Pull on your winter hats, break out the hand warmers and prep your ski gear for the slopes, the 2017-2018 ski season is almost upon us. Breckenridge Ski Resort in Colorado and Park City Mountain Resort in Utah, both conveniently located near Hilton Grand Vacations Club resorts, open for the season November 10 and 17, respectively.
Club Traveler interviewed Rafe S., Hilton Grand Vacations’ managing senior director for the Rocky Mountain region, who is excited about the upcoming season. “We’ll be celebrating and welcoming the start of ski season,” he says. “Hopefully with some new snow!”
Before diving into what he expects for the coming months, Rafe shared his highlights from the 2016-2017 season. “We had some of the biggest snow storms I’ve ever seen,” he says, adding that Park City got 50 inches of snow in less than a week during one January storm. “It was a lot of fun!”
Photo courtesy of Breckenridge Ski Resort.
What are you most looking forward to this season at Breckenridge and Park City?
“For Breckenridge, Peak 10, one of the best-kept secrets on the mountain, gets a new six-person chair this year, which will really be great for Members staying at Valdoro Mountain Lodge,” Rafe says.
“For Park City, I think another year into the expansion and collaboration with Vail Resorts means that all the kinks [will be] worked out, and being able to explore the mountain will be fantastic,” he says.
In 2014, Vail Resorts bought Park City Mountain Resort and combined it with Canyons Resort to create the largest ski resort in the United States, which opened in 2015.
The Breckenridge area boasts 300 days of sunshine each year and an average annual snowfall of 360 inches, making it an excellent destination for ski and board fans alike.
Where’s your favorite spot to warm up with food or drink during ski season?
“In Park City, it’s pretty fun to ski from the lodge over to Main Street for lunch. You can also ski right up to High West Distillery [parallel to Main on Park Avenue] for some great food and victuals, or just across the street is one of my favorite pizza places, Davanza’s,” Rafe says. “In Breckenridge, I always start my day with coffee and a bagel from Clint’s.”
Other News: Accessibility Programs
The National Ability Center recently announced a 50-year lease with Park City Mountain Resort with plans to expand its program and double its classes there. The NAC has provided adaptive ski lessons for more than 30 years at Park City, and today the center offers programs year-round to anyone with a barrier to recreation and works to provide options for individuals of all abilities. “The NAC does an incredible job and is a great local organization that gets folks of all abilities out on the mountain,” Rafe says. In Breckenridge, he says, “The Breck Outdoor Education Center (BOEC) is awesome helping assist those with special needs on the mountain.”
Where to Stay and When to Book
Where to Stay in Park City: The rustic yet modern Sunrise Lodge, a Hilton Grand Vacations Club is surrounded by mountains and conveniently located at the bottom of the Sunrise Lift in a base area called Canyons Village.
Where to Stay in Breckenridge: Valdoro Mountain Lodge is a mountain retreat next to the base of Peak 9 and just two blocks from Main Street.
Booking Tip: Ski season is a popular time at both Sunrise Lodge and Valdoro Mountain Lodge. Planning ahead for the 2018-2019 ski season? Be sure to book as far out as your reservation window allows.
*The photo featured at the top of this article is courtesy of Park City Mountain Resort.