Thinking of doing your first ski season and would like to get to grips with how it all works? You've come to the right place.
We've worked in catered chalet holidays for many years, and have done our time working for lots of other chalet holiday companies before starting our own luxury chalet holidays venture. Here's the rough guide to chalet jobs.
You might arrive into your chalet around 7am to prepare breakfast. Your guests will eat then be leaving the chalet around 9am. After clearing up breakfast then it's cleaning time. You'll clean the whole chalet top to bottom, and finally bake a cake, which you lay out as afternoon tea; a lovely welcome back to the chalet your guests find when they return after a day's skiing. You should be all done maybe around 11:30, then the time is your own to go skiing.
You might arrive back into the chalet 4:30 to 5 pm. If there's children in the chalet then you'd prepare and earlier high tea (simple, child-friendly meal) to serve maybe at 5:30, otherwise it's onto the show piece: a gourmet 3 or 4 course evening meal. You might serve this at 7.30pm, and probably be all finished up and leaving the chalet around 9.30pm.
This might be the norm for 5 days of the week. The other two days:
Transfer day - the guests can depart and arrive just about any time, and you need to scrub every inch of the chalet so it looks like it came of of the box yesterday. No skiing on transfer day, just one very long day in the chalet.
Day off - most chalet holiday companies give one day off per week.
Although it depends on the company, you'll generally hear of 3 different job titles:
In larger chalets (6+ bedrooms) or luxury catered chalets then there'll be a chalet chef. The job is almost purely cooking, and you'd be expected to have chef qualifications and/or lots of cooking experience.
In smaller chalets (3 - 5 bedrooms) there'll be a chalet host instead of a chef. This is a mixed role, cooking, cleaning and serving the guests. Experience required depends on the company. Generally you'd not be required to have any catering qualifications, though some cooking experience is normally required and you'll be given training too.
Often the role for first timers, you would be an assistant to a chalet host or chalet chef. Your job would be cleaning, serving and washing up. No experience is generally necessary; here holiday companies are looking for the right personality.
As a rule of thumb most chalet jobs will include:
Sometimes you'll also get:
Although the salaries can be low they really are just pocket money, almost all costs are covered, and a good chalet host can get good tips too.
Understandably many people have a rose-tinted view of what a chalet season can be like. Here are some things for you to think about before applying for chalet jobs.
It's mostly about being the right personality. For a holiday company then you'll be their public face, what the guests think of you is a huge factor on if they'll enjoy their holiday. So first and foremost is the personality. They'll be looking for someone that's:
For chalet hosting jobs then cooking experience is important too (lots of experience for the chef roles). It doesn't have to be in catered chalet holidays though. Indeed some companies almost prefer your experience to be outside of catered chalets, that way they can mould you into the perfect catered chalet host.
Okay that's probably more than enough information on chalet work for you. Any questions though please feel free to get in touch. We were all newbies once and we are happy to share our experiences if it helps. Enjoy your ski season & good luck!