Luxury Hotels: It's not every day we hear about a hotel that's been heralded as the world's best ski hotel (by Cigar Aficionado) before it even opens. Come December 8, though, we'll have the chance to find out whether the Montage Deer Valley near Park City, Utah, lives up to that acclaim when the new luxury resort welcomes its first guests.
The sprawling resort is an upscale blend of Craftsman architecture and mountainside charm. It has 154 deluxe guestrooms and over 66 suites (the final number will depend on how many of the 81 private residences will be available for hotel guests) that range from one to four bedrooms. Even the standard rooms start at a spacious 600 square feet, but suites range from 1,000 to a jaw-dropping 3,200 square feet, so there's plenty of room to roam.
All the accommodations feature fireplaces, sitting areas, luxury ski country furnishings, local artwork, signature Montage bedding and linens, walk-in closets, baths with soaking tubs and separate glassed-in showers and radiant heating (cozy on those cold winter nights), and vista windows (many also have private patios or balconies), LCD televisions, and high-speed internet access. Rooms are serviced with twice-daily housekeeping as well.
Location, Location, Location
The newest Montage resort is just five minutes from Park City's lively Main Street, and a quick 36-mile drive from the Salt Lake City Airport. Meaning you could be wheels down and on the slopes in no time at all, and still have time for a warm, strong après-ski aperitif while you hang out on the terrace or in the four-lane bowling alley.
Montage Deer Valley sits atop Empire Pass, at 8,300 feet, with panoramic views of the Wasatch Mountains and the green aspen groves that cover their flanks. Impressive, too, is the fact that this full-service luxury resort has ski in/ski out access, so guests can step out the back door and swish right out onto the slopes, with over 100 alpine trails and 20 lifts within easy access.
For the Non-Skier
Not a skier? That's okay, because the resort caters to travelers of every interest, with seasonal and year-round activities, and can arrange group activities like snowshoeing, yoga, sleigh rides and outdoor concerts. In the spring and summer, there's mountain-biking, fishing, hiking, horseback riding, river rafting, sailing, canoeing, hot air ballooning, and golf, as well as some more distinctively fun activities like mountainside scavenger hunts. Montage Deer Valley also has a host of family-friendly activities, including the Paintbox program for kids ages 5-12.
Spa Montage measures up at a respectable 35,000 square feet of pampering indulgence, with 29 treatment rooms, his and hers relaxation rooms, a sunning deck, sauna steam rooms, an indoor lap pool, and three indoor-outdoor mosaic pools and spa tubs. It also encompasses a movement studio, fitness center, and full-service salon.
The resort is home to several restaurants. For coffee, tea, gelato, and on-the-go grub, there's a café called Buzz. Daly's Pub & Rec is a gastropub with a menu of upscale comfort classics and brick-oven pizzas. Apex is the hotel's signature restaurant, focusing on farm-to-table fare, while the Vista Lounge and Terrace is more of a casual bistro with handcrafted cocktails. Like what you eat or drink? Take a cooking class or enjoy a wine-tasting with the resort's chefs and sommeliers.
The other commendable feature of the resort is its commitment to sustainability-after all, its raison d'être depends on the pristine quality of its surrounding nature. That's why the resort is pursuing initiatives like LEED certification by minimizing its carbon footprint, and commissioning architecture that incorporates as much natural lighting as possible and uses indigenous materials. Montage is also setting aside 2,800 acres of land aside as a conservation easement.
You might have already missed out on your chance to score a reservation during January's Sundance Festival, but rates start at $675 a night in December.
Montage Deer Valley
9100 Marsac Avenue
Park City, UT 84060
(435) 604-1300 www.montagedeervalley.com