About a year ago, The Collective building in Snowmass Base Village opened its doors to the public as a shell of community space with affordable programming and activities.
About a year later on Saturday, that shell’s completed build-out was presented to hundreds of locals and visitors who poured in to fully experience The Collective for the first time.
“I’m really excited to get this open, a lot of work by a lot of people was put in to get it here,” said Charlie Singer, East West Partners project manager of The Collective opening on Saturday. “This building is for the community and was designed for everyone … Our hope is that anyone in the Roaring Fork Valley will have a reason to want to come here.”
After a few short speeches and a snip of a large, red ribbon stretched across the finished Base Village building, the public was invited in for a free dinner at mix6 — a fast-casual nutritarian eatery by longtime local chef Martin Oswald — drinks at the moxiBar, and the immersive art and gaming experience of the downstairs game lounge.
A long, seemingly never-ending line for the mix6 dinner wound around the top floor for several hours as people waited to pick four or six foods from 12 options, including broccoli, mac and cheese, sautéed greens, tofu, chicken, steak and squash.
According to Martin Oswald, his staff served over 1,000 people Saturday and he felt it was the most successful restaurant opening he’s ever had.
“There was so much collective effort that went into this unlike other towns I’ve been in,” Oswald said of The Collective and all its offerings Saturday, highlighting the efforts of town government, tourism, Snowmass Base Village developers and the building’s contractors.
“A lot of people have grand visions and great ideas but very few people manage to follow through. Here, the community really came together and persistence paid off.”
Outside of eating self-mixed meals and drinking things like gluhwein and hot chocolate, people also tested out the various games and interactive art pieces of The Collective’s lower level game lounge.
Families faced off at the eight-person fusbol table, kids and adults swam through the Ziegler Reservoir-inspired ball pool, and many tried to imprint their bodies onto a life-sized, 3D pin art frame.
“I think this place is sick, it’s so cool,” said Michael Quintanilla, 14, as he set up the lounge’s pool table for a game with his friends.
“I love all of the graffiti, the art and the pool balls,” Sheldon Sims, 14, added. “I’ve seen the building from the outside and heard some things about it from my aunt who is the bar manager, but I never knew it was going to be like this. It’s amazing.”
On the heels of Saturday’s grand opening, The Collective building is set to host Snowmass Casino Night on Dec. 13, a benefit for the Little Red School House, and to be a part of the Snowmassive Celebration Dec. 13 through Dec. 15 in Base Village, which recognizes the opening of both the community building and the One Snowmass buildings, coinciding with Aspen Skiing Company’s Passapalooza weekend.
The Collective is now open daily 11:30 a.m. to 9 p.m.