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And there was snow.
Lots of snow…

Three Vancouver restaurant workers developed a friendship while working together. On a whim, they decided to trek up to Whistler in the winter of 1984 to check out the skiing that they were hearing so much about. Once they ventured up the mountain, they were hooked!

The friends essentially never left Whistler after that first trip. One year later, in December of 1985, Sushi Village opened and the dream that these three friends had – to open a world-class sushi restaurant in what would become one of the most popular ski resorts in the world – came to fruition. But the dream behind the dream was to ski every day!

Most of their friends, family and colleagues in Vancouver thought they were crazy. Regardless, they went ahead with their restaurant plans. They expected that the restaurant (number 6 in Whistler) would be busy enough to stay afloat and make just enough money to allow the three of them to ski and live in Whistler.

The three partners were doing something right. The first winter was REALLY good and exceeded all expectations. Once that ski season ended though, the summer was quiet. REALLY quiet. The restaurant almost closed down that autumn, but the snow began to fall and so returned the crowds of hungry skiers. They never looked back.


Michael “Chili” Thom (1976 – 2016) was a man of the mountains. A wilderness guide turned artist, he was always happiest and most comfortable when he was out exploring in nature. Teaching himself to paint at age 20, Chili found a way to take the emotion and majesty of the landscapes he loved, mostly from his home in British Columbia, and translate it onto the canvas.

Completing over 400 original pieces over his 20-year career, Chili loved to play with colour, motion and the passage of time in his work.

When Chili Thom passed over to the other side in November of 2016, he left a legacy. His creative spirit and enthusiasm for life inspired us to get outside, to make things happen, and to enjoy each moment spent with friends, especially out amid the power and beauty of the forests, coastlines and mountains that he loved.


The term ‘Legendary’ gets overused these days, especially in Whistler, but Mikito ‘Miki’ Homma fills the criteria in every sense of the word.

It was not always easy to run a business, but the snow was deep, the fish was fresh, and Miki found summer fun windsurfing the summer on-shore breeze in Howe Sound. Over the next few years Miki became an icon as the Whistler popularity exploded and Sushi Village became a must-visit spot for the ski, snowboard, and bike enthusiasts.

Miki’s legacy and influence extended far beyond his restaurant, Sushi Village never changed because it didn’t have to. Over the years, Miki and his partners hire and supported professional athletes like free skiing Mike Douglas, gold medal snowboarder Ross Rebaliati, renowned artist Chilli Thom, and a host of other shredders, photographers, filmmakers, artists, business owners, lawyers, writers and even an adult film star! Miki made sure his permanent staff always had a place to come home to as they pursued their dreams, and he helped introduce a generation of young Japanese workers to the big-mountain Canadian dream.

Friend to all and foe to none, Miki will be remembered for his wild laugh, his convoluted sense of humor, his generosity to his staff, and as the only Whistler restaurateur who saw no problem in playing classic 70s Punk Rock during dinner on both Sunday and Monday nights.

Miki is survived by his loving wife Naoko, his grateful staff, his hundreds of friends and the tens of thousands of sushi lovers who have flocked to his restaurant over the past three decades to experience the flavour’s, fun, and friendship of a true legend.