You know my feelings about chalet slaves (if not, find out here http://tinyurl.com/6hxuu8m). I’ve never wanted to be one, and I’m not the greatest fan of chalets either, even though I understand the appeal and realise many holidaymakers couldn’t do without this very British set-up. Anyway, in case you know a brave person who dreams of baking a daily cake, hosting a dinner party each night, making beds and cleaning loos, all for a chance to whizz up the mountain from 11 till 3.30 and collect a few quid a week, here’s a heads-up about a slightly unusual opportunity.
The seasonal jobs agency Natives.co.uk has launched a Facebook competition called “Who wants to be a Seasonnaire”? The “winner” will land a job at a chalet “in one of Europe’s premier resorts such as Val d’Isere or Meribel” plus a place worth £599 on the Natives cookery course (think leek and roquefort tart and sole meuniere) and £200 of vouchers for Dare2be gear (think midlayers, baselayers, windshells and all those clever things that weren’t invented back in the day).
Applicants can bypass the usual interview process by posting applications to the Natives Facebook page – by video, if they wish – by 11 July (next Monday). Natives will draw up a shortlist, then the fun starts, as fans of the Natives.co.uk page (and there are 3,234 of them as I write) will carry out “interviews”: each finalist will have 24 hours to answer a raft of questions and challenges set by the Facebookers. Finally there will be voting, and the chalet-host-to-be will be revealed on 1 August.
The interesting thing is that the job is with Skiworld, a large and established chalet operator that you may remember rocketed to notoriety in 1998 after the BBC fly-on-the-wall “documentary” War and Piste, which focused on its chalet boys staggering around in Val d’Isere before and during monumental hangovers. Thankfully for Skiworld, as this article – http://tinyurl.com/6hf35gj – shows, it turned out to be a case of any publicity being good publicity. Another article I found online, from The Independent (http://tinyurl.com/6ekpygv), reveals how the docu-soap indirectly led to the founding of Natives.co.uk. So the companies have a history together.
Good luck, then, to all aspirant chalet hosts – the competition can be found here: https://www.facebook.com/natives.co.uk. And for those who don’t enter but feel they can do a good Chris Tarrant, why not throw in a few questions or challenges to the finalists? (Just don’t mention War and Piste.)
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