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It's sad that I feel I have to do this but I'm closing this thread now, for hopefully obvious reasons.   If anyone needs to actually discuss the "Cost of living in Niseko" more - or of course any of

I was living quite comfortably on 3000Y a day. Some days I probably spent less than that to be honest. Valumart will be your saviour, I bought a heap of fruit, vegetables and supplies once a week and

I've heard that about food from several people. The cost of living in Australia sounds savage.

Yes your quite correct but you can pick up a Moiwa season pass for Y38.000 and that would be the best in Niesko for price but the feedback I get about Niseko is it full of Foriegnor. This may be the reason but Norikura is Y35,000 and Cortina Y30,000 (Hakuba)
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Compared to AU food and alcohol is dirt cheap in japan. Like half price or less.

 

I've heard that about food from several people. The cost of living in Australia sounds savage.

No it about the same over all. The Meat (Beef, Chook,Lamb), veg and fruit are way cheaper then Japan. I picked up a lovely loin of Scotch Fillet today for Y1000 kg where in Japan it would be Y1000 for 100gm. Where in Japan other daily item are cheaper. So it kind of work out thje same. I do the shopping for the hotel while in Hakuba and I do the shopping at home in Aussie. But I am a shopper and I do source the best prices every time I go shopping. So you can be lazy and top price or be studious Like you can buy 2 litres of milk for $2 shop brand or buy $4 for Top shelf. Most produce are price like that Shop or Genetic brands or Top selve price. But the price Spirits is dead cheap where bber is about the same $45 for a 24 can slab in Aussie, Y4800 for a slab in Japan.

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Compared to AU food and alcohol is dirt cheap in japan. Like half price or less.

 

I've heard that about food from several people. The cost of living in Australia sounds savage.

No it about the same over all. The Meat (Beef, Chook,Lamb), veg and fruit are way cheaper then Japan. I picked up a lovely loin of Scotch Fillet today for Y1000 kg were in Japan it would be Y1000 for 100gm. Where in Japan other daily item are cheaper. So it kind of work out thje same. I do the shopping for the hotel while in Hakuba and I do the shopping at home in Aussie. But I am a shopper and I do source the best prices every time I go shopping. So you can be lazy and top price or be studious Like you can buy 2 litres of milk for $2 shop brand or buy $4 for Top shelf. Most produce are price like that Shop or Genetic brands or Top selve price. But the price Spirits is dead cheap where bber is about the same $45 for a 24 can slab in Aussie, Y4800 for a slab in Japan.

 

I think you mean generic brands John-san.

Buying cheap is not always better though...

 

As with everywhere some things are expensive and some are cheap, beef is expensive - if you like a lot of beef, then it will hit your hip pocket. Personally I really enjoy eating local foods. No real objection to having a piece of vegemite toast in the morning, but when buying food and eating out I will embrace local foods, and it usually works out cheaper.

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Yes Mamabear, way cheaper to eat out. For me I usual go for yakasoba at Chicken on a Stick /Fukinotou at Hakuba Station up the stair above the barber. Very Cheap and they do the best yakasoba in town.

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O

This may be the reason but Norikura is Y35,000 and Cortina Y30,000
(Hakuba)
Otari

 

 

Yes. Otari no excuses I am sorry. I often visit the Bakery (the best in the Vally) there in Otari ( jdown from the station) in the morning before catching the train

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there's an ordinary daytime bus which is kinda expensive and not so frequent, and a night shuttle which is 1 buck a ride and 10 bucks the season pass. the pass not personal so you can share it if needed. better stick to some place reached by the free shuttle.

the only downside of using the free shuttle is you can reach hirafu gondola at 8:00, so you'll probably miss the first chair of early morning lift operations. i wouldn't choose my location just because of that, but still being the first to lap the supercourse after a good storm is definitely a must

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I think there are 3 different free shuttle buses and routes. maybe more..

 

One goes from Hirafu gondola, to Ace quad, to Niseko, then Annapuri.

Another goes from Hirafu to Hanazono.

and another one goes to East? Hirafu down the bottom of the hill the other side of the main road..

 

afaik

 

edit.. found maps/routes of hanazono and pension village buses..

 

www.grand-hirafu.jp/winter/en/mountain/shuttle.html

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  • 1 month later...

The Kutchan Tourism Association website now has the 2013-14 schedule for the night bus. Fewer runs and a fare increase from ¥100 to ¥500. No mention of the season ticket which was ¥1000 last season.

 

 

eek!!11!!! that is a huge price hike. simply not affordable.. The day bus is only about 320yen.

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What you gonna do?

Sheep tax. If I had mindless masses coming to my area I would do the same.

Niseko is over populated and needs a good cull. This will happen over the next 10 years as the prices skyrocket.

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You got that right Cal. Pretty sure there's a new supermarket opening in Hirafu for this season which is one of the main reasons people headed down to Kutchan on the night bus anyway.

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It's gonna get more expensive.

 

This piece from WSJ today gives a bit on the development side of things

 

 

Niseko, on Japan's northern island of Hokkaido, is Asia's top ski resort, the vacation retreat of the Japanese prime minister, among legions of serious skiers. Visitors are drawn by some of the world's best snow: 622 inches of fluffy deep powder last season, beating the 539 inches on Washington state's Mount Baker, generally thought to be the snowiest ski resort in the world.

 

Yet the resort doesn't look much like a millionaires' playground. Tangles of telephone wires, ugly concrete buildings and intrusive neon signs mar views of its neighbor, the breathtakingly perfect Mount Yotei.

 

 

That is likely to change now that hundreds of millions of dollars are being poured into Niseko, with the hopes of turning it into a world-class luxury destination.

 

More than 10 residential projects over the four ski areas are under way, all of which offer buyers of luxury property the option to rent it out through management. A key attraction is that Japan is the only country in the Asian-Pacific region with no restrictions on foreign ownership or on profiting from property investment. Also, the current weakness of the yen makes Japanese property a relative bargain, especially compared with the bubble markets of Hong Kong and Singapore.

 

For some time Niseko has been the No. 1 destination in Japan for international property investors. Part of its attraction is its proximity to the rapidly developing markets of Asia, which are acquiring a taste for status leisure pursuits such as skiing. Niseko had nearly 3 million foreign visitors in 2012. But the resorts have tended to be below the standards of luxury ski properties in Europe and North America. Some recent plans have been stymied by natural and economic crises.

 

The largest of the new wave of development is the 1,000-acre, 2,000-home Niseko Village site, bought by the Malaysian utilities conglomerate YTL 4677.KU +0.62% for $600 million in 2008. The first phase of the project consists of eight townhouses, scheduled to be completed by December 2014, according to Mark Yeoh, the director of YTL's hotel division. Mr. Yeoh described the development as apartments, villas and townhouses clustered around a central block of restaurants, bars and shops. He didn't give a completion date for the entire development. "We aim to keep up a steady flow of projects," he said. Mr. Yeoh also declined to specify pricing, saying only the apartments would be "competitive." He said his ideal buyers are "wealthy Asians from Singapore, Hong Kong, mainland China, Thailand and Indonesia," who can take advantage of several new direct air routes to the international airport at Sapporo, Hokkaido's capital.

 

In Hanazono, Richard Li, the Hong Kong telecom billionaire and son of Asia's richest man, Li Ka-shing, has commissioned the Tokyo-based Australian architect, Riccardo Tossani, to build 2,500 "very high end" apartments with shops, hotels and a golf course on his 613-acre site bought in 2007. The development will resemble a village with a car-free main square featuring cafes and restaurants, according to Mr. Tossani. The first building to be completed is a restaurant, Asperges, run by three-Michelin-star chef Hiroshi Nakamichi, due to open on Dec. 20.

 

Colin Hackworth, a spokesman for Nihon Harmony Resorts, Mr. Li's development company, declined to specify price levels for the apartments or the start date for construction, but he suggested the building start was imminent: "After a five year wait, we are now actively assessing options as to what will go first," he said. "The market is just starting to turn."

 

The latest game-changer came in the form of $100 million in Japanese government subsidies. Mr. Tossani has been commissioned by local government officials and business leaders to create a 10-year master plan for the beautification of Niseko, the neighboring town of Kutchan and the countryside in-between.

 

The first public works have started, with Mr. Tossani overseeing the redevelopment of one of the main streets. "Hong Kong visitors were complaining because they had to drag their luggage from the bus stop to their chalet along snowy streets with no sidewalks," he added. "We are putting in heated pavements, nice street furniture, burying the power lines and planting trees."

 

Instead, he offers a compelling vision of cafes spilling out onto sidewalks, parks, nature treks, ice-skating and a network of gondolas and ski trails that will make the entire resort car free and ski-in ski-out.

 

Shiki Niseko, another luxury so-called condotel—homes owned by private investors and rented out to guests—has just been completed by the Low Yat Group of Kuala Lumpur. The 68 apartments include two 1,008-square-foot penthouses for $2.2 million. Some 20% of the units have been sold, according to Low Yat's managing director, Low Su-Ming. The six-story building has a Michelin-starred restaurant, Kamimura; a concierge; a gourmet supermarket and an in-house car rental. "The opportunity to own a winter home in a world-class resort is increasingly becoming the lifestyle for wealthy Asians," said Ms. Low.

 

Just up the street, closer to the mountain, is Ki Niseko, where apartments include a 1,641-square-foot penthouse for $1.68 million. Buyers of two-bedroom apartments are guaranteed net rental returns of 4% for up to three years. One 776-square-foot, two-bedroom unit is being marketed at $663,000.

 

Construction is about to start on a development called Muse, the only project to woo non-Asian buyers. All but two of the 11 units have been presold to buyers from the U.S., Australia, Italy and Monaco. Atsuko Itoda, a spokeswoman for the development company, also called Muse, said the design was different from the "bling-bling" style preferred by many Asian buyers. Glass-walled apartments in this ultramodern, six-story building will look directly onto Mount Yotei. The two remaining units are priced at $689,000 for a 716-square-foot unit, and $498,000 for a 523-square-foot apartment.

 

Other residential projects are planned by Singaporean investors: the private-equity firm Symphony Asia, and the power couple Christina Ong and Ong Beng Seng, who own most of the Four Seasons resorts in Asia.

 

Niseko has been here before. Previous investment plans were thwarted by the 2008 global financial crisis and then by the 2011 Fukushima nuclear accident 500 miles to the south. Property values fell 30% each time, according to Jonathan Martin, chairman of Niseko Alpine Developments. At least one high-profile project, Capella, was scrapped amid the financial crisis, according to the development's former broker, Craig Meikle, of Nisade Real Estate. The developer, Capella Hotel Group, "still owns the land but they are not developing it now," he said, adding that property buyers had deposits returned.

 

House prices in Niseko are still down about 5% from 2011 rates, said Mr. Martin. However, the Vale, a development that launched in 2009, has recently "seen capital appreciation on resales of 15%," he added.

 

He said Niseko's previous setbacks will make the end results more sustainable. "Had it not been for the Lehman [brothers] shock and the earthquake, Niseko would already be a serious challenger to the big name resorts of North America and Europe," he said. "This sleepy backwater is now ready for its coming out party."

 

 

BN-AM305_1121ja_M_20131120144449.jpg

 

 

 

link to some pics:

 

http://online.wsj.co...0233237866924#1

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