‘Bundessportheim’, the forerunner of today’s Ski Austria Academy, in St. Christoph. This became the most important breeding ground for new developments in skiing.
In 1951, the Interski Congress was held in Zürs for the first time, thus establishing the event as a global leader in the ski instructor community. The conference returned to St. Anton am Arlberg in 1991 and 2011.
Since being founded in 1901, Ski-Club-Arlberg athletes have won 83 combined medals at the Olympic Games and World Championships. After 26 years, the World Cup will return to Lech Zürs in November 2020.