Café opens at summit of Sapporo Kokusai Ski Resort

Neil Hartmann, who has opened a café at the summit of the Sapporo Kokusai Ski Resort

Neil Hartmann, an American filmmaker who lives in Sapporo’s Minami Ward, has opened a café named ‘SKS INTERNATIONAL’ at the summit of the Sapporo Kokusai Ski Resort (1,100 m). His aim is to “convey the superb views via a members-only networking site and help invigorate the resort.”
 Born and raised in California, Hartmann experienced skiing in Sapporo when he stayed there for a year with his family at the age of 12, and loves Sapporo’s mountains. In 1991, at the age of 19, Hartmann moved to Sapporo with the aim of becoming a pro snowboarder. He subsequently became interested in filmmaking and began filming on snowy peaks in Japan and overseas. He married a Japanese woman and, in 2005, moved to Sapporo’s hot-spring area of Jozankei and opened a soft-serve ice-cream shop three years ago.

 The café sells soft-serve ice-cream (¥480) made with milk from a farm in Asahikawa, peanut butter toast sandwiches (¥550) and the like, and affords views of Otaru, Ishikari Bay and, on fine days, the Rumoi region of Northern Hokkaido. Hartmann hopes to “widely convey the magnificence of the snowy mountain” as even those who do not ski or snowboard can take the gondola to the summit. The café is open every day from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. until May 9 next year, and seats 21.


Sapporo Kokusai Ski Resort