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Find a Ski Resort Job

By: Anna Warren

George and I have a passion for the mountains. When we are surrounded by tall snow capped peaks, something changes in us, the only way we can describe it is that we 'feel alive'. But I grew up in a large industrial town in between Liverpool and Manchester, surrounded by concrete and motorways, so how did I end up running a mountain holiday business?
It all began when I applied for a campsite job in France, with a friend of mine, which I unfortunately missed the interview for. However, the same company offered me an interview for a chalet girl position. Excited by a world of snow and sport which I had never heard of before I decided to attend the interview. It was a group event with lots of role play and discussion of menu plans. Everyone else was as new to the experience as I was and were discussing which resorts they'd like to work in, names of French and Italian sounding towns that I'd never heard of were flying around the room as we sat down to watch a video. The video showed the beautiful pristine snow and chocolate box wooden chalets with roaring open fires, and the company staff wearing huge smiles and sun kissed cheeks looked happy and exhausted. Decision made I wanted a chalet job and I wanted it yesterday.
In no time at all I was heaving my three suitcases toward a rather dismayed looking bus driver "I am going for six months!" I tried to explain as he eyed my luggage. As Manchester grew smaller and in the distance I began a conversation with a very good looking chap on the seat in front of me called George.

He was telling me all about his first season in Alpe D'Huez where he worked as a dish peg in a ski hotel. The bus filled up and after twenty four hours of non-stop partying we arrived en France.
After four days of intensive training I had acquired new found cleaning skills (my parents would be shocked), a knack for cooking good chalet food, a fire safety certificate and a basic food hygiene certificate, now all I needed was to learn how to ski! On the final night we were all told of which chalets we would be working in for the season, I was to stay in Alpe D'Huez where our training week had been, and George was to work in a large chalet in Meribel. After getting to know him for the week I knew I wanted to get to know him a little more, so worked a weeks notice and took a bus to Meribel (with my three suitcases) and went to find a job with George.
Luckily for us we landed a wonderful chalet host position in a luxury five star chalet, working alongside a Finnish chef and an Australian driver. And this is where it began, I had the most amazing adventure of my life. I learnt about looking after guests, serving fine cuisine, discussing French wines, drinking French wines, snowboarding, aprÃ?s ski, burning the candle at both ends, getting up at silly o'clock for changeover day and generally having a lifestyle that I just didn't know existed! My circle of friends had grown to include a chalet chef, a nanny, ski technician and resort accountant.
Determined to continue with this new found lifestyle George and I have since worked from one travel job to the next, always seeking our next adventure. However, as time has gone on we have acquired 'stuff', and don't want to live in shared accommodation anymore. So for the last couple of years we have 'gone and gotten a normal job'. When I was sat at the 'Rond Point' at 4pm on a Tuesday afternoon, my legs aching form my snowboarding adventures, and the toffee vodka warming me up, I thought to myself my careers advisor never told me about his little secret, but I wanted to tell the world. I felt so lucky to have discovered 'being a saisonnaire' that I wanted to make sure everyone; even city teenagers who don't even know what mountains look like, to have the chance to go and do a ski season. So we developed www.workthemountain.com.
This website enables potential candidates to register and upload a photo and CV. Employers can then browse applicants to search for that special person who can run their chalet, be a nanny to their guests' children, cook delightful chalet cuisine, and rep their guests so that they have the best chalet holiday ever. Applicants are contacted securely through the website so that no personal information is given out. Employers can also upload jobs and specify the resort and position they wish to fill. Both applicant and ski job vacancy can be featured and promoted to all those who visit the site. The design and feel of the site is about being easy and simple to use, but to give a hint of the buzz and excitement of being in resort. We really hope that www.workthemountain.com becomes the number place for people to find their next mountain adventure.

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