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Hotham Lodge recs please

Discussion in 'Hotham & Dinner Plain' started by SharpShard, Apr 6, 2021.

  1. SharpShard

    SharpShard Hard Yards

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    Hi. I haven’t stayed in a lodge since the early 90’s. What’s a nice lodge in Hotham for myself and my 16 year old daughter? Thanks.
     
  2. cqen2l

    cqen2l Part of the Furniture Ski Pass: Gold

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  3. Any

    Any One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    Do you know Hotham?

    I think your preference and style will greatly depend on what you're looking for.
    Most people I've met would recommend staying at a few and get a feel for the membership and environment before investing in a lodge.

    I'm new to Hotham. my first time last year. spent the whole of last season there (in lockdown, hiking to ski, etc). So I don't know whos cool or uncool. I also dont know the internal political bs that go on at every ski resort, nor do I give a f to find out.

    I'm a member of the lodge ski club.
    It's a little bit lower class lodge than other luxury lodges. Ok rooms but shared bathrooms and showers might be a detractor for some. The living room and kitchen are adjacent making cooking and eating more a social event. I feel it has a slightly older membership, but very active members that all ski religiously. So much so that, based on this year's early bookings, you might have troubles booking the weekends you want. Actually the general felling I get is that this is true for all lodges and accommodation up here. The lodge is also completely booked out for 2 weeks during school holidays by a few schools.
    Afaik there are unused memberships in the pool available from the committee, about $5k a pop I think.
    It's right down the end of the village. I used to think that this would be harder to go skiing, but you just literally drop onto the davenport access trail, so It's almost ski out. If you're coming from big d area it's pretty flat, but they groom it all the way there for the xc skiers so it's pretty easy to skate home if you're a good skiier/medium-strong skater. Its also nice and quiet down the end of the village with only lodges nearby so more friendly lodge type of people and less tourist asshats.

    My partner is a member of Vagabond ski club.
    It's a little bit more classy, with larger rooms and ensuites in all. Having recarpeted the whole place recently is probably a key factor with its good first impressions. The living room is quite fancy with heaps of nice couches and coffee tables, but very separate from the kitchen tho. It's membership has expanded recently I think, so has a lot of younger adults with children. During last spring we had days where there were crazy waves of stair elephants charging about, pretty fun.
    I believe the same school booking from the lodge overflows to vagabond during the school holidays.
    Afaik unused memberships also available from the pool, about the same price I think too.
    It's next door to the lodge ski club, so same location notes.

    We've made friends with several people from Bembooka lodge last season.
    Same same, everyone is so friendly blah blah.
    Have only seen inside a little bit. But my 10 second impression was that it was somewhere between Vagabond and The Lodge Ski Club.
    Afiak they dont have a super active membership and rent to the public frequently, and don't have schools booking out the whole thing during the school holidays. I think member price was quite a bit more than the other two lodges. Tho I don't actually know any of that for sure.
    Its next door to Vagabond ski club, so again same location notes.

    Have met a bunch of cool people from Arrabri sk club, which I think is more of a dorm style accom. and also from Assgard, and Brush. Probably because these were the few lodges that were open during the lockdown and we played against in zoom trivia nights (which we won btw!).
    So far every member we've met at or from any lodge has been so super friendly that we really look forward to skiing with everyone. I think that is just the type of people that are attracted to lodge style of life.
    I wasn't super sure about lodge staying to begin with, its a bit more noisy, less private, etc. But the benefits of such friendly people to ski with and to show us around and making new friends outweigh any negatives.
     
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  4. Sandy

    Sandy Dark Sith Lord of the Pool Room Moderator Ski Pass: Gold

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    Yep, the members are a good bunch, and very keen..... :D
    There's a members' weekend these days, but that used to be a whole week!!
    And there's a few inbounds secret spots at Hotham...
     
    Chaeron and Any like this.
  5. MHzMe

    MHzMe Addicted

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    I would add that in addition to the style of accomodation, as mentioned by @Any the membership of a lodge may have a tendency to prefer different styles of skiing, which better align to what you are after.

    My other half is a member at Marouka. We seem to have an unusually high amount of cross country, tele and side country touring skiers in our membership, so if you are into that, it is easy to find someone to go with. We would be towards the more basic end of the luxury spectrum, with shared bathrooms and a kitchen badly in need of replacement.

    Of course if you stay at the Lodge this year, you get try Guido's pancakes on a Sunday morning!
     
    Annabuzzy and Any like this.
  6. chriscross

    chriscross One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    Valhalla is small, friendly, comfortable, well located.
     
  7. mr

    mr Part of the Furniture Ski Pass: Gold

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    We are fans of pegasus, peninsula and trapdoor, valhalla too....but im pretty happy just to be there any time i am there. All have decent facilities etc. I'd say my order i wrote them is from fanciest to most basic, and all are open to non-members booking.
     
    MAC likes this.
  8. currawong

    currawong Old but not so Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    I was happy with eumarellah when I booked as a non-member. @cqen2l can tell you more about it

    I'm pretty sure anton has memberships available. Haven't stayed there though. AIUI you can't book unless you are a member.
     
    cqen2l likes this.
  9. nezumi

    nezumi One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    Piggybacking off this, does anyone who knows the culture of the lodges have a recommendation based on the following:

    • Family of 4 (kids 5 & 1 this year) but not likely to go to Hotham until next year.
    • 1 non-downhill snowsports person, so having good communal space and access is key.
    • Ensuite bathrooms preferred.
    • Flexibility for kids to bring a friend with them each in the future.
    I'm currently leaning towards AAC Dinner Plain to allow for the potential for snowshoeing/XC skiing for my wife. This also has the benefit of the associated lodge at Perisher for lessons for the smallest participant in a few years time, but I'm definitely open to hearing from others.
     
  10. mr

    mr Part of the Furniture Ski Pass: Gold

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    We have found non-skiiers weve taken love the davenport area because its got the winter vibe a bit more than DP, and its straight off down the lovely quiet XC trail out of the wind past the poo farm to skiiers crossing, and christmas hills are lovely, all ok in snowshoes, can go to DP anyway.
     
    MHzMe likes this.
  11. mr

    mr Part of the Furniture Ski Pass: Gold

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    I'm pretty sure the OP wasnt looking for memberships, just accom in club lodges.

    We havent joined anywhere (partner family had a trapdoor membership 18+ years ago) and we just book some visits early in the year for the 6 week peak, and do the rest on the fly for how the season is going, and it mostly works out. Occasionally we end up in harrietville or myrtleford, or in a tent.

    The places i listed are the ones we mostly stay at. All are pretty good imo. We've really enjoyed raising our kids i a club lodge atmosphere
     
    nezumi likes this.
  12. mr

    mr Part of the Furniture Ski Pass: Gold

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    @nezumi with young kids staying on mountain heaps easier if you want them to ski, and you to get a ski. Often the little ones are cooked by lunchtime. if the non-skiier is in a nice place on mountain that allows flexibility throughout the day. Our kids just tobogganed etc in the arvo outside the lodge. With DP you are either there, or not, and the car is involved.
     
    Any and nezumi like this.
  13. Any

    Any One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    I wish I learned to ski at Hotham. Kids who learn at ski resorts with advanced runs/etc are such good skiers. Makes me jealous.
    Its not well known for being beginner friendly, however i thought the completely separate big d beginner area was pretty cool. I assume kids are quickly onto the hard greens/blues anyway.
    Its still friendly enough and family enough and small that the kids just go off before/after school unsupervised in rat packs jumping off every little bit they can find. Not sure you can confidently say that about Perisher :(

    true.
    but i think membership is a good option tho. just some quick napkin math, after 25 nights of 2 adults and 2 children, you would have already paid for membership.
    need to be pretty sure where you wanna be tho i guess.

    yeah the end of the village/davenport area seems to have heaps of xc skiiers. not an hour went by last season without some xc skier going past, and thats even during lockdown.
    i assume they go past the poo farm and machinery shed down to wire plain's tracks? i dont know where they go.
     
  14. mr

    mr Part of the Furniture Ski Pass: Gold

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    Yep - Christmas hills, long spur, wire plain, whisky flat, paw paw plain, dinner plain etc. Plenty of skiing that way.