Aspen Ski Holidays
USA

Resort Aspen Resort Aspen Resort Aspen

Description

Known for attracting some rich and famous clientele, the former silver mining town of Aspen lies at the foot of Aspen Mountain (aka Ajax). It is an illustrious resort with extensive slopes for all skill levels and a reputation for luxury. The town is charming, the ski schools are excellent and the pistes are notoriously quiet. 


The town of Aspen itself is attractive and lively, complete with boutiques, trendy bars and fine dining. While it’s certainly not the cheapest destination in the world, there are still some great-value accommodation options available and the resort is very popular with families.


Getting There

Holidaymakers can fly from London Heathrow to Aspen via Denver or Chicago. Alternatively, one can fly into Denver, from which the resort is a 3.5-hour transfer away. Within the resort itself, free busses run regularly.


When to Go


Where to Stay



Getting around


Apres

The après scene is a little different to Austria and France, but you’ll certainly find some swanky bars and lively venues in Aspen.

At the end of the ski day, there are quite a few bars close to the foot of the slopes, but the highlight is probably the Ajax Tavern, which has a huge terrace that is very popular when the sun comes out. 


The music starts ramping up toward the end of the afternoon and by the time 6 o’clock rolls around there’s an incredible vibe.

For a quiet snifter in style, Element 47 in The Little Nell is a fine choice, as is the historic J-Bar at the Jerome Hotel – a popular haunt since 1889.

For live music, Belly Up is the place to go, while Eric's Bar offers 14 delicious beers on tap and over 50 malt scotches.

The hip 39 Degrees in the Sky Hotel is another great place to check out – they mix some incredible cocktails.


Eating out

Aspen has a wonderful range of restaurants to sample, including some Alpine-style venues to establishments with plenty of ‘old west’ charm. Of course, many of the resort’s restaurants are on the pricey side, but you certainly get what you pay for.

The Cloud Nine Alpine Bistro is the closest thing to an Alpine restaurant you will find in Aspen. The menu is primarily French and Swiss orientated but you can find a few Austrian options like veal schnitzel as well. Later on in the afternoon, there is music and dancing on table tops – not a million miles away from an American Folie Douce! 


Another good option is the Ajax Tavern, which is ski in/ski out at the bottom of Aspen Mountain with a superb sun terrace and an excellent menu of up-market Canadian favourites, including truffle fries, cheeseburgers, onion soup and oysters. As with Cloud Nine, there is a lively après scene here, so if the sun is out make sure you bring your dancing shoes.

For couples in search of an elegant atmosphere, the Element 47 in The Little Nell is an excellent choice – one sure to create a memorable experience.

Families in search of big portions, meanwhile, should try Bumps at Buttermilk or the fantastic American grub at Jimmy’s.

If you’ve got a gang of famished friends, the 520 Grill is a great bet for fuelling up with cheap tacos, burgers and lots more to choose from. For an auspicious start to the day on the mountain, Poppycock’s does brilliants breakfasts – not to mention off-mountain lunches.

Below, you’ll find a few top restaurants in Aspen, as voted by our ski experts.


Good for Couples

Element 47

675 E Durant Ave

Aspen

+1 970-920-6330

Good for Couples

Little Annie’s

517 E Hyman Ave

Aspen

+1 970-925-1098

Good for Family

Bumps at Buttermilk

38700 Hwy 82

Aspen

+1 970-920-0991

Good for Family

Jimmy’s

205 S Mill St

Aspen

+1 970-925-6020

Good for Friends

Cloud Nine Alpine Bistro

On piste restaurant

Cloud Nine Lift Aspen Highlands

Montgenevre

+1 970-923-8715

Good for Friends

Poppycock’s

665 E Cooper Ave

Aspen

+1 970-925-1245


Activities

There are a range of non-skiing activities to enjoy in Aspen, but the highlight has to be Ullr Nights.

Every Friday night during the peak of the winter season, a winter wonderland celebration is held in honour of the Norse God of Snow, Ullr, at Elk Camp in Snowmass. From 5 to 9 pm, friends and families enjoy ice skating, tubing, snowbiking, s'mores and hot chocolate by a crackling bonfire.


You can also dance to live music and enjoy delicious a la carte dining.

Otherwise, visitors to Aspen can enjoy the resort’s bountiful boutique shopping and spas, as well as snowshoeing and snowmobiling.

A trip to the resort’s tourist office will offer lots of useful information on resort activities, but here are just a few ideas to start you off.


Snowmobile Tours

Aspen

+1 970-925-4614

Snowshoeing

Aspen

+1 970-925-5756

Spa & Wellness

Aspen

+1 970-925-2278


Ski School


Getting around


Family ski

Aspen is a high-altitude ski resort with a reputation among jet-setters and famous movie stars, but away from the glitz and glamour lies a welcoming mountain destination with something for all. Pistes are generally peaceful and quiet, and the pretty town has all the amenities families need to enjoy the snowy slopes. There’s a wide range of terrain for all levels, which works well for families, but they’re split over four different peaks and getting around by bus can be a chore. 

There’s a superb range of kids’ programmes and childcare options in and around Aspen, organised and arranged by the local ski schools, allowing parents to visit with the kids and enjoy complete peace of mind. 

The Treehouse Kids Adventure Centre is located in the Snowmass base village. This is an interactive childcare facility where kids are front and centre, offering a diverse range of activities for youngsters of all ages. Here, you’ll find themed entertainment rooms with a fitting Colorado mountain theme, where babies from 8 weeks and kids up to 4 years of age are welcomed in. The facility offers licensed and professional childcare for infants and toddlers alongside ski school programs for youngsters mastering their first turns on the snow. With ski school and childcare under one roof, the Treehouse Kids Adventure Centre is a family facility parents must check out. 

Buttermilk is widely regarded the home of family skiing in Aspen, and The Hideout is a well-located child-friendly facility here. The Hideout offers an introduction to the sport of skiing for snow-lovers aged two and a half to 4 years old. Here, there’s a gentle training slope for nervous learners making their first turns, and a magic carpet lift for hassle-free uplift. Away from the slopes, there are four interactive play rooms where kids can fire their imaginations and enjoy their mountain environment with play-based learning. It’s worth noting, however, that the Hideout Children’s Centre is for the exclusive use of the Aspen Ski and Snowboard School – you can’t book in for childcare only. 

Away from the groomed pistes, families in Aspen have a wide range of adventurous activities to choose from. ‘Ullr Nights’ is the name given to the family-friendly night time celebrations held every Friday evening during Aspen’s winter ski season. The Ullr Nights festivities are named in honour of the Norse God of Snow, Ullr, and take place at Elk Camp – with child-friendly entertainments including live music, night tubing under illuminations, plus delicious food and tasty treats to tuck into. 

The Breathtaker Alpine Coaster is a go-to facility for high-speed thrills off the groomed slopes, with elevated track running over a mile through the dense forest. Riders can reach top speeds in safety, and the course is open daytime, during selected après ski hours, and during the special Ullr Nights events. 
Tubing is a wonderfully popular activity in Aspen, too, and a great way to burn off the kids’ energy before heading home to rest. The tubing slopes are found near The Meadows at Elk Camp, Snowmass, with multiple lanes serviced by swift lifts. Lights illuminate the runs for evening tobogganers during the popular Ullr Nights celebrations and après ski extended hours. Parents can buy tickets to the tubing at Snowmass, or combo tickets for the tubing and the Breathtaker Alpine Coaster. 

Snow biking is another family-friendly activity on offer in Aspen, though reserved for slightly older children (aged 12 and up) and teens. Families can book into lessons together, and master the art of sliding down the slopes on a cross between a bike and a snowboard! Whether used as a break from skiing and boarding, or as an alternative way of exploring the mountain scenery, it’s fun for all the family.

For parents in search of a truly special family-friendly activity, you can hop aboard a Snowcat piste-basher and zoom up the mountain by night for a high-altitude dinner to remember. There are two destinations to choose from; the Lynn Britt Cabin located on Snowmass or the Cloud Nine Alpine Bistro which sits on Aspen Highlands – both offering gourmet cuisine and a family-friendly atmosphere. The Lynn Britt Cabin offers a Colorado themed dining environment, with a weekly ‘chuckwagon’ dining experience for families and a traditional log-cabin feel. The Cloud Nine Alpine Bistro is a slightly swankier affair, with an authentic Alpine atmosphere reminiscent of those iconic Swiss ski resorts. Here, families can enjoy delicious cuisine with fine views over the beautiful Maroon Bells — two local mountain peaks. 

Ice-skating is a popular family-friendly activity in Aspen, and the new ice rink in Snowmass Village is the perfect place to take to the ice. The rink sits in the Base Village Plaza, with plenty of space for youngsters and a free rental service. And if bad weather closes in or the kids are off in search of entertainment away from the snowy slopes, there’s a brilliant all-season climbing wall located at Snowmass’ fabulous Limelight Hotel. The wall features three lanes suited to climbers of different abilities, and equipment including shoes and harnesses are included alongside guided supervision in each half-hour session.


Group Ski


Childcare

Besides the wonderful non-skiing activities on offer, Aspen has some excellent childcare facilities to keep the little ones entertained under dedicated supervision.

The Treehouse Kids' Adventure Center in Snowmass Village is a multilevel 2,300-square-meter childcare facility. It brings the great outdoors inside with Colorado-themed play rooms and supervised activities for children aged 8 weeks to 4 years old. 


Meanwhile over at Buttermilk, the new $10m children’s centre The Hideout offers four interactive indoor learning rooms to foster imaginations and allow for play-based learning during breaks from skiing. It also has easy access to a gentle training slope for first turns, offering the perfect introduction to the sport.


The Piste

With the resort perched at 2420m and slopes up to 3490m, Aspen is a snow-sure bet for keen skiers. Visitors to Aspen can enjoy four separate ski areas, which are linked by a free shuttle bus service. Buttermilk is perfect for beginners, while Ajax and Aspen Highlands are for those with more experience under their belts. Snowmass, meanwhile, is the largest of the four areas and comprises a good blend of terrain for groups of mixed abilities. The first three ski areas are not too far from each other in the Roaring Fork valley, while Snowmass is a slightly longer journey away. 

To cap things off, there is some excellent off-piste potential to enjoy – particularly in Snowmass and Aspen highlands – plus terrain parks in Buttermilk and Snowmass.


Ski School


Equipment Hire


Lift Passes





RESORT STATISTICS

  • ALTITUDE

    2425m

  • LONGEST PISTE

    7km

  • HIGHEST SKI LIFT

    3415m

  • TOTAL LIFTS

    42

  • TOTAL PISTE

    184km






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Limelight Hotel
 

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Limelight Hotel
 
Aspen, USA
 
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