Letter: Aspen Skiing Co. should renew lease for Gywn’s | AspenTimes.com

Letter: Aspen Skiing Co. should renew lease for Gywn’s

Aspen Skiing Co. has been an exceptional company, achieving consistent growth and financial performance while building excellent relationships with Roaring Fork Valley communities, businesses and employees, as well as guests from all over the world.

The purpose of this letter is to suggest executive leadership re-evaluate a recent decision that is incongruous with stated values, at odds with the expectations and attitudes of Roaring Fork communities, disappointing to Skico employees, and upsetting to our guests. It's also bad for the quality and continuing competitiveness of Skico business. Please re-evaluate the decision to terminate the lease for Gwyn's High Alpine Restaurant. Find common ground and extend the lease. It will be the best, most enthusiastically supported decision you make this year.

Let me share a few supporting thoughts.

Gywn and her family consistently provide the best dining experience, the best food, the most gracious hospitality, the best value of any restaurant/bar on any of the four mountains. I'm sure you can verify this yourself, but conducting a survey of your guests will make the point more dramatically.

Gwyn's is a cherished part of the community, arguably as important as Bonnie's, the Aspen Historical Society, ACES and the Red Onion. It's part of what makes Aspen Aspen, as opposed to Vail. All of us need to celebrate and support the independent local businesses that make this place so special. The ski company needs and certainly should want the enthusiastic endorsement and support of the surrounding communities.

Finally, Gwyn's sets the standard and provides the independent competition necessary to raise the game of all ski company-owned and -operated restaurants. When companies vertically integrate to reduce cost or increase profit, inevitably they lose competitiveness, customer focus, and the ability to innovate.

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Look at General Motors as an example of a company that completely lost the plot. Don't lose the plot. Don't punish years of accomplishment and performance. Do the right thing and make the right decision. Renew Gwyn's lease.

Steven Wilhite

Snowmass Village

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