The Olympics is very close to our hearts in the Haute office for a few reasons: Monica, our wedding planner, was a bilingual announcer at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Brazil & the 2014 Winter Olympics in Russia!
The very first Winter Olympics was held in Chamonix, France which is our home base. Our office has representatives from all over the world from countries like Portugal, Sweden, France, United States, Spain, and the UK. Not to mention, we all are all sports enthusiasts!
About the Olympics:
The Olympic games are the world biggest competition. Inspired by the Greek games from the 8th century, a French baron named Pierre de Coubertin founded the International Olympic Committee in 1894. This led to the first modern games in Athens in 1896.
Originally the Winter and Summer games were supposed to be held in the same country every year but logistically, as we understand very well, events take a lot of time and resources to prepare so they were soon separated into different years and countries.
In 1924, Chamonix held the very first Winter Olympics, which at the time was originally called International Winter Sports Week. This multisport event was held at the foot of Europe’s tallest mountain, Mont Blanc. Standing tall at 15,781 feet with views of Italy and Switzerland, this mountain was the perfect location for this epic event.
The first Olympics only consisted of 16 events in 5 sports: bobsleigh, curling, ice hockey, skating, and skiing. The games were organized by a French committee with the supervision of the Olympics committee.
Despite having a home turf advantage, France did not perform well at the first-ever Olympics. The Scandinavian countries Norway and Finland ranked 1st and 2nd. Norway walked away with the most medals, 17 total with 4 gold, 7 silver, and 6 bronze. While Finland won 11 medals; 4 gold, 4 silver, and 3 bronze. France unfortunately only took home 3 bronze medals.
This years 2018 Winter Olympics has an even more diverse set of events with 102 events across 15 sports. Now, they even include big air snowboarding and mixed team Alpine skiing added to the list this year.
There are a total of 2,952 athletes from 92 National Olympic Committees participating in the games this year, all with big hopes of taking home the gold. This is the first year for 6 countries including Singapore, Nigeria, and Ecuador!
Norway not only won the first Winter Olympic games in 1924 but also the most recent. In total, they won 39 medals, 14 of which are gold this year. France won 5 gold medals in biathlon, freestyle skiing, and snowboarding.
We have all enjoyed watching this year’s Winter Olympics and raise a glass to all of the hardworking and dedicated athletes who represented our home countries.