Les Diablerets: from the Middle Ages to today
During the Middle Ages, in 515, the Ormonts Valley was mentioned for the first time in an act in which the King of Burgundy, Saint Sigismond, gave up the Ormonts Valley and other lands to St-Maurice Abbey. In 1034, following the death of Rodolphe III, the last Burgundian king, the Ormonts Valley fell under the domination of the House of Savoy. Then, in 1231, the Count of Savoy exchanged the lands and the people of Les Ormonts against the lands and people of Saillon. Finally in 1277, Jacques IV of Saillon, the Lord of Aigle, liberated his men from Ormont-Dessus. The first freedom charter on February 2, 1279 confirmed this gesture. The first traces of two villages go back to this time: Les Diablerets and Vers l’Eglise.
In 1464, during the wars of Burgundy, the Bernese conquered the Ormonts Valley, Aigle, Bex and Ollon. In 1475, Les Ormonts became part of Bern which lasted for longer than did the Savoyard regime. During the same year, the Council of Bern confirmed the customs and privileges of the Ormonts Valley. In 1798, the Vaudois and French military troops seized the Ormonts Valley during the Battle of Tréchadèze. From that time onwards, Ormont-Dessus became part of the future state of Vaud. The acquisition took place by force because the Ormonans, who were used to living under the benevolent Bernese regime, defended their heritage when the franco-vaudoises bullied them In 1839, the stretch of road from Aigle to Le Sépey was opened to traffic, which allowed relations to be strengthened between Ormont-Dessus and the valley due to wood and cattle trading, but also due to the flow of foreign visitors in summer. As a result of this, the Hôtel des Diablerets, the name given to the view over the Diablerets range was opened in 1856. It was one of the first hotels in the Vaudois Alps. The resort took off. The opening of this road also allowed for the establishment of the postal service which began seriously in 1839. In 1855, the second stretch of the Sépey – Les Diablerets road was completed, and then in 1882, the road to Gstaad opened, crossing the Col du Pillon.
The village which consisted of hamlets, then saw the construction of hostels and holiday chalets and little by little transformed itself into a veritable tourist linked named Les Diablerets in 1905. The construction and opening of the Aigle-Sepey-Les Diablerets railway in 1914 helped to cement the tourism fate of Les Ormonts. In winter 1909-1910, for the first time the hotels in the valley welcomed new guests – fans of winter sports. The first teleski at Vioz (in the Meilleret area) was built in 1942 and was followed by the Isenau gondola in 1953. In 1964, they built the Glacier des Diablerets cableway. Winter tourism grew little by little in relation to the economy in the Ormonts Valley. Today, the population has not fluctuated much in the past few years and totals around 1400 inhabitants hosting nearly 8000 people during the high season. For its part, tourism largely depends on the life of the pastures, the magnificent landscapes and local produce in summer. On the other hand, winter tourism is more demanding in terms of infrastructure.