Facilities & Services
The services, facilities and hospitality at Appi Kogen
are exceptional. The Resort Centre and Appi Plaza have extensive facilities for day trippers, and there are further amenities at the Appi Grand Hotel and the villas.
The quality of the services and facilities is somewhat symbolised by the presence of high pressure air hoses at the front of the ski-in entrance to the Appi Grand Hotel
. These are fantastic to blow the snow off your equipment and boots (and also to scare an unsuspecting mate!). These air hoses are typically only found in very upmarket ski resorts.
Facilities for Children
Appi Kogen is a pretty good Japanese ski resort for families with small children.
Firstly the Appi Family Park is very impressive. Conveniently situated in front of the Hotel Appi Grand, the fenced off park provides buckets of fun for kids. In addition to lots of playground equipment, the park has magic carpets to service tubing, tobogganing, and skiing. The park is open during the day (except from 12-1pm). The family park attracts a small fee for kids aged 3 and over.
Child care is available in the Appi Plaza for children aged 1-10 years old. It’s reasonably inexpensive. The only potential limitation is that child care is not provided from 12 noon to 1:30pm so you have to pick up the kids for lunch. Reservations are highly recommended.
A good place to take the little kids for lunch is Makibu Hall in the Appi Resort Centre. They serve a variety of kids’ meals and have an indoor play area with lots of toys and equipment.
Additionally, Appi frequently has different family oriented festivals and events.
Appi Kogen Ski School and Snowboard School
In addition to private ski and snowboard lessons, the Appi Kogen ski school now has group lessons with English speaking instructors. Kids group lessons are for ages 7 to 14, whilst adult lessons are for ages 15+. Classes have a maximum of 6 students per group, and are either 2 hours or 4 hours in duration. It’s best to pre-book group lessons because there are a limited number of English speaking instructors. NB group lessons do not operate over the New Year’s period.
Appi Kogen Ski Rentals and Snowboard Hire
Appi Kogen has a large ski and snowboard rental shop at the Resort Centre as well as rental stations at the Hotel Appi Grand and Appi Grand Villa 3. The rental gear is mainly Salomon and Atomic and is reasonably new. Equipment includes a large range of skis, snowboards, boots, snow clothing, and accessories such as goggles and gloves.
They cater well to Westerners and have clothing and boots in sizes that range from small kids up to XXXL adults. They have a range of powder skis for rent, and have an Unlimited Pass which allows you to change the skis or snowboard as often as you like so that you can demo various models.
Eating On Mountain / Lunch Time Restaurants
Appi Kogen has a large range of options to choose from for a lunch-time feed.
The Sailer Restaurant is on-mountain at the base of the Sailer gondola and serves up the usual cafeteria fare such as ramens and curries. During regular season it’s only open on weekends and holidays.
The Red House (which is purple in colour!!) is located mid-mountain and serves similar food.
If beginners’ legs get weary whilst tackling the 5.5km Yamabato Run, there’s the Nishi Mori rest house half way down.
At the base area there is a huge food court with various different food outlets. Options include Chinese noodles, curry, pizza, spaghetti, Korean fare, ramen and other Japanese cuisine. The Resort Centre also has eateries including a sandwich bar and café, a family restaurant (Makiba), and a crepe stand. There’s also Nirvana, an Indian restaurant that serves up inexpensive curry sets with over-sized naan bread.
If you’ve been burning up plenty of energy on the slopes, you can get a big lunch time feed at the Hotel Appi Grand. The great value for money buffet includes a huge range of curries, pasta and gelati. Yum! There’s also an Italian buffet at the Appi Grand Villa 3.
For something very different, you can have lunch in one of the igloos (kamakura) on Sundays and holidays. Here they serve up cheese fondue or warm pork and tomato stew. Really yum! Reservations are required.
Budget reasonably well prior to visiting because Appi does not have an ATM that accepts international cards. Luckily lots of places at Appi accept credit card.
There is access to an ATM in Morioka at the post office near the train station.
The Appi Grand Hotel has a special service for English speaking guests. The hosts can assist with enquiries and provide concierge services.