Visitor reviews for Rusutsu Resort Ski Resort
February 08, 2015
Russ from Australia
Love this place.
If you want a party atmosphere go to Niseko. We just came from there...
If you want less lines, more piste and off-piste to yourself, no attitude when going under the orange rope from crew, check this place out.
Lift ticket works out to be $50 AUD a day. Once you get it head straight to Mt Isola and ride it until you get bored. Mt Isola is the signature on piste run, but to be honest it's all about the tree runs.
Reds are pretty tame for an intermediate boarders/skiers, blacks are very short.
If you have lots of money stay at the resort. If not, there are a few (but not ample) places to stay within a 10 minute walk.
Make sure you check out the row of little restaurants right next to the hotel, you'll save stacks of money and eat great food. Pirate man was our favourite.
If you wanted a holiday without Aussies, choose another location, Australians are everywhere!
Enjoy but don't tell your mates.
Rusutsu Resort Ratings
Overall: 3.6. Based on 11 votes and 12 reviews. Vote
(1) At least one overnight stop, (2) requires a whole day, (3) requires more than half a day – you may have time for a few turns (4) arrive by lunchtime and ski all afternoon, (5) there is a main airport within an hour of Rusutsu Resort.
Public Transport: 4.2
(1) There are no buses or taxis to Rusutsu Resort, (3) there are slow or infrequent buses / trains available, (5) getting to the resort is easy with frequent bus / train connections.
(1) An ugly resort in a bland setting, (3) average mountain views and resort, (5) a spectacular setting and a beautiful / historic resort town.
(1) No places to stay in/near Rusutsu Resort, (3) a few places to stay in the resort, (5) a wide variety of accommodation suitable to suit all budgets.
Cheap Rooms: 2.9
(1) No budget accommodation available, (3) just one or two hostels so book ahead, (5) several cheap hostels and pensions available.
Luxury Hotels: 3.8
(1) No luxury accommodation available, (3) just one or two luxury hotels so book ahead, (5) several up-market hotels in Rusutsu Resort.
Ski in/Ski out: 4.4
(1) The ski area is located far from any accommodation, (3) a free ski bus takes you to the ski area in a short trip, (5) Ski-in ski-out accommodation is available.
(1) There are no child care facilities at Rusutsu Resort, (5) the resort has excellent child-care facilities including at least one reasonably priced creche.
(1) Occasionally gets enough snow for skiing, (2) is often closed due to a lack of snow, (3) occasionally suffers from a lack of snow, (4) rarely suffers from a lack of snow, (5) Rusutsu Resort is snowsure even in the poorest seasons.
(1) Rusutsu Resort relies entirely on natural snow, (3) there are just a few snow cannons, (5) there are snowmaking facilities on all pistes.
Snow Grooming: 4.5
(1) There are no snow groomers at Rusutsu Resort, (3) occasionally some pistes are left ungroomed and in a poor state, (5) all the runs at Rusutsu Resort are groomed daily.
(1) there is nowhere to ski when it is windy or visibility is bad and lifts often shut, (3) there are some trees for poor visibility but main lifts sometimes close, (5) Rusutsu Resort is mostly in forest where you can ski in flat-light and windy days, lifts rarely close.
Nearby options: 3.6
(1) If snow conditions are poor at Rusutsu Resort, it will be poor everywhere nearby, (3) there are good alternatives within an hours drive, (5) other locations on the same lift pass provide a rich variety of snowsure ski conditions.
Regional rating: 4.5
(1) Rusutsu Resort usually has poor snow conditions compared to other resorts in region, (3) has average conditions for the region, (5) usually has the best snow conditions in the region.
Lift Staff: 4.5
(1) The staff at Rusutsu Resort are rude or unhelpful, (5) lift staff at Rusutsu Resort are pleasant, cheerful and eager to help.
(1) the resort is always busy and there are usually long lift queues, (3) it is quiet apart from occasional weekends and school holidays, (5) it is uncrowded and lift queues are very rare.
Ski Schools: 3.8
(1) No ski schools available, (2) one or two ski schools but local language only, (3) a few ski schools but book early for multi-lingual instructors, (4) plenty of ski schools and multi-lingual instructors available, (5) excellent ski schools with friendly multi-lingual ski instructors.
Hire and Repairs: 3.6
(1) Nothing can be sourced, not even ski-wax or ptex. (3) there are some ski shops but rentals need to be booked in advance, (5) good quality ski equipment can be purchased or hired and overnight repairs are possible.
Variety of pistes: 3.7
(1) The ski runs are featureless and unvaried, (3) the ski runs are varied but not extensive enough for a week, (5) Rusutsu Resort has diverse and interesting pistes including forests and high alpine terrain.
(1) Beginners can only watch others ski and snowboard, (3) a few gentle slopes but beginners will get bored in less than a week, (3) Vast areas of gentle terrain.
(1) No intermediate terrain at Rusutsu Resort, (3) intermediate skiers will get bored after a few days, (5) vast areas of cruising runs.
(1) Nothing for advanced skiers and snowboarders, (3) enough steep terrain for a few days with some good offpiste, (5) Enough steep terrain and offpiste areas to entertain advanced skiers for at least a week.
Snow Park: 2.7
(1) Not even a kicker at Rusutsu Resort, (3) average sized park quite well looked after, (5) huge park area and expertly crafted pipes, jumps and boardercross trails.
(1) No off-piste worth mentioning, (2) off piste is out-of-bounds, (3) some varied offpiste that stays fresh for one or two days, (5) a vast array of off-piste routes that can stay untracked for several days.
(1) There is nowhere to go for cross-country skiing around Rusutsu Resort, (3) there are some cross country trails available, (5) the area features many spectacular and well maintained cross-country trails.
(1) No designated luge or toboggan runs, (3) there are toboggan runs that open quite often, (5) Rusutsu Resort has long and well maintained luge / toboggan facilities suitable for all ages.
Mountain Dining: 3.4
(1) Nowhere to buy food by the pistes, (3) some places to eat up on the mountain but they are often busy and expensive, (5) there is a variety of excellent mountain eateries right next to the slopes to suit all budgets.
(1) Bring your own food, there isn't even a shop. (5) A wide variety of places to eat and drink in the resort, from fast food to fancy restaurants.
(1) Nothing to do, not even a bar, (3) there are a few bars in the resort but nothing special, (5) clubs and bars stay open until very late and have a friendly atmosphere.
Other Sports: 3.4
(1) No sports facilities at all apart from ski lifts, (3) resort has just a small public swimming pool, (5) resort has all kinds of sports facilities, including a full-size swimming pool.
(1) Besides the snow and walking there is nothing to do here, (3) the non-skier will find things to do for few days but may become bored after a week, (5) the resort area is a fascinating place to visit, regardless of winter sports.
Winter Walks: 2.0
(1) Very limited walking and no snowshoe trails, (3) a couple of designated scenic walking/snowshoe trails, (5) extensive and diverse winter walking trails for all abilities.
Ski Pass Value: 4.1
(1) A 1 week ski pass is overpriced compared to the number of lifts available, (3) the ski pass is averagely priced and covers a reasonable number of lifts, (5) ski passes are excellent value for money and cover a lot of lifts spanning a big area.
Value (National): 3.7
(1) Overall, Rusutsu Resort is one of the most expensive ski resorts in the country and not worth the money, (3) overall represents average value for money, (5) overall offers the best value resort in the country.
Value (Global): 4.0
(1) Overall, Rusutsu Resort is one of the most expensive ski resorts in the world, (3) overall it offers pretty average value for money compared to resorts from other countries, (5) internationally the resort offers excellent value for money.
April 04, 2014
Rueben from Australia
Rusutsu used to offer a great family ski environment with no apres. Over the years it has increasingly gotten busier with bus loads of rude Europeans and ugly Australians doing day trips from Niseko which was really noticeable in 2014. Where once you could get fresh tracks lasting days it is now tracked within 1/2 day.
For those chasing a quieter resort their are better options.
In comparison to other international resorts it still can offer an excellent trip. Everyone just needs to relax a little and take a leaf from the locals and have some respect for others.
February 21, 2014
Sean from Australia
This place doesn't compare to Niseko. Less snow, still the same crowds; why bother.
November 12, 2011
Joe from Australia
Rusutsu is amazing. For whatever reason, the locals don't seem to enjoy riding off-piste - so it's fresh tracks all day for those that do!
No lift lines, very cruisy atmosphere and amazing tree runs. Probably steeper than Niseko but less vertical overall, and fresh tracks for most of the day - it is often tracked in Niseko early in the day in peak season.
Stay in Niseko and hit up Rusutsu (and Moiwa!) for regular day trips and you will not be disappointed!
November 08, 2011
jon from Australia
Great for a bit of off-piste exploring and you avoid the crowds of Niseko after a dump. Certainly not the "Bali" like scene of Niseko. I tended to find more runs that were steep and powder filled here than in Niseko and they didn't get skied out for days. Once we moved onto Niseko and experienced the crowds (not crowded by Aussie or European standards) we ended up hiring a van very cheaply (by Japanese standards) and driving back to Rusutsu each day to avoid the crowds and skied out terrain (two days after a dump). Worth the 30-40 minute drive there and back.
October 11, 2011
John-Paul from Australia
I've been to Rusutsu twice now (Jan 07 and 09) and love the place. The off-piste skiing is steep enough for me and very, very deep. Most off-piste runs end up at the bottom of a chair, so you can explore with the confidence that you won't get lost. Most of the runs off Mt Isola are carved through the trees. You have the choice of skiing on the piste, or ducking into the trees. When the legs get tired you can get shoot back onto the piste for a rest!
The chairs are well connected with no flat spots - great for boarders! The longest lift queue I have experienced in two trips is five minutes and that was bad for Rusutsu standards! Virtually all the lifts are covered chairs or gondolas, so we never got very cold.
The Rusutsu Resort Hotel is great novelty for kids - wave pool, water slides, amusement park rides, ice carvings, souvenir shopping, etc. Adults, however, may find it tacky and the restaurant food uninteresting. The ski in/ski out location is awesome.
A point to note, when we visited Rusutsu, it did not have English speaking ski school for children, so we had to ski with our seven year old or pay for private English speaking ski lessons. This was an expensive activity. It may have changed now, but ensure you check beforehand.
All in all, it is a magical place and I would recommend it to anyone.
February 03, 2011
Lurv2board from Australia
Have been travelling to Hokkaido for years now and have never understood the luke warm reviews for Rusutsu. It is not a party town, but that is part of its appeal to the serious freeriding skier or snowboarder. Great little restaurants and pensions and tree runs as good as the best in Europe. It lacks a bit in 'vert', but the people, the powder and the tree runs more than make up for it. Great for families where one or more want access to challenging terrain and the rest want easy groomers.
January 28, 2010
ross hetherington from Australia
Just had 6 excellent days at Rusutsu Resort. Snowed every day - nice cruisy runs. Pirateman was great but the 'all you can eat /all you can drink' offer at the resorts barbeque restaurant was probably the highlight - not 'cheap' but the food was excellent and the beer - never ending.
January 07, 2010
Chris from Japan
I love Rusutsu (Rusutsu Resort), but while the skiing is great the town itself isn't anything like what there is on offer in Niseko. Even if you're not a party animal - I'm not - the range and quality of restaurants and cafes more than make up for the over abundance of foreigners.
My advice: base yourself in Niseko and hit places like Rusutsu Resort as day trips out from there.
December 31, 2008
Sven-Erik Carlsson from Sweden
I have spent so far 7 days here at Rusutsu Resort and I must say it is great. Not that high altitude, not so vertical but the snow is absolutely fantastic and the forest runs are perfect. I stayed at Romolus Hotel which is a small family owned hotel 500 meters from the resort. Great people and a superb breakfast. It has been snowing every day so most of the tracks are filled with snow the next day. Very few western people here. Don´t eat at the resort. Try the small local restaurants, even if they are hard to see that they actually are restaurants. Try out the new "PirateMan" - great food. I promise you are going to enjoy Rustsu but do not expect any wild nightlife.