Is this your proper Job? A question asked a thousand times, to a thousand expats, living and working in the French Alps.
Well, for some, it is.
From time to time, we've all sat and wondered what it would be like to sack in the rat race, pack up our belongings and head off abroad to live the dream.
Rewind 12 years and this couple did exactly that. Jon and Lisa Dodd, founders and managers of Ride & Slide, left their lives in the UK and did what most of us could only dream of. They started a new business and new life in the French mountain resort of Morzine.
The resort boasts a thriving chalet industry, lead by creative entrepreneurs, a large number of whom are from the UK. So what makes Ride & Slide different? They were amongst the first.
12 years and 2 children later, the couple and business have grown and evolved, and as such, it was time for a change.
Same People | Same Service | New Name
Ride & Slide proudly announced that from Autumn 2016, they will be known as R&S Chalet Collection - offering an exciting, fresh new look, to more accurately reflect the business as it is today.
So who are R&S? Let's take a moment to meet the owners.
When did you arrive in Morzine?
We first drove into Morzine on Monday 1st December 2003.
The original plan was to 'do a season', with the hope that we would, at some point, realise our ambition of opening a chalet company and living the dream.
So what did you do before? What were your 'proper jobs'?
Two very different career paths - Lisa was a long-term detective in the Metropolitan Police and I (Jon), had a variety of office-based careers, ending as an IT consultant.
What inspired you to set up a chalet company? Combining work and play? Living the dream?
The 'play hard' thing was never really our style. Work hard, yes. Play hard, not really. More like, play a bit, but make sure we can deliver on what we wanted to offer. Living the dream was part of it but the main inspiration was that we just wanted to offer people the type of holiday that we wanted ourselves, but couldn't find!
Now you have 2 little girls. Is raising a family in the mountains whilst running your own business hard?
Raising a family is hard whatever your state of employment! Add in running a business sure doesn't make things any easier, but it's all achievable and makes it all the more rewarding.
What are your biggest business challenges?
The biggest challenge in the chalet industry is staying ahead of the game. We've been operating for coming up 12 years and in that time, we've seen huge changes in offerings. We've always strived to be one step ahead of our competitors and are pleased to see so many of our ideas and innovations now being widely embraced by the industry.
What are your proudest business moments?
Hosting team Sky for the 2010 Tour de France was an absolute highlight of our business to date. Being recognised as offering a standard, suitable for one of the world's most successful cycling teams, made us incredibly proud. Being avid cycling fans, hosting the likes of Sir Bradley Wiggins was just an added bonus and great honour.
In addition, achieving over 190 independent 5-star guest reviews on Trip Advisor website makes us not just proud of our business, but also or our team members and guests! We feel that it represents a true reflection of not only how hard we have worked on creating our business, but also how hard our teams have worked in delivering our offering.
So what inspired the new look? Why change now?
Our vision for R&S has evolved over the 12 years we have operated and the new look is our latest iteration of this. The time was right for the next move and we feel our new look brings us bang up to date, shifting our image to be in-line with our service offering.
What makes R&S different?
In a few words, professionalism, dedication and commitment. Our one goal is to provide the best chalet experience possible for our customers and we have been committed to achieving this since our inception.
What does the future hold?
Lots of things! One thing we have insisted upon is the gradual growth of our business. We have seen countless rivals come and go; expanding rapidly and then falling away, leaving their loyal customers disappointed. We now have 4 stunning catered chalets on offer and who knows when this will change. The only thing to be sure of is that if we do add a chalet or change our offering, it will be of the same exceptional standard and style that has served us so well.
If you would like to find out more about R&S Chalet Collection, or to book your next holiday with them fill in the contact form below or -
Follow - @rschaletcollection