This month Luke caught up with The Orchards concierge Matt Grech to let you know a little about him.
Shrewsbury, Shropshire, England
24 years old
Concierge at The Orchards Niseko
I spent the summer working as a cocktail barman in a top Hotel in the UK. Before that I spent the winter working as head chalet host in a chalet in Val d'Isère, France. A couple of the guys that I worked with had spent some time snowboarding in Japan and they managed to convince me there really is no better place to find powder and that I had to sample the pow for myself.
The best part of living and working in Niseko is how easily accessible the mountain is and the range of snowboarding on offer. You could spend the morning thrashing through the powder in the Annupuri back bowls, the afternoon practising your tricks in the Hanazono park and the evening getting those Euro carves down to perfection on the Hirafu pistes during night skiing. I also love how much everything in Japan revolves around eating!
I flew straight from the UK to Niseko so haven't had the chance to travel yet, however I'm planning to spend the next few months working my way south through Japan. I'm hoping to spend time in cities like Tokyo and Osaka but I also want to learn more about Japan's history so places such as Kyoto, Nara and Hiroshima are also on my list. After that I plan on moving to the southern islands to enjoy the summer!
For Japanese food - Yoteimaru for Sushi train and Mina Mina for Yakitori, but I am completely addicted to the food trucks in Hirafu and I make a journey to the Pizza Roll van on almost a weekly basis. No regrets.
I really love Strawberry Fields first thing in the morning or the Mihirashi trees if it is busy in Hirafu. Outside of Niseko, Rusutsu is my favourite resort I've been to.
Get up early! The queues for the lifts first thing in the morning can be long (especially in Hirafu) but its always worth getting up an extra 15mins early to make sure you make the most of the powder.
After travelling Japan I plan on seeing some of Australia and New Zealand before heading back to the UK.
Thanks Matt. MnK thanks you for your continued work and we wish you all the best in your travels later this year!