Aspen may be famous for legendary Ajax Mountain (the local nickname for Aspen Mountain and headquarters for jet setters) and exclusive ski resorts, yet any longtime resident will reveal that nearby Snowmass is a secret gem of this famous Rocky Mountain enclave. Family-friendly, with inescapable views of Snowmass Mountain and Mount Daly, Snowmass is just a 20-minute drive from the Victorian-era streets of downtown Aspen, yet decidedly slower in pace for the perfect luxury winter getaway. After a recent redevelopment of the Snowmass Base Village—which now houses boutique hotels, sleek condos, and plenty of dining outposts—consider this mountain haven and your residence at The Timbers Club your serene basecamp to locally-inspired living. Here’s your cheat sheet to daily fun.
Ski & Ride
While there’s plenty of beginner and intermediate Snowmass terrain, locals flock to Hanging Valley Wall and the Cirque for double-black bliss. The nutshell? Snowmass is larger than Aspen’s three other ski areas (Buttermilk, Aspen Highlands, and Ajax) combined, and has the largest vertical descent of any resort in North America, which means you can snag first tracks and be the Instagram envy of your followers most any day of the week.
Local tip: Tackle meandering blue runs off Sam’s Knob lift, then refuel at Sam’s Restaurant, which frames some of the best views in the Roaring Fork Valley.
Considered the heart and soul of Snowmass Base Village, The Collective Snowmass features weekly programing such as socially-distanced chess night, comedy night, and live music (public health order dependent). Kids will love The Selfie Den, a new winter popup. Additionally, The Rink is open daily for free ice skating, while Game of Stones, a festive curling series, is held most Friday afternoons.
New & Noteworthy
The Limelight Hotel Snowmass (located in Snowmass Base Village adjacent to the Elk Camp Gondola), has debuted new private dining igloos and an exclusive ski-in/ski-out experience. The Owl Creek Day Chalet offers a dedicated staff and three catered meals (breakfast, customizable lunch, après-ski champagne toast with charcuterie board and hors d’oeuvres). Or unwind at the private patio (with wraparound fire pits)—the idyllic backdrop for s’mores and cocktails.
Sip & Savor
Standouts include cold-pressed juice blends, smoothies, and dairy-free drinks at the healthy JÜS Snowmass, decadent coffee and crepes at The Crepe Shack, and fall-off-the-bone BBQ from Slow Groovin’ Chophouse. And on deck soon? New Snowmass restaurants debuting summer 2021, including sushi and Pan-Asian cuisine from Kenichi and American fare from the new Aurum Aspen Snowmass.
Only at Snowmass
The historic, on mountain Lynn Britt Cabin is akin to Aspen Highlands’ iconic Cloud9 restaurant in that it frames Rocky Mountain Views, showcases locally sourced cuisine, and is accessed at night via snowcat, yet with a more laidback vibe. If a non-skier or wanting to take a day off from skiing, join ACES (Aspen Center for Environmental Studies) for guided tours through the natural expanse of Snowmass. Snowshoe, hike, or use stabilizers to explore along Nature and Sleighride Trails, keeping an eye out for winter creatures and learning about mountain habitats and Snowmass history (hikes begin at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. daily through April 16).
Stay: Five Ski-In/Ski-Out Club Residences
The Club's five retreats at the Timbers Resorts Residence Club feature great rooms with fireplaces, gourmet kitchens, a slope-side ski valet service and storage, and an outdoor balcony. Easy ski-in/ski-out access ensures first tracks on the slopes, and the prime location makes The Timbers Club your idyllic headquarters for exploring Aspen/Snowmass.
Bedrooms: 3 | Baths: 3 | Square Feet: 2000