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Lodging for family of 5 beginner and advanced skiers

Georgia
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Lodging for family of 5 beginner and advanced skiers

I am looking for advice on lodging for a family of 5 that are planning on skiing in Aspen the week after Christmas. We have two beginner skiers that plan to take lessons for the first few days. Two others are blue.black skiers. One is a non skier and wants to be close to Aspen so she can shop and walk.

I know buttermik and Snowmass are the best mountains for the beginner skiers.

We would like a choice that would make it easiest for the non skier. We will have a car, so the skiers can drive to buttermilk/snowmass. Any condo recommendations that are family friendly and affordable? kids ages are 14,15, 20. We think we need a 2 bedroom that will have a pull out bed in the living area.

Any suggestions? Better to stay in town or closer to the lifts at Ajax? Where are the best values?

Thanks.

Aspen, Colorado
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1. Re: Lodging for family of 5 beginner and advanced skiers

http://www.aspensnowmass.com/

http://www.stayaspensnowmass.com/

Some helpful links to get you started. Value i.e. lower lodging prices, can be had after the holiday week but I believe you're looking at the week directly after Christmas --the most expensive week of the year. My opinion is if you spend the money to come to Aspen it's preferable to stay in town and will be far more enjoyable for the non-skier. Note Ajax (btw only people over 75 still call it that) is in town.

If you stay in town make sure you get a parking spot with lodging. Also know that if you have 4 or more in a car parking lots at the Highlands and 2 at Snowmass are free. Buttermilk is free as long as there are spots available.

Do some research and come back with some places for us to comment on.

Georgia
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2. Re: Lodging for family of 5 beginner and advanced skiers

tex ranger:

I did some homework and have been looking at condos around Aspen mountain.

There is a 2bed 2 bath at Shadow Mountain for ~$4k all in. Also ones at Lift One, but more expensive.

Similar priced places are near Snowmass, but it sounds like from your perspective it is better for the skiers to drive/bus and the non-skier to be in Aspen.

What is your thoughts on these two? Others you would suggest? The Christmas week is a killer, but unfortunately we don't have a choice.

Thanks.

Aspen, Colorado
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3. Re: Lodging for family of 5 beginner and advanced skiers

Ajax (also known as Aspen Mountain) has 2 lifts that leave from town. The 1A lift, also known as Shadow Mountain is very close to the lift one condos. The shadow mountain lodge is about 3 blocks farther away. Either would be walking distance to the 1A for the skiers. In addition there is a free bus to Buttermilk or Snowmass that leaves every other block on Main Street every 15 minutes during the ski season.

Enjoy your stay!

Aspen, Colorado
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4. Re: Lodging for family of 5 beginner and advanced skiers

Note: no lessons for beginners at Aspen Mt. Must be level 5 or above plus the 1A chair is not suitable for kids -- no drop down bar.

I've not stayed in either place you mentioned. Read the TA reviews and google for more.

San Francisco
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5. Re: Lodging for family of 5 beginner and advanced skiers

There are two places called Shadow Mountain -- Shadow Mountain Lodge and Shadow Mountain Condos. I think you mean the Condos on Aspen Street. If you are comparing The Shadow Mountain Condos and Lift One Condos, then I would recommend Lift One because of the location, the better layout of the condos and the onsite management vs just renting from a realtor. Lift One has better location (IMO) because it is right on the bus route and level with the Gondola whereas Shadow Mountain is up the hill on Aspen street so it is a bit of a hike from the bus with your skis.

Shadow Mountain does have great views of Red mountain and town from the living rooms(because they are up the hill) but the bedrooms are located on the lower level of each condo, have no views and are dark and sort of cramped. Lift ONe has 2 bedroom condos with views either of Aspen Mountain or Smuggler mountain. Some have views from both the living room and one of the bedrooms. The top floors have better views than the lower floors.

Christmas week is the most expensive week to rent, but the two bedrooms at either Shadow Mountain or Lift One are relatively reasonable compared to other lodgings in the Aspen core. Lower rates can be found at the St. Moritz, but they do not have many larger units that could accommodate 5 people.

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6. Re: Lodging for family of 5 beginner and advanced skiers

I think you'll all have more fun staying in Aspen proper rather than out at Snowmass. Snowmass can feel a little isolated and out of the way, and there's not much nightlife. Buses run regularly to (and among) all four mountains, so it's easy for the beginner skiers to get to Buttermilk and the advanced skiers to get to Highlands if they want to hike the Bowl. Please keep in mind that green, blue, black diamond, and double-black diamond ratings are specific to each mountain, so a blue at Buttermilk will be different from a blue at, say, Jackson Hole.

Aspen itself is a very small town, so as long as you are staying in town, you don't need to worry about being close to lifts unless you don't want to walk a few blocks. You don't need a car in Aspen, IMO, because of the excellent bus system. (Who wants to drive Hwy. 82 in winter if they don't have to, anyway?)

To give you a sense of where everything is:

- Aspen Mountain/Ajax is in downtown Aspen. It's an intermediate-and-advanced-only mountain. IMO, it's a skier's, not snowboarder's mountain, because of the large number of narrow, steeper runs.

- Aspen Highlands is a little friendlier to beginners than is Aspen Mountain/Ajax, but not much. It's about a 10- or 15-minute bus ride from downtown Aspen. Considered the locals' mountain.

- Buttermilk Mountain is a beginner-and-intermediate mountain. It's also where X Games are held every year. Unless you enjoy going in the parks, advanced (and even advanced intermediate) skiers will be bored here. It's a 15-to-20-minute bus ride from downtown Aspen.

- Snowmass has something for everyone, including wide-open runs off of the Big Burn lift. Some steeps, but not as many as at Ajax or Highlands. Snowmass is a separate village/address from Aspen and is a 30-minute bus ride from downtown.

I would check out vacation rentals on VBRO.com and look at the properties' maps to ensure they're in town. (Feel free to post back here if you want to know where any are located. E.g., avoid those that say "Independence Pass" or "Old Snowmass.")

7. Re: Lodging for family of 5 beginner and advanced skiers

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