Be like Beaver Creek
February 10, 2004
We just spent four glorious days in Vail/Beaver Creek. According to the Aspen Skiing Co., Beaver Creek is Snowmass’ primary competition. We read all the time how we don’t want Snowmass to look like Beaver Creek.
Why not? It’s a lovely modern ski village including many modern multi-story buildings with so much more to offer than Snowmass. Every aspect of our stay was a pleasure. We stayed at the new Ritz Carlton at Bachelor Gulch which is a wonderful luxury property.
Most of the accommodations in Beaver Creek are modern and nice. It’s a real ski town atmosphere where you can walk or shuttle via free dial a ride everywhere. There are numerous great restaurants from elegant to simple.
The entire skiing experience was spectacular: great lifts, excellent grooming, several well-run on-mountain restaurants with good food (someone even offers you a tissue as you walk in the door), electronic ski patrol emergency boards, lights telling you the status of the lift lines and more.
We live here and feel a certain amount of loyalty, but if we were recommending a place to take a family for a ski vacation ” hands down it would be Beaver Creek. Excepting Snowmass’ terrain and grooming, nothing here compares to Beaver Creek.
Skiing is expensive and guests demand value. We know there’s a segment of our residents who want everything to remain the same. However, if we aspire to be a successful ski resort with modern on-mountain amenities, we need a community-wide change in attitude, strategy and direction because we are not giving comparable value.
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It’s too late to go back to being a ranching community, so let’s be the best ski resort and get behind Base Village. Despite what some may think and espouse, Snowmass must have a highly successful ski resort to support a vibrant economy.
The Aspen Skiing Co. is proposing tremendous on-mountain improvements as a part of the Base Village development, all of which we receive regardless of the success of Base Village real estate sales. So let’s stop worrying about mass and scale. We need the mass and scale to compete and thrive. If you don’t believe it, spend a few days at Beaver Creek.
Yes, it has mass and height (done in excellent taste, we might add) and, indeed, has surpassed Snowmass in every respect, even though Snowmass had about a 20-year head start. Remember, change is inevitable. Things either improve or deteriorate. Snowmass has been experiencing the latter. We need to reverse that trend. We urge everyone to oppose the initiative and support Base Village.
Robyn and Dale Rands