Are your clients looking for some fresh mountain air and the perfect place to work or play while social distancing this fall? Look no further than Telluride, Colorado and the surrounding San Juan Mountains.
Spanning the southwest corner of Colorado, the San Juan Mountain range is home to some of the most awe-inspiring natural beauty in the United States. This high and rugged mountain range boasts 14 of Colorado’s 58 “14ers,” mountain peaks exceeding 14,000 ft. And Telluride is the perfect home base from which to explore the natural splendor of the area. From international film and music festivals, sublime hikes, and water adventures, this charming mountain town is huge on character, culture and history alike.
Telluride’s modest origins date back to the mining boom of the late 1800’s. Originally a silver mining camp, Telluride is now home to Colorado’s only helicopter ski operation, Telluride Helitrax, and Colorado’s tallest freestanding waterfall, Bridal Veil Falls. It’s also where the infamous Butch Cassidy robbed his first bank!
Stay & Play
Whatever adventures your clients choose to take on while visiting Telluride, at the end of each day they can rest easy at the Madeline Hotel & Residences. Centrally located in Mountain Village, this beautiful Auberge Resort property is the perfect sanctuary from which to explore the San Juan Mountains. The Madeline offers a fabulous ski-in ski-out location, just a short walk from Telluride’s complimentary gondola, and easy access to hiking and mountain biking trails. It’s an easy 15 minutes from Telluride Airport and just over an hour from Montrose Airport. The resort has a quaint, yet luxurious European feel and amenities that make for a world-class vacation.
A Pampered Stay
At the Madeline Hotel & Residences, your clients can expect to be pampered from the moment they arrive. They can choose from one of the hotel’s elegant guestrooms, sumptuous suites, or fully indulge in one of their residences. The accommodations are all outfitted with mountain chic decor and furnishings, fine linens and toiletries, and the most comfortable beds.
My family and I were fortunate enough to stay in a 3-bedroom residence for our time in Telluride. “They really spoiled us!” my 7-year-old daughter squealed as we walked in the door, and I could not have expressed it better myself.
Our residence offered all of the comforts of a private mountain home with the luxury amenities of the resort. We enjoyed a fully stocked gourmet kitchen and dining area, a spacious living room with gas fireplace, and multiple balconies and terraces with panoramic mountain views. In the master bedroom, we enjoyed a steam shower, and the children were spoiled with luxe bunk beds and a Wii console.
Beyond Your Pillow
In true Auberge style, the amenities at The Madeline are as indulgent as the accommodations themselves. Once guests return from a day of outdoor adventures, they can take a plunge in the heated pool or relax and soothe aching muscles in one of the spacious hot tubs, where they can take in the splendor of the surrounding mountains. Recommend they visit their state-of-the-art fitness center or try a Pilates or yoga class, which take place outside on the game lawn in perfectly spaced circles that account for social distancing. If they have some extra time, they should treat themselves to a massage or body treatment at the award-winning spa.
The Madeline Hotel has something on offer for guests of all ages. The 20 Below Kids Club is sure to be a hit with the little ones. Although it was closed during our stay due to COVID, the staff was happy to provide books and painting supplies that made for a fun afternoon activity with our kids. They also provide you with s’more kits for some evening family time by the firepits. Missing your four-legged family member while on holiday? Ajax, the hotel’s very own resident golden retriever would be happy to show guests around. He’s a gentle guy, and our kids loved spending time with him. And if your clients visit Telluride in the winter, the onsite ski boutique will happily outfit them in all of the gear they’ll need to hit the slopes.
Dining at The Madeline Hotel is relaxed and family-friendly. Telluride is known for its celebrated restaurants and chefs, and the Black Iron Kitchen+Bar certainly ranks high on the list of must-try restaurants in town. It serves hearty mountain cuisine with a view of the ice rink in the winter that becomes a game lawn in the summer. Some tables even have built-in firepits, which make for a cozy dining experience. The Madeline also has a Starbucks Coffee on site, which is perfect for those on-the-go java cravings!
In Telluride and the San Juan Mountains activities abound, to the point that you can easily run out of time to do all that you may want to try. The concierge at the Madeline can facilitate bookings, and one can easily fill their days with horseback riding, dog sledding, snowmobiling, golf, 4×4 experiences and so much more. I highly recommend stand-up paddleboarding at Trout Lake. During our stay, Mountain Adventure Equipment provided a seamless stand-up paddleboarding experience. They loaded the paddleboards, oars, and life jackets in our car, but they also deliver the equipment to the lake for those who prefer. Want to try your hand at fly fishing? Either as a novice or an experienced fisherman, Telluride Outside will provide the equipment and techniques for a fun-filled day on the river.
If your clients consider themselves something of a thrill-seeker, Telluride’s Via Ferrata is the ultimate mountain climbing challenge. Located in the box canyon surrounding Telluride, this climbing route demands a great deal of technical climbing and delivers some of the most breathtaking views in the area. One of our absolute favorite day trips from Telluride, which can be done by car or by snowmobile in the winter, is a visit to Dunton Hot Springs. Originally a mining camp, this stunning alpine town is about an hour’s drive from Telluride. Make a day of it and plan to enjoy a delicious lunch at their authentic saloon and take a dip in their hot springs.
COVID and Telluride
I am happy to report that Telluride and the Madeline hotel are rightfully taking COVID very seriously. The hotel staff, locals, and visitors alike appeared to be respectful of the mask mandate. Proper signage and hand sanitizer are readily available throughout the hotel, Mountain Village, and the town of Telluride. The Madeline’s housekeeping staff will not coincide with you in your room. They offer touchless in-room dining service and scan menus. When you visit Telluride and the San Juan Mountains, you tend to spend very little time inside. Yet it is extremely comforting during times like this to know that all precautions are being taken to ensure that the vacation will be safe and enjoyable
This story originally appeared in worldstompers.com, a family travel website created to inspire families with kids to expand their idea of adventures. You can follow the adventures of the Bazavilvazo family @worldstompers on Instagram and The Worldstompers on Facebook.