There-and-back, single-day trips to the mountains are a luxury of the past (thank you, all the people moving here and I-70 traffic). Luckily, high-elevation hotels are responding to the changing needs of mountain visitors with awesome packages, fun amenities, and new locations. Here are five venues calling our names this winter.
The Lionshead Marriott is unveiling a $25 million renovation (aka, updated guest rooms and meeting spaces), but what we’re really digging is the new offerings. There’s now a gear garage stocked with snowshoes, snow gear, and even a snowman-making kit for the little ones. And the hotel added a curling sheet (yep, like the Olympic sport), which is open to the public and free to use from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. (reservations are required from 4 to 8 p.m., when fees also apply). Marriott also partnered with local gear maker Icelantic Skis for a special winter package: Guests sleep in an Icelantic-themed junior suite and can demo the brand’s all-mountain or backcountry touring skis; the special starts at $549 and can be booked here or by calling 970-476-4444.
Opening this month, Ouray’s Red Mountain Alpine Lodge is a backcountry A-frame built from Douglas fir. Sitting at 11,018 feet near the top of Red Mountain Pass in the San Juan Mountains, RMAL will be open year-round. It sleeps 18 to 20 people, has hot water, flushing toilets, in-floor heat, Wi-Fi, solar power, and a two-keg cooler. As if that wasn’t enough, stays also include breakfast, après belly warmers, and gourmet dinners. Private rooms start at $379.
Avoid driving to the mountains altogether courtesy of downtown Denver’s Curtis Hotel. Its new “Dumb & Dumber: Lloyd & Harry Meet the Curtis Package” may start in the Mile High City (two nights at the Curtis are included), but guests will travel to Aspen via a luxury jet and receive two single-day lift tickets for Aspen Mountain. To replenish skied-off calories, you’ll also nab a 12-pack from Aspen Brewing Company and a $100 credit to the Corner Office, as well as $200 toward spa treatments at the Oxford Club, Spa & Salon to soothe sore muscles. And, yes, the package does come with two ruffled tuxedos with matching top hats—in orange and powder blue, naturally. Living out your “little place called Aspen” dreams isn’t cheap, though: The package is $10,000 for two people. It’s available until April 21, 2019; call 303-571-0300 to reserve.
For those looking for a less extravagant lodging option, Breckenridge delivers: The Sisters Cabin, part of the Summit Huts Association, is the first new hut to be approved on public land in Summit County in more than two decades. Located on the north side of Bald Mountain, it’s a 3.5-mile ski or snowshoe to the front door (elevation gain: approximately 1,800 feet). It can sleep 14 people inside its 2,090 square feet and features two indoor bathrooms and a wood-fired sauna. The new lodge will begin taking guests on Saturday, January 12.
You can bring your pup with you to the pet-friendly Ritz-Carlton Bachelor Gulch, but you’ll have to leave him in the room if you sign up for the First Prints program. You’ll still be giving out belly rubs, though: This early morning snowshoe trek is led by Bachelor, a Saint Bernard who doubles as the hotel’s canine ambassador (and a professional guide, too). We promise not to tell your pooch.
Snowmass Village is in the midst of a massive reimagining that will bring at least two new overnight spots to the quiet area. The first, Limelight Hotel Snowmass, welcomes its first guests this month. Sure, there are 99 guest rooms, spa pools, and ski-in, ski-out access to the ski hill, but there’s also a 54-foot-tall, rock-realistic indoor climbing wall (free for hotel guests) that looks out toward the updated plaza, ice skating rink included. The Lumin is also adding three luxury penthouses (pictured, above), available for rent in mid-January starting at $2,000 per night.