Tennis pro Connor Brosnahan’s winter job has him coaching at a luxury resort in Greece in 30-plus degree temperatures.
It’s just one of the pitfalls of working in southern Europe while on the trip of a lifetime.
The 20-year-old Ashburtonian defied Covid-19 and boarded a plane to Greece in late June for a coaching job at the Costa Navarino Greece.
Connor, an Ashburton College alumni, has been coaching tennis since he was 14.
Since arriving in Greece he has been at the resort’s racket academy coaching tennis, padel (think doubles squash on an enclosed tennis court) and squash between six to eight hours a day, in high summer temperatures.
“It is really fun, but very tiring work,” he said.
“We coach from 8am to noon and then again from 5pm to 9pm, in between this time I either nap or go and swim at the amazing beaches here.”
He said there were strict covid-prevention measures in place for staff and guests with masks and/or sanitiser used around the resort and between lessons. There are also regular temperature checks for people entering the resort, extended distancing limits and additional staff to allow for a staff to guest ratio of 1:1.
Connor is tested for covid every 10 days and has “luckily” returned negative tests.
“We don’t have to wear masks on court but we do in the office when clients are present, also whenever we are in the buildings within the resort we wear masks. Between each lesson we sanitise equipment before our next client.”
Initially, and just after Greece reopened to tourism, most of the resort clients were Greek or from nearby, but last month there was an influx of British guests.
“Once we hit August I believe 80 per cent of the guests were British, mostly London, because regulations mean (people from the) United Kingdom can holiday in Greece and return home without having to quarantine,” he said.
Aside from relaxing on the beach working at the resort also has its perks. Connor lives in staff accommodation about a five-minute walk from the resort but bikes to work each day on an off-road track.
There is also a staff restaurant. “I have been eating a lot of healthy Greek food. And I order souvlaki to my room at least once a week.”
The resort has two five-star deluxe hotels, two signature golf courses as well as a spa and seaweed therapy centre, more than 20 dining venues and offers a range of sports outdoor, including the racket academy where tennis is played on clay court surfaces.