the Foil family

Foil Skis® was originally founded in a small village in Northeastern Italy between the Adriatic Sea and the Alps. Our love of sport, nature and movement – and our fascination with the deep connection amongst these elements, inspired us to create Foil.

Andreas Pichler, award-winning designer, artist and competitive alpine skier, embraced Foil’s legendary foundation and then, with valuable input from a team of master craftsmen, designers and athletes, shaped Foil into what it is today. Over ten years of intense analysis, development and testing has gone into Foil skis with only one goal in mind: to create a ski of World Cup performance, in perfect balance with the body, in harmony with nature and one that aesthetically celebrates the timeless beauty of skiing.

Meet Andreas

Andreas Pichler is a fifth generation artist and designer from the medieval town of Doellach in Austria.

He specializes in woodcarving, sculpture and numerous fields of design, including graphic, sound and industrial.

Throughout his successful entrepreneurial career, Andreas has created custom guitars and design concepts for companies such as Fender, Infeld, and Red Bull in addition to amplifiers for Bogner, Boutique Amps Distribution and more.  

Via one of his true passions, sculpting, he has given birth to a modernized revival of the ancient Austrian woodcarving tradition known as Krampus, where Andreas has defined the next generation of the carvings and trappings through his signature “White Mask Series.”

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This same passion for woodworking extends into furnishings where, after years of research, experimentation and innovation, Andreas formulated a new method for texturizing and finishing surfaces, which he launched through his functional art series “77SELECTION” and “77ANDREAS.”  

Parallel to his other professional activities, Andreas has performed as Art and Creative Director for major corporations, international sporting events and several motion picture studios in Los Angeles and New York.

Andreas is the driving creative vision behind Foil Skis. Building on the original formula, he has been able to translate and project the skis’ intrinsic perfection and performance into the physical form for all to see.

The timeless beauty of Foil skis is the result of Andreas’s innate understanding of art and his detailed dedication to perfection. From the skis, binding, poles and bespoke leather features, every aspect of the Foil brand must meet his standards. Andreas maintains a relentlessly clear vision for the “look & feel” of the Foil Brand. The Foil Ski package is the renaissance of what skiing was meant to be, honoring the luxury alpine lifestyle and Andreas is the guiding force ensuring the manifestation of that vison.

Meet Nikolaus

Nikolaus (Klaus) Heidegger was born August 19th, 1957 in a small farm village nestled above Innsbruck, Austria. Klaus’ father worked five days a week, but on the weekends his mother and father would work together along with the help of their three sons and a daughter, as “hobby farmers.” They grew potatoes, corn and radishes, and they raised animals such as cows and sheep. The fruits of their labor and the gifts brought forth from the land sustained them.

It was in the small rural village, surrounded by the towering Alps, pure mountain air, and a hard working family and community, where the characteristics of Klaus’ identity, focus and many passions took root.

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These defining and stabilizing elements have allowed him to thrive professionally, philanthropically and personally throughout his years to date, and remain his North Star as he navigates toward the future.

The Alps provided a backdrop of inspiration and encouraged Klaus’ love of nature and his evident desire and talent to excel at Alpine skiing. By the age of seventeen, Klaus became a member of the Austrian National Ski Team, where his accomplishments throughout his skiing career between 1977 and 1979 include, but are not limited to: 2nd overall World Cup, 2nd overall Slalom (twice), 2nd overall Giant Slalom, won the World Cups at Kitzbühel, Austria; Garmisch, Germany; Voss, Norway; Farano, Japan and Wengen, Switzerland. Klaus was also Austrian Champion in Slalom and Giant Slalom eight times. Klaus considers winning the grand slam of skiing, Kitzbühel, Wengen, and Garmisch, in the same year as his favorite moment of his ski-racing career.

Klaus met his wife Jami Morse in Austria while she was working as the team’s aerobics instructor. As do many former European ski racers, Klaus built a small hotel and café/restaurant that he and Jami ran in Axams, Austria until Jami’s father asked them to return to Jami’s native New York City, N.Y. to help her family’s business, Kiehl’s Since 1851. Jami and Klaus became the fourth-generation owners and operators of Kiehl’s; and, during their tenure, the company thrived and evolved from a successful local destination with limited distribution to an elite worldwide beauty and skin-care line. Klaus served as President of Kiehl’s from 1990 until the company sold to L’Oreal in 2000.

Jami and Klaus both share a commitment to and a love for health and fitness. This passion led Klaus to invest in a Swiss company called Masai Barefoot Technology, or MBT. These “anti-shoes” were responsible for instigating the frenzy we now call “rocker shoes,” and they can be found in hundreds of stores around the globe. MBT was sold to Berkshire Partners in 2011.

Jami and Klaus recently entered back into the beauty arena with Retrouvé, a new luxury line of bespoke skin-care products that were recently launched in Europe.

The Heidegger family generously donates a great deal of their time, energy and resources to their many philanthropic interests and pursuits; but, while Klaus was investigating and studying the inspiration for MBT (the Masai Warriors), his research of the farmers in Africa and their villages touched him deeply. He was made aware of the greatest danger to their existence and the ripple effect of devastation that will ensue when there is a lack of their most precious natural resource, water. Water is the lifeline to existence of all humanity, and these amazing, noble people needed help. Klaus devoted and donated time and funding for the building of bore holes in desolate African villages. These bore holes are dug deep into the ground and provide life-sustaining water to barren and droughty regions. Their efforts have assisted approximately seventy thousand people, and Klaus has continued to expand his reach. Along with Robert Kennedy Jr., Klaus sits on the board of the fastest-growing environmental movement today, Waterkeeper Alliance, Inc; an organization that champions clean, swimmable, drinkable, fishable waterways worldwide, whilst simultaneously protecting communities and ecosystems.

In 2013, Klaus’ autobiographical account of his life, My American Dream, that was chronicled by Austrian author and journalist Claudio Honsal was published, and it immediately rose to sixth position, on the Media Control GfK Bestseller List. The book was designed to encourage others and to show how everyone can with hard work, dedication, perseverance and resilience achieve their dreams-just as the mountain farmers’ son was able to achieve his.

Today, Klaus is thoroughly ensconced in the development of a state-of-the-art, equestrian facility and home that he is in the process of designing for his family and specifically his two daughters, Nicoletta and Hannah, who are both avid equestrians. It is on this expanse of land that he is able to express his desires for not only his family but for the world: He is in the process of creating a self-sustaining property that will be capable of generating its own power source through solar panels. The end goal is to produce enough power so the property may give back to the grid. The wells on the property will supply their own water requirements, and the home that will be built will also be an eco-friendly, green home that will have a low carbon footprint. The stables for their horses and the auxiliary buildings that have been built to date have been constructed with natural design elements, and they have a cohesive color palette, so they may blend with the natural landscape. Currently, plans are in development to utilize the abundant produce grown at the ranch so their raw ingredients may be incorporated into some of the Retrouvé products.

When Klaus isn’t watching his daughters compete in show jumping, he finds much joy in his son Max’s athletic achievements in basketball. Klaus and Jami’s dream for their children is that they may be good human beings, productive citizens with plenty of ambition to follow their own dreams. And how does a man with so many interests and demands escape, rejuvenate and recharge? Klaus still loves the adrenaline rush of speed, albeit now cycling on his road bike or flying his plane above the clouds. His favorite poem, by John Magee, Jr., articulates the feelings of solace and peace Klaus experiences in that space and time...

Up, up the long, delirious burning blue I’ve topped the wind-swept heights with easy grace Where never lark, or even eagle flew- And, while with silent, lifting mind I trod The high-untrespassed sanctity of space, Put out my hand, and touched the face of God. -John Gillespie Magee, Jr.
Arnold Schwarzenegger
Arnold Schwarzenegger
Iconic Actor, Director, former two-term governor of California and former World Champion bodybuilder.

Arnold at home, together with Klaus Heidegger and Andreas Pichler, while hosting his annual celebrity poker night benefitting After School programs for at-risk students in L.A. schools.

“Foil Skis are one-of-a-kind. I have never before seen such craftsmanship nor have I experienced such balance and ease of control on a pair of skis”
Robert F. Kennedy Jr.
Lawyer, Author, Environmental Activist and Founder of the WaterKeeper Alliance

Several members of the Kennedy family along with a long list of celebrities, athletes and politicians gather in Park City, Utah this weekend as Deer Valley Resort kicks off its winter ski season with a celebrity ski race to benefit Robert F. Kennedy Jr.’s WaterKeeper Alliance

“Skiing has always been a huge part of my life, so when my friends at Foil presented me with a pair of personalized “Riservas,” it was a special treat. Little did I know that the next day, during our celebrity races, I would be flying through those gates with a permanent smile on my face. The skis are not only elegant, they ski by themselves!”
Ben Silverman
“I met up with Andreas in the Austrian Alps. He had already told me to expect something amazing from the Foils, but having skied my whole life, I was a bit skeptical. What a mistake! The Foils were not only beautiful, they outperformed any other ski I’ve ever used, both on the groomers and off in the trees. Absolute precision with this indescribable feeling of control…!”
Ben Silverman
Award-Winning Producer, Writer, Director and Entertainment Executive

Ben Silverman is the founder and CEO of the entertainment production company Electus. From 2007-2009, Silverman served as co-chairman of NBC Entertainment and Universal Media Studios. He is also an Emmy and Golden Globe-winning executive producer of such shows as The Office, Ugly Betty, The Tudors, and The Biggest Loser.

“Under the beautiful wood finish, Foilskis are the best skis I have used in a piste, ever”
Inge Solheim
Adventurer, Polar Guide and Public Speaker

Inge’s main focus is to take people on bespoke expeditions, helping other people to realize their potential and their goals. He is considered to be one of the world’s leading guides.

Nick Saunders
“I never used to think that I skied enough to truly tell the difference between skis, but after just a few runs on Foil, I knew immediately that these are heads above all the rest!”
Nick Saunders

Film, Television and Branded Content Producer

Hank Kashiwa
“It has been quite some time since any company has brought revolutionary ski technology to the marketplace. I love my Foil skis and find them to be extraodinarly responsive and stable, skiing on them makes it feel like you are one with the snow! They are the best all mountain ski I have used in off piste skiing as well as in groomed conditions. The care and craftsmanship with which they are made is non existent by today’s standards!” Hank K.
Hank Kashiwa
Former U.S. Olympian and World Pro Skiing Champion - Ambassador of skiing and marketing executive at the Yellowstone Club, Montana

Kashiwa has since had a long career in the ski industry. He has served as a ski commentator for television and later became the President of Volant, a Colorado ski manufacturer. He left that position to become vice-president of marketing for the Yellowstone Club, a private ski area and golf club near Big Sky, Montana.

Kevin Roop
Kevin Roop
Manager, Coach, Instructor, personal trainer,
Vail Valley, Colorado USSA, PSIA, NASM.

Kevin Roop explodes through a stash of powder in the Stone Creek chutes, Beaver Creek Mountain’s new extreme terrain.
(Shane Macomber/ Vail Daily)

“Just went out for an afternoon burner on the Foils!! Smoothest high performance luxury pair of boards I have ever skied!! Handled the hard snow like a race ski and surfed the corn with elegance. Never been on a ski that can be so damp and forgiving, while still having stability at high speed!!”