While others see winter as a time to bundle up and stay inside, we suggest your clients bundle up and hit the slopes for a holiday in the snow. These mountainside resorts and lodges feature some of the longest ski runs, largest ski terrains and best resort amenities in Europe and North America.
Rocky Mountain Highs
Vail Mountain, located in the Rocky Mountains, is separated into three sections—The Front-Side, which boasts 1,500 acres for all ability levels; Blue Sky Basin, which features 645-acres of natural, gladed terrain; and the Back Bowls which offer more than 3,000 acres of expansive runs for strong intermediates and experts. Traveling across the mountain’s expanse terrain is simplified with the resort’s 31 lifts, which include two gondolas, sixteen high-speed chairlifts and six magic carpets (similar to a conveyor belt). At the base of the resort, guests will find a European-style pedestrian village in the town of Vail featuring bars, restaurants, shopping stores, and lodging options. Guests can choose to stroll along the town’s heated streets (thanks to ground source heat pumps) or hop on one of the town’s free buses to move around.
In honor of Vail’s early season, beginning Friday, Nov. 20, 2015, guests who book their stay before the resort’s opening day and who visit in early season before the holidays, can take advantage of benefits such as deals on lift tickets, easier reservations at onsite restaurants, access to live events including Vail Snow Daze’s music weekend (Dec. 11 to 13) and Vail Holidaze’s tree lighting ceremony (Dec. 19, Dec. 20 and Dec. 31), plus up to 40 percent off of lodging. For additional savings, guests can purchase the Epic Pass, which grants unlimited, unrestricted access to eleven U.S. ski resorts including Vail, Beaver Creek and Breckenridge in Colorado plus Park City Mountain Resort in Utah. For more information and rates, call (970) 754-8245 or visit vail.com.
First Class in Snowmass
The 152-unit ski-in/ski-out condo-hotel, The Residences Viceroy Snowmass in Snowmass, Colorado recently unveiled its plans for 49 additional units, an owner’s lounge, a fitness center and a teen rec room. Each of the three VIP perks will debut once the second phase of the resort’s development is complete.
The new 1,660-sq.-ft. owner’s lounge will serve the dual purpose of a relaxing retreat from the slopes and an after hours entertaining space. The lounge features a custom living room with leather furnishings, two outdoor balconies and an 80-inch television with surround sound, as well as a library wall and back bar, a butler’s bar and bronze detailing and seeded glass panels. A gas fireplace with book matched marble hearth and billiards table complete the modern lodge atmosphere. Health and wellness enthusiasts will enjoy the new 2,575-sq.-ft. fitness center with its expansive cardiovascular area, foam and stretching room, and top-of-the line equipment. Not to leave the kids out, the resort will also add on a teen rec room with vintage arcade games, a movie theater, reading nooks and a ping pong table. All residents have access to all of the Viceroy Snowmass Resort’s amenities, including a full service spa, pool and slope-side ski valet, plus the Treehouse Kids’ Adventure Center and restaurants Eight K, Nest, Ricard and Bia Hoi. Residences start at $279,000. Agents receive three percent commission. For more information, call (855) 923-4500 or visit viceroysnowmasssales.com.
Traversing in Lake Tahoe
At the base of the Northstar Mountain in Lake Tahoe, California sits the family- and couple-friendly Welk Resorts Northstar Lodge. A select number of 2- and 3-bedroom apartment-style villas with private decks, kitchens and outdoor fireplaces are available for nightly rental, starting at $340 per night. All villas include hickory floors, Viking ranges and refrigerators, plus ranch house design interiors. In the winter, the hotel offers amenities such as a private owner’s lounge, a media theater and a ski and boot valet. Out on the slopes, guests can experience 3,170-sq.-ft. of skiable acres, 97 trails, seven terrain parks, plus 20 lifts, 2,280-ft. of vertical drop and a newly constructed 22-inch half pipe designed by Winter Olympics gold medalist, Shaun White. The intermediate Home Run slope takes guests down to the ski valet and resort, or, to the cobblestone walkways in town where they can meander through an array of specialty boutiques, restaurants, cafes and craft shops. An open-air ice rink with cabanas, outdoor bars and fire pits sits in the middle of the shops. Outdoor resort activities include an ice-skating rink (a roller skating rink in the summer), live music, and a bungee trampoline. Rates start at $400 for a Two-Bedroom Lodge in 2015, and $600 for the same accommodations in 2016. For more information, call (760) 749-3000 or visit welkresorts.com/lake-tahoe.
Carving in Canada
In Canada, ski bunnies hit the trails of the Laurentian Mountains in Quebec. For accommodations, we recommend booking your clients at the Escale du Nord bed and breakfast. The 5-bedroom, wooden house is nestled in the middle of a forest in the ski town of Mont Tremblant, just two hours away from Montreal.
Amenities include a spa, a pool, and a sauna, plus a home cinema, a gym, and WiFi in the home office. After a day of skiing, guests are welcome to enjoy a cup of tea or play a card game in the house’s two lounges, which face the central fireplace, or read in the library. Daily breakfast is served in the dining room in front of a large window facing the forest. Inside the soundproof cinema, up to 10 guests can watch one of the many films in the homeowner’s library. Outdoor balconies furnished with plush chairs give guests a front row seat to the beautiful forest surrounding the property. Since the lodge is ideally situated near Mont Tremblant, guests are never more than a few minutes away from adventurous winter activities such as Alpine skiing, snowmobiling, snowshoeing, and iceskating. Room rates start at $97 dbl per night. For more information, visit escaledunord.com.
The Best of Both Worlds in Europe
In Europe, the Majestic Hotel & Spa in Barcelona is offering a new city and ski package in partnership with the Sport Hotel Hermitage & Spa in Andorra. The 6-night Full Speed Ahead package includes death-defying activities, including a Ferrari F430 F1 test drive on a Formula 1 course, and access to one of Europe’s longest ski runs.
At the Majestic Hotel & Spa, guests are treated to an hour of physical conditioning with Majestic’s personal trainer in preparation for skiing, a 3-course dinner for two with wine pairing at Petit Comite restaurant, and airport transfers in Barcelona, plus 23 laps in a Ferrari F430 F1 in the Circuit of Barcelona-Catalunya (Formula 1 Grand Prix). When guests stay at the Sport Hotel Hermitage & Spa, they’ll receive a daily ski pass to the Grandvalira ski resort for two full days, a 3-hour pass to the hydrotherapy zone in the Sport Wellness Mountain Spa, and a 3-course dinner for two with wine pairing at the Origen restaurant, plus airport transfers back to Barcelona. Travel dates are available from Dec. 1 to Mar. 31. Package rates start at $7,206 dbl, including three nights in a Junior Suite plus breakfast at the Majestic Hotel & Spa, plus three nights in a Junior Suite Premium at the Sport Hotel Hermitage & Spa. For more information, visit hotelmajestic.es/en.