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Reviewed 21 March 2013

Lodge was clearly a few years old and not as "pristine" as a hotel might have been, but it was clean and the apartment was very spacious for four people. The staff were friendly and very accommodating. Although it wasn't ski in/ski out accommodation, the friendly atmosphere, free shuttles to town and spacious lodgings more than made up for it.

Bar and pool table/darts upstairs. Continental breakfast with fresh cooked eggs and/or porridge. Drying room for snow gear. Washing machine. In-house Thai massage. There are a couple of restaurants within walking distance which the staff will point out, but they also run people into the main street at night if they want to go out for dinner or drinks.

Did I mention the super friendly staff???!

Room tip: We stayed in an apartment - there were two bedrooms for the four of us, and a shared bathroom and separate toilet. Shower only, no bath. Also a very decent kitchenette, plus lounge/dining with a TV and a few DVDs to choose from. It was very comfortable living for the 9 days we were there. The twin room our friends stayed in had a bath, and we heard no complaints from them about their room. Some people have mentioned having a view of Mt Yotei from their room, which is nice. However, we were mostly only in there at night anyway, and there's a great view of the mountain from the breakfast area in the morning if scenery appreciation is your thing.
Date of stay: March 2013
  • Trip type: Travelled with friends
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1  Thank Kazran
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 March 2013

What's not to like. Family-style lodge with excellent staff, facilities and atmosphere. I stayed in the bunkroom, which is well equipped compared to most backpacker/budget accommodation. Clean room, clean bedding and towels supplied and plenty of space to store gear.

Drying room for after skiing. Washing machine available for guest use for just a few hundred yen.

Location is a bit removed from Hirafu village - about 15 minutes easy walk along the main road - so if you're looking to party all night, then fall into bed, this may not be your spot. BUT if you're looking for a quiet, friendly lodge in the quiet end of town, then this is ideal. Transport around the village is fantastic - shuttle buses all the time, taxis and the lodge runs their own 'First Tracks' shuttle in the morning. Gets you to the gondola before it opens. I think it's easier to get to/from the lodge to the lifts than it is in town. If you stay right in Hirafu, you need to walk up and down the hills. I'd rather get a bus!

Breakfast was included for me, and was fine. Cereals, yoghurt, toast and eggs if you want them. Coffee, tea etc.

Bar is great, with lots of choice and very good prices. People come from neighbouring lodges to drink at the bar, play pool. and chat. Bar snacks are pretty good, and reasonably priced.

Probably the best aspect of this lodge is the staff. Easy going, ridiculously helpful and knowledgeable about the mountains and town. More than happy to help with trips into town, bookings at restaurants (over the phone can be tricky...), getting about and general advice

Massage therapy is also brilliant. You MUST do this on your rest day. Arena is fantastic, and there's no better way to spend a rest day than a visit to the Onsen, followed by an Oil or Thai massage.

Bottom line - for the money a single traveller won't find a better deal than this. For couples I suspect it's much the same too. You won't find a friendlier place on the mountain either.

Date of stay: February 2013
  • Trip type: Travelled solo
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2  Thank MattJJ_75
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 February 2013

Nice concept to discover Japan skiing village.
The staff is extremely helpful and friendly.
They can advise on everything to do around (eat out, activities etc...)
Place is clean and well located. Great bar.

Room tip: We picked the king bed with ensuite. Plenty of room and quiet. Bathroom was a bit cold and smelly from the drain. Bathtub unstable. There was a small heater but not convenient in wet room... Needs to be improved
Date of stay: January 2013
  • Trip type: Travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Krugemann
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 January 2013

We arrived late Christmas afternoon only to be invited to the family, staff & friends Christmas dinner at the neighbouring sister lodge Snowgum. Our stay only got better from there and over the 6 days we got to know all the staff who were all really accommodating and went out of their way to make all of our group feel welcomed. Every night there seem to be a event of some type put on by the lodge. Mishi and Elena put on a great & cheap set menu one night, Garry and Barry kept the draft Sapporo flowing nightly at the bar and Alan the owner organised a guests and staff pool competition against a nearby lodge. Being outside of town wasn't a problem as Barry and Garry regularly dropped anyone out to the village and it was only a 10min walk home, including the mandatory late-night-deep-fried-chicken stop in at the Lawson. We later stayed at a private lodge but we commented how we missed the communal feeling we had a Ramat. I have been to Niseko three times and hands down it has been the best place to date. It will definitely be my first place I look, next time I go back.

Date of stay: December 2012
  • Trip type: Travelled with friends
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1  Thank Ben C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 January 2013

We had heard about Ramat from friends and we were wanting somewhere with our own bathroom and not too expensive, for the family. I had read the Lonely Planet guide of Japan and Katie answered any questions I had about skiing in Japan. Our stay was early in the season, and after Katie emailed us about the amount of snow they had had prior to us leaving, we were looking forward to our time in the snow! The email also contained what was happening over Xmas while we were there. The staff- Gary, Mitchico and Katie were warm, friendly and welcoming. Nothing seemed too much to ask. Other staff from Snowgum that we saw around the place, were just the same. Gary and Katie helped build the connection to home, both being from Australia. Mitchico has the most beautiful smile and is sooo helpful. She showed me my way around the washing machine- this was good value! 200 Yen. No dryer cost- hang your clothes up in the drying room! We did not have breakfast every morning until 8.45am ( we were worried on our first morning-breakfast stops at 9am!) We were always greeted happily and could relax at breakfast beside the window, watching the snow. Our 15 and 17 year old enjoyed the freedom at night of sharing the computer, to communicate with friends. As a family at night, we would watch movies together in our room and go out for dinner. My husband and I had drinks two nights, we were staying, at the bar. Gary could even serve up my choice of cocktail! Our son hopped on the playstation when he wanted too. My daughter and I grabbed a book to read from the bookcase. Mitchico even drove us, in a small blizzard, one night to our restaurant! I really relaxed after skiing for the day, with a hot chocolate! We thoroughly enjoyed our family holiday at Ramat and the kids are talking about returning when they are older, with a group of friends! THANKS RAMAT!

Date of stay: December 2012
  • Trip type: Travelled with family
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1  Thank Kym D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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