Chalet Host

Chalet Girl chalet host

Chalet Host jobs in a ski resort

Well you have all seen the movie Chalet Girl , but what in reality is this job all about when doing it for the season ?

Most chalet companies will be looking for someone who can look after a whole chalet on their own and if that’s the case then you can expect to be doing everything from brining in the wood for the fire to producing canapés for 14 before serving dinner !

In larger chalets you may well work with a chalet Chef , but the majority of the description below applies too.

What to expect as a Chalet Host

What you can expect though is a physically demanding job , yes you will be getting up before the sun comes up ( and if you only just got in , then that’s gonna hurt ) .Working all morning in the chalet and then back at work around 5pm to get afternoon tea cleared up and dinner on the go ;not to mention shopping day .You have to do all that but also head down to the local hypermarche and do battle with all the other chalet staff !

Basic Skills

First things first … you are going to need some catering skills and we are not talking about a few shifts at Maccy D’s here , chalet companies and their guest are looking for a tasty , balanced menu that you would be proud to serve at a dinner party , because that is effectively part of your role : hosting a dinner party 6 nights a week for a whole season ! Attending a chalet catering course can be a great idea , these are often run in the Alps during the summer months and can be rolled into a weeks holiday out there , Cool Ski Jobs will be organising these from May onwards along with UK based courses in August & September ; at the same time you should also take ( and pass ) your Food Hygiene Certificate Level 2 , these two qualifications will put you head and shoulders above the rest of the applicants that are looking for a ski job this winter.

afternoon tea in the chalet

Afternoon tea for your guests

Day to day jobs

That’s the bit we can teach you … but you are going to need a fair amount of common sense , a good attitude to work , the ability to work unsupervised and bundles of energy ! Have a look at a general list of things you could be expected to do in your Chalet :

  • Making Breakfast ( up V early )
  • Bake Cake for afternoon tea
  • Clean all public areas of chalet (including the toilets )
  • Making all the beds
  • Prep for this evenings dinner
  • Order wine from chalet manager ?
  • Go out skiing !
  • Clean up afternoon tea
  • Prep evening dinner
  • Wash up afterwards
  • Let guests know about your day off
  • Have you got all you need for tomorrows food
  • Take the rubbish out / recycle all glass
  • Go out for a beer with your guests !

 

On top of that daily list you can expect to go shopping , clear all the snow from your chalet , do inventories for the chalet manager etc etc

Fringe Benefits

So do you still think that you can handle it ? Well of course it’s not all hard work .. you generally get a chance to go skiing for 4/5 hours a day , 4 days a week plus you get a day off too ! The team that you work with can end up being your best buddies for ever .. I’m still best mates with some from 1994/5 !

You can expect to get the standard pay structure , which is generally French minimum wage , although once you have had deductions for flights/retainers /uniform / food / lodging etc you are left with maybe £80-£100 a week , but that’s all you need .. everything else is provided for you and if you treat your guests well and do a good job then the chalet hosts tips can be great !

Think that this could be for you ? .. Well don’t just sit there.. sign up for our Job Alerts and lets get you out on the slopes !

Latest chalet host jobs can be found here 

Ski chalet host , a day in the life (part 1)

A day in the life of a chalet host

What is it really like to be a ski chalet host in the alps?

6:30am and the alarm’s going off , turn that racket off ! Then the phone alarm starts going ( always good to  have two alarms , especially after last nights antics ) .A quick view of myself in the mirror versus time left for a shower means it’s on with the company beanie ,get dressed and run round to the chalet .

YES it’s snowing big pizza flakes , which is a double edged sword as I am going to have to dig my way into the chaletchalet host digging snow  . So 10 minutes later and with a little help from the baker as he delivered the morning baguettes and I am into my chalet.I discover the guests had a little party last night , clearly wine & cheese was on “their” menu . Anyhow , get on with it and it’s:

  • Porridge on the hob
  • Eggs boiling ( 6 minutes for a soft egg at this altitude)
  • Cereals / jam & bread out
  • Coffee on (thank god)
  • Started baking the afternoon tea ,today it’s going to be lemon drizzle cake

And it’s only 7:45am ! If it all goes smoothly I be out by 10:30.The mountains are calling me .

The next 60 minutes are all about getting the guests fed , and out of the ski chalet. It’s all about making sure the breakfast fills them up , they find all the lost goggles/gloves/children and piste maps. Do they know where they are meeting the ski guide ?  have a great day guys and see you in the bar for après ski !

Finally you have the chalet to yourself

So with the chalet empty , turn up the dodgy French radio and get cleaning bogs & beds , clean breakfast , lay the table for afternoon tea , order more wine from the chalet manager for tonight ( naughty guests !) ,sweep , mop , clear more snow !

10:40am and I am outta here , text my mates , ski gear on sharpish , sandwich made and stuffed in my ski jacket . If you can accomplish all that and make it on the hill by 11am , that’s a winner.

Time to hit the slopes

You now get to spend the day with your buddies  riding the slopes and face-planting in powderface-plant in the snow .Digging myself out of tree holes , eating a squashed sandwich on a freezing chairlift , a quick vin chaud , more  laps of our fav tree run then a little cheeky après ski for an hour ( really wish I had peeled all the veg for tonight !)

To be continued in part 2

Top tips to get a ski job

Ski Jobs and how to find them

Signing up for ski job boards

Ensure you have got the ski job adverts coming into your inbox every week .Sign up to the relevant websites job boards and this should be automatic for you . On Coolskijobs.com when you apply for a job you are automatically added to our job searchers list ( you can unsubscribe at anytime ).

Follow recruiters on social sites

To keep a close eye on the most recent ski jobs always follow ski recruitment companies on all of their social sites. Such as Twitter , Facebook , Instagram and Google+ , many companies will post their last minute ski jobs here first.

Attend the ski show to look for ski jobsLondon Ski Show

Head to the Ski Show armed with copies of your CV , remember though you need to be well presented.You want to give yourself the best chance of securing a last minute job . Ski chalet companies are still looking for staff at this time of the year (see below) and the best time to get there is bright and early , that way it gives you a chance later in the day to meet your buddies for a drink or two.

Keep an eye out for us at the show , if you are there than just give us a shout on twitter with the hashtag #coolskijobsbattersea , you may even find us in the bar for a drink (towards the end of the day) .

Tignes in Autumn

Tignes in the Autumn

Well the snow is falling in the Alps , we were out in Tignes and Courchevel yesterday. We met up with some key people , there are a lot of tour operators still looking for chalet hosts , chalet chefs , childcare , transfer drivers etc . As we left the temperatures dropped and the snowflakes started to fall . There are lots of skiers are up on the Tignes glacier currently on courses and race training .There was a real buzz in the air along with the smell of sawdust , paint  and varnish !

Good luck this winter in finding your Cool Ski Job !

 

 

 

 

Christmas Dinner Top Tips

Ski Chalet Christmas dinnerCooking Christmas dinner in your ski chalet

Right then , do not panic ! Just because you are cooking your first Christmas lunch ever and you are doing it for 12 guests in a kitchen. I know you have only just walked into  it a week ago and its at altitude. We are here to help you get through it without waking up face down in a bar after getting the sack !

Top tips on cooking Christmas lunch

Christmas dinner checklistFirstly  you need to check you have everything you need so write a list. Work through the menu first, from canapes , starters , main course , pudding and then onto coffees. Break this down into everything you will need to complete each part of the menu. you will need to include everything from pots & pans ( is the roasting tray big enough ? ) to all the ingredients ( including oils , butters etc ) .

How do chefs get it right every time ?

The most important aspect of cookery is timing , this runs true from professional kitchens to the simple cafe and you are no different. So working backwards from what time you are expecting to have pudding build an image of what time the main course should be served. Remember to leave yourself time in between courses to clear away  and plate up the following course.

Now look at the timings for cooking the turkey

Approximate Roasting Times for Unstuffed Turkey
Turkey Weight
Hours
6 to 8 pounds2-1/2 to 3 hours
8 to 12 pounds3 to 4 hours
12 to 16 pounds4 to 5 hours
16 to 20 pounds5 to 5-1/2 hours
20 to 24 pounds5-1/2 to 6 hours

Remember these times are for an un-stuffed turkey ( cook your stuffing separately its easier ) at sea level, so depending on your altitude you will need to increase these times. Always allow your turkey to rest for at least 90 minutes  before you carve it, in my opinion I would aim to cook the turkey in the morning once the guests have gone out skiing and you are tidying up after all the unwrapping of Xmas pressies. Make your gravy from the juices and any stock you have built up during the week . Reheating the turkey can be achieved in a roasting tin with some of the gravy covering the meat and tightly sealed with foil , place this in the oven about 60 minutes before you are going to serve it.

cooking Christmas sproutsCooking your Christmas vegetables

Sprouts are a must have on Christmas day , cook these the day before for 8-10 mins (depending on altitude ) and then plunge them straight into icy cold water to halt the cooking. Drain the sprouts and dry off nicely, store in a cling-filmed container and throw into boiling water for 2 minutes just before you serve the main course.

For your roast parsnips (panais in French) , par boil these before putting in the oven to roast , leave them in nice big pieces, that way if you leave them in a little too long they will not dry out .

Classic roast potatoes

There are a million recipes for the perfect roast potato, my trick is par boil in salted water for about 10 minutes , just enough so they give a little on the outer edge but are uncooked in the middle. Place them back in the dry pan and give a shake to fluff up the edges, sift a little flour over them as you shake them around, this will make them extra crispy. Place a large roasting tin in the oven with olive oil or goosefat ( if you can get it ) , add your potatoes to the red hot fat along with 5/6 bashed cloves of garlic and some sprigs of rosemary. Then whack ’em in the oven for a good 45 minutes on 220C for the first 20 minutes .Try to get a single even layer of potatoes ( use 2 trays if you have to) .

Final advice for Christmas day in your ski chalet

Make sure you get your table laid nice and early , that way you will stop the guests from  using it to play games etc , which could seriously mess up your timings .

Don’t start drinking too early ! believe me I have made that mistake, you do not want to ruin the guests  christmas and end up at chalet Gatwick for boxing day ! Remember that the guests are all having the best christmas. They have been skiing , had a couple of cheeky xmas apres ski drinkies and looking forward to a wonderful week with their family , so they are in a good mood. Just relax , run through your timings 2/3 times in your head .. add 5 minutes on here and there to allow for little mistakes and enjoy yourself.

Any problems just tweet us on Christmas day with the hashtag #Xmaspanic