WHEN SKI (POLE) POSITION IS EVERYTHING
THERE’S no space to swing a (snow) cat on my balcony at Mt Hotham’s Zirky’s but, despite the lack of size, it’s my favourite spot for an early morning cuppa, perfectly placed to take in the lifts, slopes and mountain before joining the action.
Zirky’s, established in 1971 by Peter Zirknitzer, a ski champion from Austria, boasts a great central location with self-contained lodgings ranging from a studio for two to a penthouse accommodating up to 10.
My three-bedroom apartment is typical, with wellappointed kitchen, microwave, CD and DVD players (discs can be hired for $5) and flat-screen television.
There’s an abundance of seating, with a dining setting, squashy L-shaped leather lounge and breakfast bar. The hotel has its own restaurant and cafe, and there are ski lockers, drying room, ski hire and a retail store.
It’s also ski in, ski out, with two exits and entrances, one better suited to novices. A word of warning: so-called mountain prices rule at Hotham’s shops ($5.50 for a packet of biscuits), so bring your own supplies if practical.
Zirknitzer, by the way, is no longer the owner but is apparently still a regular visitor to the mountain. Barry Oliver