Winter is here, which means for some of us that the mountains are calling. With access to some of the most celebrated slopes in North America, plus luxury packages covering private jet travel and a “First Tracks” program, these five resorts from the Canadian Rockies and California’s Martis Valley to the mountains of Colorado will leave skiers and snowboarders spoiled for choice. The holidays are fast approaching so there is plenty of festive programming on offer too – from a Menorah lighting ceremony and winter solstice yoga sessions to Christmas and New Year’s Eve dinners.
Whether looking to go big with a heli-skiing trip or mellower-paced activities like a guided snowshoe tour appeals, the options for adventures are endless. Off the mountain, chic après spots and seasonally inspired spa treatments also feature.
Fairmont Banff Springs, Canada
Built-in the style of a Scottish castle by the Canadian Pacific Railway and opened in 1888, Fairmont Banff Springs is considered the birthplace of tourism in the Canadian Rockies. The grand dame hotel has provided a sophisticated resort experience to visitors for more than a century and is as famous for its storybook alpine views as its facilities, highlights of which include the Willow Stream Spa. Nestled inside Banff National Park, about an hour and a half from Calgary, the region is known for its Champagne powder, so as one might imagine, the skiing is world-class with shuttles running guests to the nearby resorts of Lake Louise, Mt. Norquay, and Sunshine Village. Available through April 30, 2022, the hotel’s Luxury Ski Package includes accommodation, daily a la carté breakfast, self-parking, shuttle service, and two tri-area ski passes per room. Meanwhile, a solid lineup of curated winter experiences provides access to the great outdoors with options ranging from a snowshoe under the stars tour (s’mores included) and snowmobiling to ice fishing and sleigh rides. For the thrill-seekers, there’s a full-day ice climbing excursion. Dinner or late-night drinks in the outdoor 360° Dome should make for a memorable experience; while new this season, a Winter Wonderland will feature a skating rink and private fire pits, plus drinks and snacks served from a rustic cabin.
The Ritz-Carlton, Lake Tahoe
Enjoying a prime mid-mountain position on Northstar Resort, guests will be spoiled with unrivaled ski-in,ski-out access at The Ritz-Carlton, Lake Tahoe. The cozy mountain retreat meets high-end hotel boasts a slope-side spa and handsomely appointed rooms and marble bathrooms that feature fireplaces and oversized soaking tubs, respectively. A dedicated mountain concierge can help take care of everything from scheduling ski lessons and equipment rentals to getting kids set up with classes at the Burton Snowboard Academy. Couples or families can hang up the skis and jump on a full moon snowshoe hike or schedule a scenic helicopter tour over the Lake Tahoe Basin. And guests will be spoiled for choice when it comes to holiday events – advance reservations are required for the Christmas and New Year’s Eve Dinners at fine dining restaurant Manzanita – while après-ski hangouts range from the Whiskey & Waffles Cabin to the Champagne & Caviar Bar.
Four Seasons Jackson Hole, Wyoming
Home to over 3,000 acres of backcountry terrain and an impressive 4,139 of vertical feet, Jackson Hole is a mecca for skiers who like things steep and deep. But it’s not all expert-level cliffs and chutes. Nestled at the base of the mountain, Four Seasons Jackson Hotel provides guests slope-side access along with amenities like a dedicated ski concierge who can take care of everything from rentals and custom boot fitting to lift tickets. When it’s time for a day off the mountain, they can take their pick from a slew of winter wonderland adventures, including a full-day dog sled tour to Granite Hot Springs and a horse-drawn sleigh ride. Powderhounds can make fresh tracks on any of the five surrounding ranges with a heli-skiing package. When it comes to après ski, ‘igloo’ pop-up bar Fahrenheit Forty-Seven (named for the perfect temperature to serve Champagne) is the hottest spot in town for sparkling cocktails or a bottle of Moët & Chandon Impérial. On the wellness side, there are two winter solstice yoga sessions on December 21, while The Spa is launching a Snow Melt Ritual treatment on New Year’s Day that incorporates a soothing milk bath and full-body Swedish massage.
Viceroy Snowmass, Colorado
Coveted by skiers and snowboarders alike, Viceroy Aspen Snowmass is a luxury ski-in, ski-out resort located at the foot of Snowmass Mountain. Its studio, suite, and penthouse accommodations are chic and tastefully decorated and amenities exceptional – full-time ski concierges are on hand to curate the perfect vacations. Although this winter, the hotel has gone above and beyond, creating several fun and thoughtful packages. The standout being a Seamless Ski Luxury Experience featuring roundtrip travel via private jet, a personal guide for the duration of the visit, access to Aspen Snowmass First Tracks program, daily spa treatments, plus a private driver who can whisk guests into Aspen or other local mountains on a whim. While the privately guided Friends On A Powder Day is perfect for small groups, who love looking for fresh tracks without having to wait in line, followed by a private poolside cabana après experience, of course. Viceroy Snowmass is making it easy for guests to get into the festive spirit as well, thanks to a dedicated Holiday Concierge who can set up décor and help plan events – think everything from sourcing Christmas lights and dreidel sets to organizing sleigh rides and snowshoe adventures for families and couples.
Montage Deer Valley, Utah
Famous for its perfect powder (many say Utah has the best snow on earth), where better to plan that next winter trip than the Montage Deer Valley in Park City? With more than 2,000 acres to keep skiers and snowboarders happy (trails range from novice runs like Lucky Jack to the expert-level Daly Bowl), the hotel is steps from the slopes of Deer Valley, which means plenty of first track mornings. Thanks to Montage International’s partnership with Adventure IO, thrill-seekers can schedule a private heli-ski excursion led by professional freeskier Mitchell Brower this winter. Seasonal celebrations include holiday stocking deliveries and caroling, plus New Year’s Eve dinners at Yama Sushi and signature restaurant Apex. Of course, guests aren’t limited to ski days here. Spending an afternoon at Spa Montage (try the High Altitude Re-Centering and California Wild Flower Ritual treatments) is time well spent, and reservations for cozy private dining space, Alpenglobes at Vista Lounge, also highly recommended. Pro tip: the hotel’s canine ambassador, Monty the Bernese Mountain dog, visits with guests by the grandfather clock there every day at 3 p.m.
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