This is the first in our series where we talk to some of the people that work, often behind the scenes, to make La Tania and Courchevel function like a well-oiled machine. How long the series will be depends on who we can persuade to talk to us!
Our first victim is Guillaume Berlioux, Ski School Director Oxygène la Tania & Courchevel
There are good reasons why we’re partnered with Oxygène. Ever since we have been coming to La Tania, we have been impressed by the level of service that they give to everyone, whether they are resort workers or guests. They offer a very personal service, specialising in group lessons taught in English as well – we have always found their instructors inspiring.
And last but not least, they offer our guests a 10% discount!
Jonty: Thanks very much for being our first victim Guillaume! Tell us a bit about background. How did you come to be working as an instructor for Oxygène?
Guillaume: I was born in Echirolles near Grenoble and started skiing at 2 and half years old! As a youngster I competed in ski competitions and dreamed of becoming a ski instructor. I started my instructor diploma at 17 and then started teaching skiing in Valfréjus before moving to work as an instructor for Oxygène in Val D’isere for 6 years. I was given the opportunity to manage the new Oxygène ski school in La Tania and now I look after the overall management of Oxygène in Courchevel and La Tania while still having the possibility to pursue my passion of teaching skiing and snowboarding.
Jonty: What does a typical day in your life look like?
Guillaume: I get to the ski school office by 8am to organize the day of the ski school and the instructors and at 9am I leave to teach skiing or snowboarding. After lessons I am back in the office to catch up on admin and see how our team in our Oxygène clothing store are doing. When work is over I enjoy going for a drink with my team in the Ski Lodge or a game of darts in the Elephant in Le Praz.
Jonty: What’s the best thing about working for Oxygène?
Guillaume: There is a very good atmosphere with the team. More than a ski school, Oxygène focuses on the individual skills of each instructor and we love the enjoyment our students get learning with us – those happy smiles keep us going all season!
Jonty: And dare I ask, the worst thing?
Guillaume: The end of the winter season!
Jonty: Great answer! Skier or snowboarder? Why?
Guillaume You can’t make me choose! I love all ways of getting down the mountain! You can also find me piloting a handi-ski or teaching disabled students to get the most out of the mountains.
Jonty : Do you have a favourite piste in les Trois Vallées? If so, what makes it so special?
Guilaume: Follière the blue trail that goes back down to La Tania because there are a lot of changes in the terrain and it is in the forest – I love it.
Jonty: Last question, Guillaume. What’s your favourite mountain restaurant and why?
Guillaume: La Ferme d’Arriondaz in Courchevel Moriond because it’s authentic, no fuss, the menu is very simple : Savoyard fondue with the cheese from the farm and the old fashioned recipes and homemade charcuterie, or omelette and salad. Shhhh, don’t tell everyone!
Jonty: Thank you very much for your time, Guillaume. I’m looking forward to getting back to La Tania and hearing some glowing reviews about Oxygène from our guests.