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Silver Queen Gondola cabin for sale on eBay

A Silver Queen Gondola cabin appeared for sale Wednesday on eBay for $900. (Mark Fox/The Aspen Times)
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A little piece of the Silver Queen is for sale again, this time to the highest bidder. A cabin from the Silver Queen Gondola on Aspen Mountain went up for auction Wednesday on eBay. An opening bid of $900 is required.Michigan businessman Don White is testing the waters for interest in the Aspen icon. He bought 80 of the 162 gondola cabins when the Aspen Skiing Co. announced in December it would sell them. White tried to buy them all, but the Skico settled on selling him about half.

The gondola cars proved more popular than expected. All sold within 36 hours, and some locals were ticked that so many went to one buyer.White got a “small discount” from the $550 price the Skico charged per cabin, according to Skico spokesman Jeff Hanle. If he is successful with the eBay experiment, he could come close to doubling his investment – and school the Skico on the finer points of the memorabilia market.Hanle said the Skico didn’t anticipate White or anyone else flipping the gondola cabins through an auction on eBay.”No, certainly it’s not what we expected or what we were told,” Hanle said. “There is nothing we can do about it.”

The Skico has already made sales arrangements for the cabins. Nothing in sales terms prohibited buyers from flipping them.Skico officials were under the impression that White would sell the cabins to sporting goods stores and other retailers. The exact plan is somewhat of a mystery. It was not clear if White will sell only one cabin on eBay or others if this auction is successful.Hanle said there are no sour grapes on the part of the Skico, especially since it is unknown if the cabin will sell. As of mid-afternoon Wednesday, there was no bid. Bidding is open until 8:45 a.m. April 19.The biggest appeal might be for someone in Aspen. Shipping costs for the 550-pound cabin will likely be between $700 and $1,000, according to the auction information. Roaring Fork Valley buyers could avoid shipping by picking the cabins up.

Hanle said the old cabins will come down as soon as possible after ski season concludes Sunday. Bigger, more modern models are replacing the cabins after 19 years. Hanle said he was unsure when the cabins will be available to buyers at the Buttermilk parking lot.The eBay auction site for the gondola cabin said it would be available May 1. The item can be found by searching for “Silver Queen Gondola” at the eBay website.Scott Condon’s e-mail address is scondon@aspentimes.com


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